Ever Tried to Make an Unsolicited Photo Sale?

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by astrostu, Apr 15, 2008.

  1. astrostu

    astrostu Guest

    This could be a weird question, but ... my apartment complex has a website. On the site, there are a few photos (here). However, as I'm sure you can tell if you take a look, the photos are not very good (to be incredibly diplomatic). I also don't think they show the complex very well, nor the apartment interiors.

    So I've been thinking about going down to the main office and asking if they would like me to take some photos of the complex and, if they like them then they could buy them from me. Or I could take some exterior shots and bring them for display purposes, see if they want to use them, and then maybe they'd have me do some interiors.

    But, the practical side of me says, "You're trying to sell these photographs to people who may not want them, and unless you phrase it just right - since you lack any tact - it's going to come off as arrogant and condescending."

    The two people in the front office are very nice, and have worked here for years, one of them for 30 years. They bake cookies for Christmas and give them to residents, and the younger one - my age - knows that I "do" photography and have sold photos before.

    So ... does this seem like something I should try to pursue? If so, how? And if so, what should I be looking for in terms of compensation? Again, the practical side of me is saying that I should be happy with pretty much any monetary amount since I'm not an established photographer and I'm trying to convince them to buy something from me when they may think what they have is good enough already.

    Sorry, I guess I'm rambling. You get the idea of the situation and what I'm asking ... let me know what you think. :)
     
  2. jlykins

    jlykins TPF Noob!

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    It never hurts to ask. You could say something to the effect of " the photos on your website just aren't doing this complex justice, I could take some shots for you and if you like them we can work something out." Hell even if they trade you a free month or two in exchange instead of money. This way they're not really out any money, and you're getting something out of the deal. You could do a couple of shots to show them how much better they look than what they have on the website just so they have an example to see before you go taking lots of pics.
     
  3. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Personally I would do half the job and just give them to them, and walk away with out another word. Maybe if they like them they may commission you for the other half. That is my thought.
     
  4. JIP

    JIP No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Moves like this are the difference between a photographer who makes real money and a photographer who makes a few bucks on the side. Hustling and selling yourself are the key to photography my friend you should kick yourself if you do not take advantage of this great opportunity.
     
  5. twocolor

    twocolor No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I was soliciting a donation from a local bed and breakfast for an upcoming fundraiser we were doing. In researching his b&b, I looked at his website and noticed how the pics on his site weren't doing anything for his business.

    AFTER he gave us a $150 donation of a one nights stay, I referred him to my web site, and told him I would like to thank him for his donation by taking some pictures of his b&b that he could post on his site.

    He was very grateful since he had taken the pics himself and couldn't afford the rates of a professional photographer. We did the shoot, and I feel that both of us came away happy!
     
  6. AprilRamone

    AprilRamone TPF Noob!

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    JIP is 100% right.
    Too many people think they can just throw up a website and get some business cards printed and think the business will just eventually come pouring in all by itself.
    You have to HUSTLE to make $ in this biz!
    For example, I wanted to try and fill in some of my income with youth sports photography since it's fairly easy and a decent amount of $ can be made in one shoot. So, I started searcing for youth sports teams.
    I get a ton of rejections, but I also called one youth soccer league and they are actually in the process of possibly switching photographers and I just happened to call at the right time to get my bid in. I may or may not get it, but the point is that if I hadn't been actively searching out opportunities, I would never have found out about this.

    Do I like making cold calls and getting rejections? Hello no! But, this job is almost more about sales than it is about photography and I have to do things I don't like to be successful. Plus the more I do it, the more successful I'm getting to be.
     
  7. astrostu

    astrostu Guest

    Thanks for the input, folks. I think what I'll do is once we get some nice days here (should be soon ...) I'll find a good spot, shoot some photos, get them printed up for free (have a coupon for Costco) and I'll bring them to the office and see what they think.

    I'm curious, though - what do you think would be a reasonable payment? $100 for outside photos? $25 per photo? I really have no basis for how this would/should be priced.
     

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