Include Engagement Portrait Sessions In The Wedding Package – Think Again

2 10 2008

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In today’s world its easy to find out what other photographers are charging and offering in their packages. With a quick search, I found the following package deal for wedding photography:

  • Full day coverage, unlimited time, unlimited images
  • Free engagement photography session
  • Digital negatives included
  • Online galleries for ordering
  • Price $2500

This is pretty much the standard wedding package available today.

This is fine if you photograph clients in one location, and all of your clients are from that one location.

But what if you want to become a destination photographer? What if someone is from New York, but will be getting married in Hawaii? What if someone is planning a wedding from Germany, is getting married in Aspen, and won’t be in the States until three days before the wedding?

Let the negotiations begin. Anytime you include a free engagement session in your package, if the bride and groom can’t use it, they’ll start negotiating. Hardly the thing you want happening with a brand new client.

And yet most photographers continue to offer this. Why?

Engagement portraits are personal to the bride and groom. In many ways its a completely separate event from the actual wedding. Many photographers will tell you this is a great way of bringing in a new client. While this may be true, in today’s traveling world, its not nearly as important as it once was.

Instead of making it a part of the package, make it an add on. Make it a reasonable cost – $125 plus expenses. You’ll photograph in your local area, or they can fly you in to their location. Their choice.

You’ve just made some of your clients very happy for a very reasonable price. And you no longer have to go through negotiations with the clients that don’t want or need an engagement session. 

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