For those of you who haven’t heard about it, in person sales (or IPS for short) is simply a way of selling your products. Typically, in an IPS model, you would have an in person or phone consultation prior to your session to discuss the look of the session and what your client is hoping to get out of the session. You then hold your normal photography session and edit the images.
Read more: How to Price Your Photography
Instead of just delivering a USB or uploading a gallery, you have a viewing and ordering appointment where clients view their images for the first time. You get to see what images they LOVE just by watching their reactions (this is my favorite part). You then go through and help them select favorites, pick their product, and place their order.
I’m sure you have your own opinions of in person sales, good and bad. I want to explain some parts of IPS that you may not have previously considered. So, let’s debunk some of those IPS Myths.
- No.01Myth - You can't sell digitals
I get it. Everyone wants digitals. In person sales does not mean that you cannot sell digital images, it means that you sell those digital images in person. I know quite a few photographers who have a very successful IPS business with digital packages.
Some of these photographers make upwards of $1500 on just their digital images, and sell product on top of that. So yes, you can sell only digital images if you choose.
- No.02Myth - Clients prefer to view images online
They don’t, they only think they do. IPS is really about the client experience and customer service. People want an online gallery because that’s what they know. It’s fast and easy, but we are not in a one size fits all industry.
Your client hasn’t had someone come into their home, show them a beautiful slideshow of their image gallery set to the perfect music, and help to design walls in their house with these gorgeous images. After reading that, which would you rather have?
Your client most likely doesn’t know much about photography or design. They think an 8×10 is a large print, and an 11×14 is enormous. You and I know how piddly that little 8×10 will look, and that they really need a 20×30 displayed over their fireplace. Could you explain that by email? Have you ever sold a 20×30 in an online gallery?
There are some phenomenal products out there specifically for IPS photographers. I have an app on my iPad where I take a photo of a wall in a client’s home, and then show them various options with prints and canvases of THEIR images on THEIR walls. It sells those large products every time.
- No.03Myth - I can’t do that many IPS sessions…I have a family!
You must look at this from a different perspective. You are thinking about IPS with how many sessions you are shooting now. But with IPS and a profitable price, you take on less clients and make more money.
Once I started with IPS and changed my pricing, I didn’t have 18 IPS Viewing and Ordering Session a month, I only needed 4. Which would take you more time…photographing, editing, and delivering 18 sessions per month. Or doing that for only 4 clients a month with an additional hour or so for your IPS meeting? For me, it saved me over 50 hours each month.
I get more time with my family today and increased my income because of my switch to in person sales.
- No.04Myth - People won't pay high prices in my area
Don’t make excuses to avoid change.
I know a photographer in the middle of nowhere Iowa. Her average IPS session is over $2,000. If SHE can make that in a cornfield, you can do it wherever you are.