Bridal Show - Too Many Photographers

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by LarissaPhotography, Oct 14, 2009.

  1. LarissaPhotography

    LarissaPhotography TPF Noob!

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    Last week we attended a bridal show. We were expecting to be one of 2 or 3 photographers there. Last year we were the only photographer there (sweet!). Instead, there were AT LEAST 10 other photographers. For the brides it seems like that would be photographer overload. If I was in their shoes, I wouldn't even be interested in another photographer after 5 or so.
    I know of some shows that limit the number of photographers to 3, and that seems like a good idea to me. Have you guys had similar problems? Do you only attend shows where the number of photographers has a limit?
     
  2. existence02

    existence02 TPF Noob!

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    I am no pro so I can't speak from that end, but I can speak from the end of a consumer. My wife and I booked our wedding photographer at a bridal expo where there were about a dozen photographers. The one we chose got screwed on his location. The expo was in an art gallery and he was downstairs in an out of the way room surrounded by the balloon art people and the rental places.

    We chose him because he had the most professional setup (a 24in iMac with a slideshow of his work, brochures, sample prints and books, a professional backdrop, he was well dressed, and had his gear with him ready to talk about it and taking pictures of the event for fun). What we learned about him that day was that he was passionate about photography and does it even when there is no money involved, that he does great work, has good equpiment, establishes a rapport with prospective clients that made us feel comfortable, and he made us laugh a lot.

    We booked him that day and paid the deposit on site. Bottom line is don't feel discouraged by the number of other photographers there. Be yourself and present yourself the best way you can.
     
  3. erphoto

    erphoto TPF Noob!

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    I've been to a couple bridal shows, the first one I was probably the most professional there and the second I felt like there were people who were comparable to me there. (I think the first there were 5 and the second there were 10) I booked more on the spot at the one with more photographers (5 weddings) than I did at the first (0 weddings) and the first one was 2 days where the second one was 1. I really don't think that it makes much of a difference.

    I think the brides are overloaded anyways just from all of the information and people they talk to that day, from caterers to photographers to dj's. The best way to stand out is to have a great display, a wonderful personality, and a great business card and website. At the end of the day, they are more likely to go home and pull out the information they have received and visit your site if your business card pops. :) Or at least that has been my experience.
     
  4. RyanLilly

    RyanLilly No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    What Show was it and where? If you don't mind me asking.

    The Key is to stand out from the crowd. Is this the Type of Bridal Show where there are a dozen "booths" that all look the same? Maybe pipe and drape sectioning off each one, and everyone has the same table with the same sample shots and pictures on display?

    You need to stand out from the bland and boring expo-booth-photographer. Have you considered some lighting and video display Ideas. I'm talking about much more than a laptop running a sideshow. Think Trusses structures, big screen displays, LED Lighting, and video projection. Some thing that Draws attention from across the room, but then reels you in with content and personality.

    If you do want to bounce around some Ideas, I work for a production company in St. Louis, so please feel free to send me a PM.
     
  5. LarissaPhotography

    LarissaPhotography TPF Noob!

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    Ryan - it was one of Bonnie's shows over on the IL side. She usually puts on good shows. We brought in our studio lights to give our booth a "studio" feel. Video projection is an interesting idea - would you need a screen for that?
    What kind of stuff do you guys do at the production company? It's always good to know of other local companies around here.
     
  6. RyanLilly

    RyanLilly No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    We do everything from rock concert sound and lighting at verison amphitheater, to corprate conventions and parties. As for video, projection can be tough if the booths are small, but if there is dead space behind the row of booths, you can use a rear projection screen, and make the whole back wall a video screen. Altenatly, a couple of large LCD screens on truss towers and some led booth lighting would be easy, you could mount one of the screens verticaly and run a slideshow of all portrait orientation photos. And the other one landscape. Keep the studio equitment there, an make the booth into a walk-in portfolio.
     
  7. LarissaPhotography

    LarissaPhotography TPF Noob!

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    Ryan - thanks for the suggestions. Maybe we'll run into each other some time. Sounds like you have a pretty fun job there. Plenty of toys.
     
  8. Toronto111

    Toronto111 TPF Noob!

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    T depends where I am at in the planning stage.

    The first time I went to one, I was just looking for names to interview in the future.

    The second time I went, I was looking for 2 different vendors.

    The least important is that they sell our names. I HATE bridal shows now because of it. You can just as much info from a bridal magazine from your area and NOT have your name sold then to go to a bridal show and end up with 30 calls a week to be invited to scam events.
     
  9. bhphotography

    bhphotography TPF Noob!

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    I actually just did a show that had 20 photographers, usually it is around 10. I didn't do too badly as I always rent a prime spot. I've booked 4 from the show so far.
     
  10. skiboarder72

    skiboarder72 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I recently did my first bridal show, there were around 30 photographers there (30% of the show!). I ended up booking one wedding, but it was still worth it for the exposure!
     

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