Episode 58: How I do It: Boost Your Portrait Orders with These 4 Changes

How I do It: Boost Your Portrait Orders with These 4 Changes


Photography Business Institute
Photography Business Institute

Today is a special day because we are celebrating one year of this Joycast.

I want to say thank you to everyone who listened week after week.

If you have a second, I would appreciate it if you go to the iTunes Store and give us a rating and a review.

This is what helps other photographers find us, so they can build their businesses too.

I appreciate you.

Now about today’s episode. 

Being Successful Does Not Mean Being Busy 24/7

I get it.

You envisioned your life as a professional photographer to be full of creativity, freedom, vacations, weekends off, and family time.

I did too when I started my business.

I understand how frustrating it can be when it feels like you are always working and making hardly any money.

I felt like such a bad mom and wife.

I was afraid my kids would grow up and say,

“My mom was always working. She never came to our volleyball games, band concerts, scout activities.” 

The more I worked, the further behind I felt.

I remember thinking,

“Is this just the way life is when you’re a successful photographer?”

All of a sudden, photography was losing its appeal.

However, everything changed when I became boutique. 

I want to share with you how to boost your portrait orders by making these four simple changes.

#1 Serve Hard, Sell Easy

If you serve your clients hard from the first phone call on, there are no hard sales.

If you hold their hand through the entire process, they will want to order and invest in you. 

If you’re using online galleries and thinking your client is going to order a wall portrait, you’re telling yourself a lie.

If you take amazing care of your clients, they will invest in wall portraits, and keep coming back to you.

They will even gush on you and send their friends.

When you serve your clients at a high level, you will never have to be salesy and pushy because your sales will come easily. 

#2 Show Big To Sell Big

If you’re going to get big orders, you need to sell large wall portraits.

And to do that, you have to show what that artwork looks like.

Even if you only have one large sample piece, people need to see it.

I can’t tell you how many photographers come into my Boutique Breakthrough 8-week workshop and don’t have a wall portrait in their own home.

You’ve got to practice what you preach to get bigger portrait orders.

Start there. 

I use the lab White House Custom Color and I trust them with everything.

They have sample sales twice a year, usually in January and July, so get on their email list and be ready to order a sample or two for yourself.

Show big so that you can sell big. 

#3 Meet With Clients Before the Session

This is one of those little things that made a huge difference in getting bigger portrait orders.

I feel so strongly about meeting with my clients before their session that I will not do a session if they refuse to have an in-person consultation.

It’s a deal-breaker for me.

Think about it.

It would be like a doctor agreeing to do surgery without meeting with you first.

I want to look my clients in their eyes and gauge their reactions.

I want to see what gets them excited and show them large scale artwork so they can start getting comfortable with the idea of wall portraits in their home.

#4 Hold Your Client’s Hand During the Ordering Appointment

Not only do we hold their hand before and during the session, I sit with them in person and show them their images.

I want to paint that picture for them by saying things like,

“I see this one in canvas over the sofa where you were looking for a statement piece. I see this one of your little girl in her room with a bright pink gilded frame.”

I make it easy for them to make a decision and they are excited to pull out their wallet.  

It’s a no-brainer for them.

They make a decision, place their order, and are thrilled.

I served them because I have not added picking and ordering images from an online gallery to their to-do list. 

Become Excited About Your Business

Let me tell you what I know.

If you don’t serve your clients at a high level, they will get overwhelmed and frustrated.

When that happens, their order will likely go away.

Then, you’re forced to go into sales pursuit mode, where you’re chasing the client down and they’re avoiding you because they don’t want to make a decision.

It doesn’t have to be that way if you hold their hand and make it easy for them.

Seriously, these steps I gave you took me years to learn and they will change everything for you.

Take control of your business and schedule.

Take vacation when you want, have weekends off, or spend afternoons at the pool splashing with your kids.

Find and connect with the reason that you dreamed of being a photographer and keep rocking it.

This is how got bigger portrait orders and you can, too.

You don’t need more clients, you just need more of the RIGHT clients.

Make these changes and become excited about your business again.

I believe in you.

Episode 221 – What #FamilyFirst Really Means

Family first is our credo, our motto, one of the three pieces of our framework at the Photography Business Institute, and the reason I have taken so many risks in my career when I could have had a nice well-paying, safe job that came with golden handcuffs to my desk....