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  1. #1
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    what would you tell this person?

    I am a professional pianist. As you all know, artists whether they are painters, photographers, or musicians, charge for more than just their time.

    For private lessons I charge $50 an hour, an for accompaniment I charge $40 an hour for rehearsals. To the common folk that could seem like a lot, but you are paying for my 18 years of experience and thousands upon thousands of hours of hard grueling work.

    In my college, I have been doing random portrait sessions for fellow students for several months now. My fees are really affordable and a fraction of the fee for the same thing from a generic photographer.

    Most people are surprised i charge that low because they know how much these things cost. But someone talked to me to from school. Not even a friend, but an acquaintance. Basically she is acting like im charging fortune, and is trying to haggle me down to like 30%-40% of my original fee.

    How would you explain to someone like this what goes in to a final fee for photography sessions? And help them explain the concept that i mentioned earlier with piano etc.
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  2. #2
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    I wouldn't. I would say that they should do some research to understand the great deal you are already giving them. If they still want to haggle, move on. Tell them that haggling is for flea markets and craigslist and to take a hike.

  3. #3
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    As a fellow musician I have had the same happen to me. I had a small Jazz/Oldies group that did banquets and we would charge something like $350-400 for 2-3 hours of music for a 4 piece group with a singer. (basically about $100/person for roughly 2 hours)...so about the same $50/hour you get paid. Many people would be put off on the price, but other people would be happy to pay the price to get good live music instead of a CD playing in the background. We could have been playing every night of the week if we were willing to play for 20/night/person...but we knew we were better than that. The clients we did get were higher end clients such as university banquets, doctor's award banquets, lawyer's christmas parties, opening of a new wing at the hospital, etc... and most of those recurred every year and even opened up into other gigs.

    SO...stick your ground. Good musicians (as you said) have to work for years or decades to try and perfect their art and deserve to be compensated. The way we always said it is that a lawyer gets more than $50/hour on average when they are asked to use their knowledge.....I have more time in my training on the saxophone than a lawyer does in learning law....so why should I be paid less?
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    Cheap lawyers where you live Nate, three times that or more here.
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  5. #5
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    Personally I wouldn't. I would suggest to her that if she is not happy with your fee to go find someone else to take them for that price and move along. Done. I am having somewhat similar of a deal with people expecting me to take their photos for free forever (Which I am not going to do but am while I am learning). People will try any way they can to take advantage to someone they feel they know, I am learning that it sucks really to want to share your talent with those closest to you!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kofman13 View Post
    But someone talked to me to from school. Not even a friend, but an acquaintance. Basically she is acting like im charging fortune, and is trying to haggle me down to like 30%-40% of my original fee.

    How would you explain to someone like this what goes in to a final fee for photography sessions? And help them explain the concept that i mentioned earlier with piano etc.
    You always get the hagglers who think that if they keep at it you will lower your prices just to get their custom. When you price at the lower end of the market you get a lot more hagglers and they can be far more pushy as well. Stick to your guns and remember your fee is your fee, you don't have to justify that to them at all, just state your fee and what they get. IF they don't want to pay then they don't get your services.
    It's also a good protection since if you do give in a little to the haggler they will start haggling more during and after - "well I didn't like it much in the end so I'll only pay half" etc...

    Charging more can help you as you shift from a market where cheapskates lurk and into a market where people specifically seek you out for your photos. Oddly a higher price can give more work since people associate a higher price with a higher grade of product
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kofman13 View Post
    How would you explain to someone like this what goes in to a final fee for photography sessions? And help them explain the concept that i mentioned earlier with piano etc.
    I would say:
    My fees are really affordable and a fraction of the fee for the same thing from a generic photographer.....................
    ......................... "shop around and see what the rates are, but this is what I charge."

    Beyond that I wouldn't bother to explain anything else.

  8. #8
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by eilla05 View Post
    Personally I wouldn't. I would suggest to her that if she is not happy with your fee to go find someone else to take them for that price and move along. Done.


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  10. #10
    KmH
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    WTF is a 'generic photographer'?
    . . . . . . Keith . . . . . . .How Do I Use My Digital SLR?...

    * * * * * * * * * * A photograph is a roughly approximate 2-D interpretation of a 3-D reality. * * * * * * * * * *

  11. #11
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    I think perhaps he means photographers in general.
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  12. #12
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    I would say that's the price take it or leave it, you don't have to explain anything

  13. #13
    No longer a newbie, moving up!
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    I don't think you would need to justify your pricing to anyone, anyone that can see REAL talent knows that it comes at a reasonable price, your prices are more than fair, she can take a hike or get with program.
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  14. #14
    I spend too much of my life on TPF!
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    You shouldn't even consider dealing with hagglers. You will run into plenty of them, but you will also run into people who understand you get what you pay for. Save yourself for the people who appreciate your talent.
    -Dustin

  15. #15
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    Put your price list on paper, and make copies for anyone interested. If one person should become picky such as the one you have mentioned, politely tell her about the price schedule and tell her it is not open to discussion.


    Years ago, I raised my prices significantly, my income went in the same direction......
    Just some of my thoughts...

    Pierre

 

 
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