It is not uncommon that photographers focus intensely on the best ways to book business. We see courses on it, make materials to aid
e in booking and even go on sales calls with some of our customers. But we are rarely asked, “How can I maximize what I am already shooting?”
Booking and photography are frequently focused on to the exclusion of the other steps needed to run a profitable business. To maximize the business you shoot involves selling the most products to the most people possible. Studying your sales funnel will help you accomplish this.
The reality is that a relatively small percentage of potential buyers in a given situation will actually make a purchase. It has always been that way. But you can increase sales by getting more people to buy and/or getting a higher average sale per buyer.
A few examples of buy rate:
At college graduations about 50% or participants buy their picture.
With an average order of $60, this means you average $30 per graduate shot.
If 400 graduates are photographed then your sales would be $12,000.
For stadium fan photography, about 10% of pictures are purchased.
With an average order of $25, this means you average $2.50 per image taken.
If 6,000 images are taken then you can expect sales would be $15,000.
In both of these examples there is a huge opportunity to increase the number of buyers (or maybe even participants in the case of fan photography). There is also an opportunity to increase the average order. Both can have a big impact.
Let’s look at an example of our ONLINE business funnel.
We lose potential buyers at each step. Here are a few reasons why we lose potential buyers:
- not photographed because they were not aware photos were being taken
- not photographed because they did not know when photos were taking place
- can’t be contacted to view images (no email collected)
- lose the password card they are provided at an event & can’t find their images
- don’t open their emails
- don’t click on the email to view the website
- looked at images, but did not buy
- don’t have a good pose to choose
- did not see an appealing product
- “Borrowed” our images instead of buying
- Built an order /created a cart but did not check out
A relative few become actual buyers. But think about the opportunity that brings! Let’s shoot for a very attainable improvement of 2 percentage points in the number of buyers.
An improvement of 2 percentage points in the number of people actually buying can have a huge impact when only 10% buy now!
If only 10% order from an event now – a 2 point increase in the number of buyers is a 20% increase in buyers and sales!
Simply reduce the non-buyers from 90% to 88%. That doesn’t seem too hard.
Since many costs for a given shoot are fixed – this can mean a 46% increase in profit.
Let’s look at a simple example for Shoot A:
Current sales of $10,000 (on a large event with 3K images. 300 or 10% purchasing)
Assume fixed costs of $4,000
Travel – Cost of booking
Photographers – Equipment
Sending out proofs – Office overhead
Assume variable cost is 30% or $3,000
Profit of $3,000
$10,000 – $4,000 – $3,000 = $3,000 profit
If we increase the participants in Shoot A who make a purchase by 2 points:
That’s 20% more buyers and sales (move from 300 buyers to 360 or 12% purchasing)
$2,000 more sales – sales now $12,000
But only $600 more variable cost at 30%
Profit goes up $1,400
Total Profit now is $4,400 versus $3,000
That is a 46% improvement in profit
How do we get this 2 percentage point increase in buyers?
We study the places we lose buyers and we improve at each point.
Understanding the math…..
Book and schedule an event/opportunity. Here are some numbers to think about.
Photograph 75% of all available subjects
Have a way to communicate with 75% of them
75% of them open our emails
75% then click on links and view their images
75% of them are honest and don’t “borrow”
75% of them create an order and cart
75% of them actually complete their order!
Only 13% of original prospects actually buy!
(75% x 75% x 75% x 75% x 75% x 75% x 75% = 13%)
To increase the number of buyers, we must improve at each point in the process.
If you made a 5 percentage point improvement at each step this gives you a much bigger increase than 5%
Check this out !
80% x 80% x 80% x 80% x 80% x 80% x 80% = 27% buy
Now 27% will buy versus 13%!
You will DOUBLE your sales!
You will TRIPLE your profit!
Small actions that impact a lot of people=big change. Think about all of the steps in your process and how you can improve at every turn.
That small 5% difference is why some people make a lot more money than others “doing the same thing.”