Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Feb Philly PUG

Todays Philly PUG was a huge success. we had over 30 photographers come out and listen to a panel of 5 vendors, or as they would like to be called, partners. our topic was improving the experience our clients have and how to work together to build the industry. The biggest thing I got out of it was communication. Communication with everyone involved cures many problems we have as photographers.

Once we know who the players are we should call them about the timeline. Call them and tell them what we need. Ask them what they need from us. Call the videographer, introduce yourself, talk about your style and ask them about theirs. On the day of, communicate with them. Tell them what you need, "I am shooting wide and getting this" find out what they are doing.

Call the caterer, tell them what your contract says. Ask them to feed you when they drop salads. Let them know what you need and they can tell you what they can do and what they need.

Talk to the band or dj. Go over the schedule. If they like you they will make sure you don't miss the cake cutting. So will the videographer and maitre d.

Another big thing. Give them detail photos. Yes, maybe 1-3 cool images of the bride but give the vendors photos they can use to sell themselves. Include your photo credit. Include their credit in your blog post. Scratch each others back.

Finally socialize with them. Go to industry events, take them to lunch. build meaningful relationships. People always like referring their friends.

We also had other sponsors donate gifts. I think that really helped. We teamed up with a venue. They donated some food and their space at a much much lower rate.

I find, at least on the east coast, that the photographers want to make connections with other vendors. When I have a wedding planner or florist or venue come speak, it draws a crowd. It gives them an excuse to connect with someone.

Our very first meeting, a wedding planner came and spoke. he met a photographer and they have done several weddings together.

Hope this helps with ideas and gives you a little info you can use in your business.

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