how long to deliver proofs to your clients?

Discussion in 'The Professional Gallery' started by emogirl, Feb 21, 2007.

  1. emogirl

    emogirl TPF Noob!

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    After reading the thread about the couple duped by the wedding photographer - I thought it might be interesting to see how long the rest of you take to deliver wedding proofs to clients. What is 'normal'....how long do you make customers wait?

    Personally, I have clients albums ready with 2 weeks. I make it my number one priority to edit pics within a couple of days of the ceremony and get them off to my printers, which are a local pro shop with all the amentities. I have my finished prints within 4-5 days, then i sort into an album ready for the clients viewing. Same goes for enlargements/reprint orders...these are ready within 2 weeks, most of the time. I have been dong it this way for 14 years. I have built a good reputation for reliablity, service and quality of work.
    Locally there is also a world class photographer whose work is absolutely beautiful, but takes approx 6 mos to deliver proofs. I just dont understand that....and why he retains such a great reputation when the business side of things is so slow.

    anyway...interested to see what the rest of you do.
     
  2. Cuervo79

    Cuervo79 Guest

    I do same as you a week or 2 at the most depending on the number of photos.
    What I guess about your comment on the "world class" photographer, is 1 because of his reputation he can have that luxury, 2 he has so many clients the work is too much.
    I personally think that if you snooze you lose.
    O I forgot, and to the question, why does he still retain his reputation? Because the competition has let him.
     
  3. emogirl

    emogirl TPF Noob!

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    Cuervo....Interesting, how do you think the competition lets him retain his reputation?? I guess you are right, if I' am saying how good he is....maybe I am letting him retain his reputation. Interesting thought.

    I dont doubt that yes, the busier you are, the longer it will take to get your proofing done and delivered to clients, however, how long is too long....6 mos is a rather excessive. I do weddings every weekend, along with family portraits etc... i still manage to get my work out to clients..i'm no fool, 2/3 of my fee is paid in advance of the wedding, the balance is due when they pick up their album - the sooner i get it done, the sooner i get paid.

    I suppose a question to clients...why would you want to wait that long?
     
  4. Big Mike

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

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    I have seen and heard of many clients/photographers that don't get it done for months or even years afterward. I agree that 6 months is way too long for the clients to wait...but I've seen where a proof book or something is given to the clients...and they don't make an order for years....so what's the use of rushing to give it to them?

    Whatever has been paid for, should be a priority. So if the client has ordered so many prints, or an album or a set of proofs...then it should be delivered ASAP...which might reasonably take a few weeks. However, I can see where newlywed clients will put off paying anymore after the wedding. The first year of marriage is often a time when couples try to figure out their financing and photos may be down on the list.

    Going back to your competition...maybe you should advertise your quick turnaround...or at least make it a prominent point when meeting potential clients. If you competition isn't loosing business because of the long turnround...then why change?
     
  5. emogirl

    emogirl TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for your input bigmike..i do make it a point to tell my clients that my turnaround is quick...another big reason my business is successful. People do often wait 6-9 mos. to order prints/albums..but that is no reason not to give what they have paid for.....

    .I guess my other question i should have said in my initial post was.....if it takes a photographer 6 mos (or even 3 or 4 months) to deliver proofs....why????? what the heck where you doing with them??? roflol I have never understand that.
     
  6. Big Mike

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

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    I guess it depends on the work load and the work ethic of the photographer in question.

    I know of photographers who spend 20 to 30 hours editing for a wedding shoot. With one wedding a week, and no other full time employment...that leaves plenty of time...but if the photographer is busy with other work then things may get backed up. If they shoot more than one wedding a week...then that's just more of a bottle neck.

    That being said...it's up to the photographer to run their business. If they can't deliver the product in a timely fashion...then maybe they shouldn't take so much work.

    I think a fair number of wedding photographers are 'part time' and have day jobs during the week...but I think that we can leave them out of the question for the purpose of this discussion.

    I guess the real answer is that there just isn't a that much of a demand for a quick turnaround...because if there was...the slowpokes would be out of business. I suppose the general public accepts that it takes a while and they don't make that a big part of choosing a photographer. Who knows? :scratch:
     

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