You don’t need me to remind you that getting confirmed wedding photography bookings, no matter how long you’ve been in the business, is challenging.
How often have you gone into a sales presentation with a prospect who seemed keen and enthusiastic, only to come out of it feeling let down because they didn’t book you?
It’s annoying and frustrating, not to mention confusing and painful, right?
It’s certainly happened to me more times than I can count, and I know it will undoubtedly happen again in the future.
As hard as rejection can be to deal with, you’re in the people business.
And being able to handle rejection is one of the “necessary evils” that come with the territory.
But what can you do to keep rejection to a minimum?
How can you raise your booking percentages and make each sales presentation count?
Wedding bookings usually start with an email or a telephone call.
Or, perhaps someone you know approaches you directly to ask about photographing a wedding.
Regardless of how it begins, it always leads to a detailed in-person sales presentation.
But some time ago, I realized two important things:
- Nobody books all their prospects…
- The sales presentation is a two-way process…
No Salesperson Closes Them All
This is a simple, but important, fact of being a salesperson.
If you expect to book every single client you meet then you’re destined to be let down.
However, if you calmly accept the fact that you won’t book everyone, it takes some of the pressure off and you can relax a little more.
Ironically, being more relaxed, in itself, can help to raise your booking percentage at least a little because if you’re calm and relaxed, then the prospect is more likely to be that way too.
Who’s Interviewing Whom?
When I started out in the photography business, I viewed every sales presentation almost like a job interview.
It felt like the prospect was simply deciding whether or not to hire me for their “job”.
However, it’s much more than that.
If you accept that you can’t work with everybody, then some prospects will qualify as clients and others won’t.
The sales presentation is a way for you to work out whether the prospect actually qualifies as a client, and to help you decide if you really want to work with them, as much as it is about the client interviewing you.
There are many things that might make a prospect unqualified.
For example, they may not agree to your studio policies or there may be a personality clash.
Perhaps they’re too demanding, or you simply can’t make a genuine connection with them.
The point here is that the sales presentation is a two-way affair.
This makes it a lot easier for you as the salesperson by removing some of the pressure of “having” to make the sale.
But what should a typical sales presentation look like?
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