Dealing with rude photographers

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by neea, Mar 27, 2007.

  1. neea

    neea TPF Noob!

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    The last few days a 'local' photographer has had some tables set up at the mall where you can enter to win a free portrait.
    It's the kind where everybody wins.
    (I say 'local' because I've never heard of them and I regularly check up on all my competetion within a 100 mile radius.)

    For some reason my mother felt the need to enter. She feels it's been too long since we've had family pictures done. This part I do not understand... seeing as I could take our pictures at any time and any way we want.

    The samples they had on their tables were very bad. Some were too dark and it looks like they haven't taken a picture since 1984.

    Anyways, they were calling the other day to tell my mom she had won.
    The lady would not leave a message. Her phone number was blocked. The first call made me real mad. The second really made me mad when she said 'It's just better if we contact her directly instead of her phoning us back'. By the third call I was absolutley furious with her lack of business and phone etiquette I told her I would not give my mom the message unless she told me who she was. Which is when she said she was with the photography company from the mall.

    So this Saturday me and mom are getting our portraits taken:x

    I told her 'You really think you can take me to another photographer who's pictures suck and who's insanley rude and you expect me to keep my mouth shut'.

    At least it's good to know that there isn't much competition around here :D

    I may not be able to keep my mouth shut about how rude the lady was (especially if she is the photographer).

    Any of you guys deal with other photographers who make themselves look like fools?
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    On one hand, you can rest assured that you will be much nicer and have better customer service. On the other hand, you don't want a handful of bad apples to give photographers a bap rep.

    It's probably wise to keep things civil. A lot of this business is word of mouth and you don't want your competition spreading negative things about you...true or not. Think of this as market research, you will soon have first hand experience with this photographer and you can honestly relate their short coming to people you know...while at the same time mention that you could do a better job for the.
     
  3. Jim Gratiot

    Jim Gratiot TPF Noob!

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    The good news for you is that eventually they will be rude to too many people, and their business will fold. Customer service is so bad these days, that truly great customer service stands out... and, because this is largely a word-of-mouth business, in the long run the "good customer service" photographers will be left standing, while the rude ones will have folded long ago.

    And like Mike says, it isn't worth your time creating a scene... because people like that can cause you a lot of anguish... and your time would be better spend building up your own business.
     
  4. neea

    neea TPF Noob!

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    Thanx for your replies guys.

    I suppose it is best to keep my mouth shut.
    I am often outspoken and speak my mind. I don't care much about my personal reputation but eventually it will go hand in hand with my photography reputation.

    I've made it known to a few people about the rude phone conversations.
    My mom even said to her on the phone 'I hear you were very rude to my daughter the other day'. I don't think she had much to say to that.

    Situations like this just make it easier for me to work hard. Revenge and proving people wrong is a huge motivation for me :)
     
  5. ZyxKor

    ZyxKor TPF Noob!

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    Change "won" to scammed. Way too many of the deals with sign ups in public places like malls end up being scams. What you will get is a single shot or single pose or something silly like that and then they will say (with very high pressure sales tactics) for $X more you can do this and for $X more we can do this, etc. Google the company's name on the internet to see if there are any former customers that complain about this thing. If it is a big name company I bet you will find something, chances are a little less if it is a smaller company. I could be wrong but I doubt it. The telemarketer that called you probably was annoyed because she has a script to run off of but only for the person that she is supposed to speak with.

    If they were to say "We'll do one for free" I wouldn't have an issue, it's disingenuous marketing ("You won! Along with everyone else that signed up!") that I can't stand.

    I would try to convince your mom to let you try first. Tell her it's an investment in your education/hobby.
     
  6. Alex_B

    Alex_B No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    why? ;) be polite, be sarcastic, use irony ... make the fools look even more like fools ... but always stay polite and smile at them so they feel very small in the end :) :)
     
  7. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I think Neea is in a smaller town/city, so I don't think this was a 'big scam'...it's just a method of advertising. I've seen it recommended as a way of getting your name out.

    As long as this person is actually giving something away, as advertised...I don't really see a problem.

    The part I don't like, is the way she treated Neea on the phone and seemed to be calling repeatedly. Some might call it persistent salesmanship...others will call it annoying. Either way, I agree with Jim, bad customer service will eventually catch up...especially in a smaller town.
     
  8. Jim Gratiot

    Jim Gratiot TPF Noob!

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    If you're looking to become a big-name photographer... the two will be inseparable. The whole "all publicity is good publicity" isn't always true... especially in a smaller town... and you definitely don't want to get a bad name just because you ticked off a potentially vindictive (and competing) photographer... the damage is too often inreparable.

    Let us know how the potrait session goes. Behave yourself. ;)
     
  9. Alex_B

    Alex_B No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    righr, only works for celebrities ...

    that is why i say stay polite, but even being polite one can be very cruel ... at least that would be my approach.

    oh, and i hate aggressive phoning to sell something.
     
  10. ashleysmithd

    ashleysmithd TPF Noob!

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    That's the world of photography as far as I'm concerned...

    You get the professionals
    And then you get the people who think they are professionals (and they're normally complete snobs)

    I work in jessops, and I'm so sick and tired of photographers coming in with great big lenses and egos so high up in the clouds they need to alert air traffic control when walking to their car and back.
     
  11. neea

    neea TPF Noob!

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    :lmao:

    I don't think it's too big of a scam. Our last family portrait (about 11 years ago) was the same thing, my mom 'won' it at the local fair. You get one free picture (the one where you're blinking or saying 'wait im not ready') and for a sale price of $999.99 you could buy the one where you look like a super star :D (although i dont think they have enough skills to make me or my family look like super stars. haha)

    I will most likely say something like Alex B said. Something that's polite and lets them know I know about photography but in a way that makes them feel like idiots. Even better is when you make a fool of someone and they aren't even smart enough to realize it :wink:

    Apparently the lady hasn't called back yet to set up a time yet. It'll be interesting to see if she even does after my moms comment about her rudeness.

    I will definatley keep you all posted on how it goes. If the pictures are as horrible as I expect them to be I will politley ask if they mind if I post it on my personal website so our family from out of town can see ;)
     
  12. xfloggingkylex

    xfloggingkylex TPF Noob!

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    Just be as nice as you can and make sure that anyone in the area knows you are a photographer as well (dont make it too obvious though, like talking about it non stop). If other people are around they will see your style and compare it to the mall group, and it should be a clear cut decision.

    While it is aggravating and I'd probably want nothing more than to choke the person calling, take it as a learning opportunity of exactly what NOT to do.
     

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