A New Pricing Problem

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by flipsidestudio, Jul 23, 2008.

  1. flipsidestudio

    flipsidestudio TPF Noob!

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    At least, this is a new problem for me. Hopefully some of you can give me your opinions so I know where to go from here.

    Basically, I'm doing a job for a spa to take promo and advertisement photos because they are making it into a franchise company. I'll be photographing many of the rooms, procedures and the storefront. I'm currently guessing that the owner will want about 50 shots but he hasn't gotten me the shot list yet.

    The problem I'm having is that he wants high res digital copies of the photos. I know that many photographer refuse to do this, and I normally do too but I've been getting this request more and more often these days. What I've decided to do is essentially sell him the copyrights to the photos with a few restrictions that will be outlined in a contract. Mainly, I'll have full use of the photos and he cannot sell them.

    I'm stuck as to how to price this because I normally will not sell my copyrights. I am a pretty new photographer also so I'm using this job as a chance for me to apply everything I've learned so far about location and lighting. I think I can do a good job with it, but it will be a big learning experience for me so I don't feel the need to charge him too much as I want the deal to be fair for both of us.

    So, limited copyrights to about 50 photos. What do you guys think? 2k? Less? More?

    Any other suggestions are welcome as well.
     
  2. astrostu

    astrostu Guest

    Have you done something like this before (without the rights part)? If so, use your standard fee and I would add 25-50%. I'm always questioning whether to charge more and risk pricing myself out of a sale / making people think I'm gouging them or to just charge less. Can't help you there.

    I'm not sure what I would charge for a job like that. Though keep in mind, I don't speak from experience. I would suggest figuring out what the usage will be for your photos. Will they be in a brochure people can pick up at the place and at hotels? Will it be a 10,000 print run or 10,000,000? Or will it also be in magazines? Will they use the in industry trade shows? Will they use them for many years or just for 1 year? In other words, more usage -> more profits for them -> you should charge more.

    Another question is if they will credit you when using them. If they'll include a tiny 6-pt line saying, "Photographed by ..." then it may be worth it to you to charge less since you'd get more exposure. In fact, if you want to charge more, and they weren't willing to do this, it could be a negotiating point for you to bring your price down.

    I realize your answer to my usage question will probably be that they'll have unlimited usage (other than selling them) since they'll be getting the digital copies (which I don't think is particularly unreasonable given the advertising business these days is all done on computers). If that's the case, then you should probably price it higher than you otherwise would even if they weren't getting the digital copies - just because it's HUGE usage rights for them.
     
  3. flipsidestudio

    flipsidestudio TPF Noob!

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    Well I think the issue for me is going to be a starting point for the pricing. Normally for jobs like this I wouldn't charge that much since I am trying to build a name, maybe 1,200 flat rate at most. That said, I haven't done too many jobs like this yet.
     
  4. craig

    craig TPF Noob!

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    Afraid to say that I have more questions then answers for you.

    Why would you not give the client full res digital images? Why would you want full use of the images and not the client? If this is a learning experience and you do not feel the need to charge too much... why not give the work away? How did you come up with 2k for the job?

    Keep in mind that a lot of research needs to go into each bid. Speak with the client and figure out his usage needs. From there consider the quality and the time spent on each image. Look at it this way. If you blow the bid and or the photos, chances of you working again just got slimmer.

    Love & Bass
     
  5. flipsidestudio

    flipsidestudio TPF Noob!

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    First of all, I simply can't afford to give my work away. This is the first promo job of this type for me so it's the first time I've ever considered giving the client digital images. I usually work with a print lab and prints tend to be where I make the most money.

    And I'm trying not to blow the bid, thus my asking for advice here.
     
  6. craig

    craig TPF Noob!

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    My point is that asking advice here, with so little information given by you is kind of point less. Spill some more info and we will be able to help further.

    )'(
     
  7. Alpha

    Alpha Troll Extraordinaire

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    Look,

    High res images are the norm. What the hell is your client going to do with web-sized jpgs? God forbid they want to print a poster or a duratrans for the storefront.

    Now about copyrights and usage rights. Giving away the copyright is not unheard of for the right price. After all, they're paying you for the images. Therefore, it's not unreasonable for them to own the images. Besides, what are you going to do with them? Sell them as stock?

    Bear in mind that copy rights and usage rights are completely separate things. So you have two options.

    1) Give them the copyright and ask for an unlimited usage license to use the photos for advertising your business/put in your portfolio.
    2) Tell them you want to retain the copyright but grant them unlimited usage rights for their business, and agree that you won't resell the photos as stock.
     
  8. Bifurcator

    Bifurcator TPF Noob!

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    Math error alert.

    If there's 2 things there should be 4 options. :D
     
  9. Alpha

    Alpha Troll Extraordinaire

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    Well fortunately I wasn't speaking math, I was speaking english.
     
  10. flipsidestudio

    flipsidestudio TPF Noob!

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    Okay, thanks for giving me something useful to go on. I appreciate your help. What I've decided to do is the first option, my issue still is how to charge for it though as I haven't really done this before. Given this guy's last email it sounds like he was expecting me to give him the photos for no additional cost, which as I said before I can't afford to do. My other issue is I know that he will be making a pretty substantial profit using these photos so I would feel taken advantage of if I were to give them away.

    One other question: I'm writing up a contract saying I'm giving him copyrights and listing what I am able to use the photos for. Is there anything other than the contract that you would suggest I have when giving them copyrights?
     
  11. Alpha

    Alpha Troll Extraordinaire

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    The actual contract should specify the copyright issue. The usage licensing should be separate, where you ask them to grant you the usage of the images.

    I'm still a little confused over this "I can't afford to" stuff. You can't afford to what? What are you losing by giving them the images and retaining a license? Like I said, there's little you can do with them other than sell them as stock and even then you wouldn't make much. What are you really giving up? And what's that worth to you?
     
  12. flipsidestudio

    flipsidestudio TPF Noob!

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    It's not what I'm giving up, it's the fact that I'm not rich and I can't afford to spend time doing photoshoots and post processing for free.
     

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