As your photography business grows, there comes a point where you'll want to provide some special offers. How do you put promotional offers together? How many times a year should you do them? In this video, author Skip Cohen walks you through how to create a promotional offer and what components will help make it stand out.
- At some point, as your business grows, you're going to decide you want to put together some special offers. Now, my first recommendation is do one big promotion a quarter. Don't go beyond that. If you start doing a promotion every single time, then nobody's is ever going to buy your products off promotion. So, right off the bat, let's talk about how you're going to put those promotions together. Whether it's quarterly, or you only do once a year or twice a year, it doesn't make any difference, the same components need to be in your offer. Right off the bat, it's got to be easily understood.
I have seen so many offers put together by photographers that when you read them, as a consumer, I couldn't understand what it was that they were offering. Are they offering a free print? Is it a limited time offer? Does it mean I have to come in now and I get a discount? I mean, it's so confusing. So, write it out, and then have somebody in your family read it, and then read it out loud two or three times, and then once you've ready to publish it, read it one more time.
And if you can get another photographer, or another associate to take a look at it, that's even better, because you want to make sure that it's understood. The second point in creating high-impact promotional offers is to have a strong perceived added value. For example, I live in Sarasota, Florida. There's a furniture store that's giving away a 5% discount now. Does 5% get any of us excited, anymore? Especially when, as a consumer, we all believe that everybody's taking the prices up 30 or 40% more than they should be anyway.
So, if we're looking a being a sarcastic consumer, and now we've got a furniture store offering a 5% discount, who cares? So, you want to have strong perceived added value. Whether it's the free goods that you might be giving away, or extended time, in terms of a wedding coverage, whatever it's going to be in your offer, you want it to be understood by the consumers, easily in the way it's written up, and you want them to look at it and say, "Wow, that's a great value." Remember to go with short windows.
You want to create a sense of urgency. If you put an offer there, right now, that said, "All right, this is good through all of 2017." Again, who cares? If you have shorter windows, and fewer promotions, you've got the ability to create a sense of urgency and get consumers interested in what the savings is going to be if they take advantage of your offer. And the last component is what I call the "Wow" factor. Just like the "Wow" factor I talked about a few minutes ago, on the images in your gallery, you want people looking at a promo and going, "Wow! "This is cool.
"I want to do this." You want them sharing it with friends. You want what we used to call, when the internet first started and websites were out there, there was always the concept of sticky features. Meaning, that once someone looked at it, they liked it so much in the content, they shared it with other people. You want to create sticky promotions. You want to create promotions that get handed over from one consumer to another because they're excited about it. You want somebody saying, you want mom sending it to her friend saying, "Did you see this special promotion "over at Skip's studio? "He's doing a special offer right now "on holiday card images," for example, "and this is the perfect time for you to be able to check "in over there and create beautiful holiday cards "using your own images and here's what the special is." That's what you want.
You want the "Wow" factor. You want to create exciting, high-impact promotional offers because there's nothing worse than creating a promotional offer that could put a rock to sleep.
- Understanding revenue
- Looking at target demographics
- Understanding your target audience
- Identifying your real costs
- Deciding which products and services to offer
- Pricing your products
- Working with key suppliers
- Controlling your costs