If you are seriously considering venturing into the Dance school market, or, are already reaping the rewards in this very lucrative market, there is no better time than right now to force a sales effort, and here’s why.
If a dance school/studio had a bad experience with their current photography company during their Spring recital season—typically, from April through June—the pain of that bad experience is still fresh in their mind. Poorly executed images, child-unfriendly photographers, slow package turnaround, long waits in line, a lack of preparedness, and a shoot schedule running nearly an hour late are just a few of the issues with which some dance studios may have had to contend.
Right about this time of year, most dance schools/studios are planning their summer hiatus trying to recover from the chaos and long hours that occur annually with Spring recitals. All the more reason why you should be striking while the iron is hot.
Keep in mind that a dance studio is more similar to a league than a team. A dance school of 250 individual dancers can quickly double the number of individual photo sessions. How can this happen you may ask? Costumes. By photographing individuals in multiple dance costumes you have the opportunity of selling more photographs of each student. I’ll bet you’ve never had the opportunity of photographing a baseball team in three different uniforms! But it happens in dance!
In addition, the school director may have had to distribute the finished prints to angry parents and listen to the same lame customer service story over and over again. This is no way to treat a client! So here are a few tips to consider when marketing your services to a dance school:
Speak only to the studio owner
Spinning your wheels and wasting time with a studio manager or a dance instructor is not time well spent. If your initial visit doesn’t include a conversation with the school owner then get their phone number and set an appointment. Don’t waste time with someone that isn’t the decision maker.
Show them your specialty products
Attitude Panos, Level TwoTM products, and graphic designs created by CCS just for the dance market are all available to you in QuicPost and CORE. Recognize that these products—and others—will open doors for you, and create conversation encouraging your client to listen to what you have to say. Most have not seen products like this before, especially for dance. At one school that our retail division photographed, an additional $1,379 was taken in just on Attitude Panos of “dance company” members.
Also, the recently introduced acrylic products available from CCS make a great presentation and give you the opportunity of displaying a high-end product that will help to raise the price of an average order. Acrylic products are singularly different than anything currently offered in many different photo markets. Make a splash by bringing these products to a formal presentation.
Finally, the newly introduced Freestyle Collage Pano is a great supplement to the bread-and-butter products offered in your basic packages. This new product allows the end customer to create their own Panos and collages using CCS designed backgrounds and graphics.
View First: Your distinct competitive advantage
Using the CCS View First marketing system, with multiple images of each dancer displayed online, you have several advantages that you can sell.
- It’s a no-hassle system – No envelopes to be handed out; no money collected up-front; and all orders are shipped directly to the end customer’s home. You couldn’t make it any easier for those involved with the shoot.
- CHOICE of Poses – Parents prefer the idea of purchasing photos AFTER they’ve had a chance to view their child’s images. With a pre-pay system parents are frequently stuck with photos they don’t like. In View First they get to see ALL images of their child whether it’s individual images, as part of a dance team, or even buddy shots. Typical sales averages for dance school using View First range from $48-$52 per order, with 30-65% ordering.
- Email campaigns – Once you’ve photographed the dance school you can now use the email addresses collected at the shoot (or provided by the school) to remind parents about ordering online. It’s been proven for years that every time an email is transmitted to potential customers there is a spike in sales. An email campaign that spans a six or eight month period does the best job of keeping your name in front of your customers; it also creates the best opportunity for increased sales over a period of time.
CCS Dance Marketing Materials
To aid in your booking of dance schools CCS has created some booking flyers. One version mentions giving the dance studio a commission; another version does not. We have also created flyers to help promote your products and Photo Day. You can find those materials on Candidnet.Candid.com under Marketing/Business development > Marketing Materials> Dance School Flyers. For more information contact Brian Speers at 800-336-4550 ext. 251.