Thursday, August 23, 2012

Stop Worrying About What Others "In Your Area" are Doing!

We were having a discussion in a Facebook group and I thought I'd share this part of it for readers here.

It seems any time we talk about pricing, someone will say "well, that will never fly in my area" or "in my area, people would never pay those prices", or "in my area, everyone just wants a CD."

"In my area . . . " <sigh>

In my area, there are over 650 registered photographers (with the MN Dept of Revenue).

In my area, there are probably an equal number of students, MWACs and wannabees who own DLSRs, print business cards, have a FB business page and a website and call themselves professional. However, they pay no taxes and do it all "under the table."

In my area, these "professionals" charge anywhere from $100 / up and give a disk . . . and while it frustrates me that I have to constantly explain myself to clients, the bottom line is basic:

"I'm sorry, Ma'am . . . I am in business to make a living. This is how I feed my family, pay my bills, put my kids through college. I'm happy to sell you images on a disk; the first one is $500. The next two are $250 each. You may choose 10 for $1500. (That makes them just $150 each.)"

I'm in business to create awesome images and sell you finished photographs. It is not my mission to be cheap so that I can save someone a buck or two while they print my work at Costco.

I still need to pay my bills and cover my expenses, not to mention put something away for the future.

After spending 28 years with a business partner who almost ran us out of business because he wanted to charge based on what everyone else "in our area" charged, I knew I needed a change. Eight years ago I finally broke free of that and - scared to death - went into my own thing knowing I was going to sink or swim and the only thing standing between the two was me.

I believe that the "area" people are talking about is the space between their ears.

I've stopped caring about what others "in my area" charge. I've started looking after me. I deserve it.

You do too.

- David

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