Shifting expectations in the wedding industry

pulsar69 15 1.6k 6 United Kingdom
14 Sep 2013 9:09AM
Customer Phone Call:

Hello , I am getting married and have looked at and love your work on your website your photos are great. However i would like to get a quote as I am getting married on a Sunday in July and wondered if you do discounts for a Sunday wedding and what sort of price i can get. We are looking around at the moment and have lots of photographers to see......


When did a sunday in july become a discounted wedding date or am i missing something , does anyone else not do weddings on sundays or offer deals for them in peak season ?

Is it a sign of the character of the caller that they should praise my work and then ask me to take less money for it- or just a sign of the times ?

I always think when i am told they are seeing lots of photographers that they simply do not appreciate the photography itself as they are unable to differentiate what they like from what they don't, or is this simply a common rouse to extort a discount ? Do others get it often

I have offered the client an appointment to discuss further as we do with all our clients but somehow get the feeling that this is not the sort of client we actually want, do you ever turn away work if you feel you have not connected ?

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big fella 16 485 England
14 Sep 2013 9:27AM
Would they expect to work a Sunday for less than during the week? I don't think so!

Sunday = double bubble.

You could always quote double, but discount to the standard rate, so that they are getting a "bargain"!
gala 6 1.1k United Kingdom
14 Sep 2013 9:34AM
As every TV / Radio programme on money suggests that you ask for a discount, I expect that they were just asking. And if you're going to ask, of course you will praise first. They may well not be expecting a bargain.
pulsar69 15 1.6k 6 United Kingdom
14 Sep 2013 9:56AM

Quote:As every TV / Radio programme on money suggests that you ask for a discount, I expect that they were just asking. And if you're going to ask, of course you will praise first. They may well not be expecting a bargain.

I appreciate that and its not uncommon to be asked for a discount , it is however the first time anyone has ever expected that their wedding to be cheaper because its on a sunday , traditionally most weddings were on sat / sun and its only with the takeover of civil weddings that other days have become more popular.
Gundog 6 629 Scotland
14 Sep 2013 10:00AM
No knowledge of the industry but my only comment would be that, as Saturdays are the most popular day for weddings, it is maybe not unreasonable to think that Sundays should be less expensive than Saturdays.
Spencer1966 7 85 1 United Kingdom
14 Sep 2013 10:22AM
never been asked about reduction in rates just on a sunday - seems anyday these days!!

Ive also had lately several couples stringing me along saying they are still interested in meeting with me when I know full well they have booked another photographer!! (Facebook a wonderful thing for that) anyway whats that all about?
puertouk 8 1.1k 17 United Kingdom
14 Sep 2013 10:54AM
Why not put on your site "NO DISCOUNTS AVAILABLE DUE TO being PROFESSIONAL" We are not in the business of giving discounts, because we are a professional photography business, who specialise in the most important day of a couples lives. People want to look at pictures that have been professionally produced by experienced photographers, not someone from a one man band outfit who purport themselves as been professional, when in fact they are nothing more than part-time snappers, who belong on some sea front taking holiday snaps.

"REMEMBER, YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR" Why risk the most important day of your lives by cutting corners? Just think about it! Your special day ruined by an amateur who does not have the skills or the professionalism to make your special day, very special. "WE GUARANTEE OUR WORK"
Lucian 9 562
14 Sep 2013 10:58AM
I have updated the details on my website to make it clear to people what sort of photographer I am and what sort of clientele I am after.
ade_mcfade 15 15.2k 216 England
14 Sep 2013 11:39AM
many "jobs" pay overtime rates on a Sunday at time and half, or even double

Suggest that you usually charge 50% more on Sundays because you are away from your family on the Lord's day and need compensating accordingly Wink
ade_mcfade 15 15.2k 216 England
14 Sep 2013 11:40AM

Quote:I have updated the details on my website to make it clear to people what sort of photographer I am and what sort of clientele I am after.

could we have a link - I'd be interested to see how you've phrased this
Jasper87 Plus
9 2.3k 158 England
14 Sep 2013 11:45AM
ruined by an amateur who does not have the skills or the professionalism to make your special day, very special.

A bit harsh on the amateur who does have the 'skills and professionalism' and what about the 'professional' who doesn't!!

Web sites, recommendations and face-to-face meetings are so important.
llareggub 9 825 United Kingdom
14 Sep 2013 5:24PM
I'll quite often 'haggle' for a discount and use anything I can to leverage that, expect it and price accordingly, usually if there is no 'wiggle room' I don't buy, as simple as that.

I quit work at the age of 34 because I could but before that I used to get annoyed with folk that saw the customer as an adversary, they are not, without them you have no business!
sitan1 Plus
11 1.2k 1 United Kingdom
14 Sep 2013 5:46PM
It's human nature to get things discounted or a lot cheaper.
I try it on all the time lol, if you don't ask you don't get.
Saying they are seeing loads of photographers is a scare tactic making you think you might be letting their business slip away unless you give them the discount.
Don't worry about it just say you don't offer discounts and if they where serious about your quality of work it won't put them off.
cuffit Plus
13 342 5 England
14 Sep 2013 5:46PM
Surely, everyone looks for a bargain or discount these days although, usually, not before you know the asking price for whatever product or service you are looking for. I am not a wedding photographer but admire the skill required and the underlying requirement that you are working without a safety net - it has to be right and that is some pressure! But business rules and pressures still apply don't they?

The customer has done some research and you are at least in the hat if the business is important to you? Unless you publish a list of your prices up-front (difficult as no 2 weddings will be same I expect) then asking for the quote/meeting is reasonable; I also thought that the majority of weddings took place on Saturdays, but then the world has changed so much it probably doesn't matter anymore when differentiating between any other day of the week - from a customer's perspective. The customer is looking at otherportfolios; most would not be so up front about it but isn't it sensible practice: moving house, get 3 quotes; building an extension, get 3 quotes; buying a car - tour the garages. So the meeting will either meet the customer's expectations at the price you set for what they want, or you will not be able to meet the task for the money offered. Another quote with no outcome perhaps, but builders, companies and free-lancers of all persuasions go through this all the time and you seem to be very experienced at this profession, so I am not sure why it bothers you so as you must experience this all the time I would have thought?

Isn't wedding photography vulnerable, as builders etc are vulnerable, to the fact that there are no 'barriers to entry' - anyone can have a go - but I would suggest that only those that can match the quality required to the right price and matched to the expectations of the customer, would survive in the wedding photo industry. Technology and the unreasonable expectations of customers have appeared in these forums before and I am not sure how you meet all the demands, but if you don't someone else will and this will not matter as long as you can find enough customers to keep the business viable, or you leave the market. I suspect that even if you gave a fair price it might be they select some one nearer home or opt, mistakenly but not always so, someone cheaper.

By way of interest, I popped upstairs and counted our wedding photographs - 28 in a nice album taken all those years ago in the 70s - no flares thank goodness but I did have a dodgy moustache! I think the photographer was with us from the start of the wedding ceremony, arrival of the bride through to cutting the cake at the reception; it was a husband and wife team and they owned a business in the high street so you could see the photos they took. No delivering the negatives the same night and gigabytes of photos to wade through as it seems to be today so I can imagine the pressure are even greater now as customers expect more - but they do everywhere and what might have seemed wholly unreasonable a few years ago will now be the norm - and it can only get harder I would have thought.
Gundog 6 629 Scotland
14 Sep 2013 8:18PM
It's easy to have double standards in any discussion of this type.

It reminds me of an episode about 17-18 years ago when a guy in the same Rotary Club asked me for a quotation for the design of a website for his business. I gave him my best price which, in those days, was based upon my time (there were no other significant costs) at 6 per hour.

His first response was to ask me if I could "sharpen my pencil".

I told him to eff off and walked out of his office.

Next week at the Rotary meeting he asked me why I had reacted that way. I explained that, by asking me for a discount, he was implying that my quoted price was not my best price and that I had tried to cheat him by quoting an inflated price. I repeated that I would not do business with any ignorant w@nker who questioned my integrity in that way. He never came back to the Rotary Club and I heard on the grapevine that he had eventually paid four times my price for his company website.

But I think times have changed. TV programmes like Bargain Hunt do now imply that it is morally acceptable to haggle over prices.

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