The other day, I had a phone consult with an inquiry that was like many other conversations I have had…
Client: “I need a headshot… do you have any openings today or tomorrow?”
I have noticed a strong correlation between timeline and budget. That is, one’s budget is dramatically lower when the service or product is needed “yesterday“.
When an inquiry suggests “ASAP”, their likelihood of booking easily falls somewhere below 25%. In my experience, “ASAP” usually indicates that the inquiry hasn’t put much thought or planning into their need… and they are looking for a quick fix. And that correlates directly with their own perceived value. (Everyone values different things, and that’s cool!)
What’s surprising to me is seeing professionals inquiring to schedule a headshot photo session NOW because they need to submit their headshot TOMORROW. The typical story I hear is that their deadline crept up on them (as if unknowingly) and now they have to rush… and so do I as their potential photographer.
This is my friendly reminder to you my friend…
Have at least one decent portrait of yourself that is current and ready to share upon request.
When it comes to your professional images, I encourage you to be invested in planning your photo (or other visual) needs. Brainstorm, plan, and properly schedule the creation of your image BEFORE you need it. Your newest portraits will represent you and your business for at least the next calendar year… likely longer! (Traditional headshots are usually acceptable for 2-5 years, while companies who invest in branding imagery may update their image more frequently.) The point is… your portrait for the next 1 to 5 years should not be a last-minute effort!
It doesn’t mean you can’t hire a low-budget photographer either – amazing talent is found in every price range. Just remember that price is only one factor to weigh in your photo vendor hiring decision. Preparation, skill, portfolio, communication, and connection are all important in this industry. Carefully considering all these factors will better prepare you to get the most out of your photo session.