I’m really excited about sharing how I handle consultation calls with potential couples as a wedding photographer! I feel like within the past few months, I’ve finally gotten a feel for what I want to talk about on consultation calls with clients. Before, I felt like I didn’t really have a rhythm or I’d let them decide where the conversation was going. After some calls and discussions with my business coach, I finally figured out where I want to go with these calls and what’s important to me. I’m going to walk you through how I have my calls, and I’m excited to hear how you tweak this process to benefit your clients the most!
Scheduling the Call
To start, when a couple inquires with me, I will respond back with my collections and a big congratulations! I tell them I can’t wait to chat more about their proposal and how they met and from there, I have a link in the email that connects to my calendar via Calendly. If you’ve never used Calendly, it’s awesome! It allows you to set the dates and times you’re available for clients to choose from.
I’ve found this really helps me focus on that time for calls (and nothing else!), and it keeps them from being too spread out all throughout the week. I normally have my consultation calls on Monday afternoon and Wednesday evenings. Being able to see exactly when I’m available helps cut down on the back and forth between me and the client about scheduling a call. It’s super straightforward and gets them on the phone faster, which we all want!!
The Logistics of the Call
Once they schedule the call, I send them a Google Calendar invitation (for an hour long timeslot) and a link to Zoom for the call. This will help remind them when the call is coming up soon, so no one forgets! I will then use Zoom for our actual call (instead of Google Hangouts or Skype). I’ve found it to be the easiest and most convenient for me and my clients! I prefer the convenience of online video meetings and my couples appreciate it too! We can still see each other, talk, and make connections!
Topics for the Call
Before we know it, we’re on the call, chatting away. Although I do make sure my clients have time to talk and ask questions, I generally try to guide the conversation. I move towards certain things I feel are really helpful to know as a couple looking for a wedding photographer. And… I always remind myself: I’m talking to a potential client that has reached out! So, I don’t want to bore them with the awkward money conversation right away! They’re excited to work with me so I love starting out the call being completely personal.
I don’t want to start talking about payments, taxes, or liability insurance. I want to get to know them as a person because I feel like that means way more to them. So I ask them how they are (and listen!). I thank them for taking the time out of their busy schedule to talk with me… because they are busy planning a wedding day! And, once I get them talking, I will have them share about how they met and their proposal. I love hearing both!!
Once they share that, a whole door has often opened up. They start sharing about the wedding day details and it allows me to get to know them and their vision, interests, and who they are. I think they really appreciate that. They often hop on thinking about the costs and pricing, and they have a list of questions ready to go. But I want all of that to go away so that we can get to know each other as people – and a couple excited to get married. I don’t want to feel salesy. Honestly, I want them to know that I care, regardless of whether or not they book me.
My goal is for them to feel like we’re just hanging out, not on consultation calls.
Share a Gallery
After we get to know each other a bit, the next thing I’ll do is tell them about my style (light & airy!) and a bit more about me (I love vibrant colors!). I’ll pull up one of my favorite, full galleries in Zoom’s screen share and share the screen with them, showing the gallery so that they can see what the photos from their day could be like. I’ll go through my favorites from every time of the day so they see – and know my style with no surprises! Being transparent about my work and the end product is really important to me.
Share a Timeline
I’ll also pull up a timeline during our call. My timelines are very detailed. Therefore, I’ve found showing them the timeline plus the gallery allows them to understand why the timeline is valuable. I let them know that I’ll help build their timeline and they won’t have to worry about it themselves. They see that I am taking work off their hands and it’s a relief!!
The Money Conversation
About this time, I will start to walk through my offerings with them. I offer one collection with upgrades (albums, extra coverage, etc.). This is the first time I’m talking about money with them, if you’re tracking!! It took THIS long into the call!! I ask them to share a bit more about their day – like when the ceremony starts, how close is the getting ready space to ceremony, and when the cocktail hour is. As they’re sharing with me, I’m able to begin suggesting how much coverage they need for their wedding day. Even if the details aren’t set in stone yet, I can begin laying things out in my head!
Once I talk through the collections and know a bit more about their day, I will write down the notes about anything that might help me create a draft timeline for them. After our call, I’ll send them at least one timeline to show them how the day might look for them! I start the conversation about timelines on my consultation call because I want to communicate what I need to capture their day well.
At this point, I also show them some of my upgrades, like the parent albums and Legacy albums. I make everything super visual so they don’t have to read and interpret on their own. They can see what they’d potentially invest in.
After the Call
After the call, I send them a thank you email, ALWAYS! Then I’ll do a PS with the email that says I’m creating a draft timeline as we speak and I’ll send it to them shortly. In Google Docs, I’ll then create the bare bones timeline (major aspects only!) and share that with them. If they are torn between coverage options, I will make additional timelines for those too. It allows them to see what I’m really talking about and how helpful the other coverage might be. I want to provide all the resources they need to make their decision.
At that point, the decision is out of my hands. I try to make the choice easy for them because I’m showing how much I LOVE working with my couples. I want to show off the experience and how personal I am because that’s what truly matters to me – and honestly, to them. They want to know they’ll be taken care of.
Make your process streamlined, stress-free, and personal because it really does matter! Consultation calls don’t have to be scary. Enjoy the time getting to know a potential couple, and meeting two new friends!
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