We're still standing
Wow, what a great year.
That's what I'd be saying if it were a great year but, of course, how do we judge a good year?
How about survival? Yeah that's about right, with a little bit of growth, that's our barometer. In previous years, growth, growth and more growth. In fact, a record year in 2019, with 2020 looking tons better still. C'est la vie as they say in the Dordogne.
So here we are, when others around us have dropped, we are still here, producing great wedding photos, event photos and corporate headshots. Still carpeting Dorset with great professional photos, still producing photographs to be proud of.
And here's a thing, lots and lots of new clients, 10 in the last years global pandemic ridden environment. But growth? just a little.
Now I'd love to think we manufactured our working practices to work perfectly with Covid restrictions, to have thought and planned (nee, predicted Nostrodamus-like) about what the world of running a photography business would be like, really I would; but here's our take on why we are still standing, why we have green shoots coming through when other, very much established photographers, have gone to the wall.
Here's my take
It's a mindset thing. As my colleagues in BNI Dorset say, 'the way you do anything, is the way you do everything' and it's the change in THAT mindset that has to be broken.
I'll give you an example.
Your typical wedding photographer will take a large deposit, say £250, leaving say £750 to pay at a later date (keep that in mind). That deposit is not ring fenced, it'll be spent before your wedding date. It is universally accepted that if the wedding is cancelled, the typical photographer will keep that cash.
But. What if it has to be cancelled through the fault of nobody? such as is in a global pandemic? Legally, the photographer is pretty OK to keep that cash, but morally? What would it say about a company if that is kept?
So, then, the covid affected, cancelled wedding is rebooked to the following year. Guess what, the date is already booked by another bride.
Add to this that most typical wedding photographers will insist on staged payments every few months, so that outstanding £750 may well all be paid three months out from the wedding date. So, instead of losing, in this case, the £250, they lose the full £1000.
No, we don't gamble here at Solid House, it's a mugs game, but we are willing to say that there would be a few strong words and stronger social media comments levelled at the photographer who cannot fulfil a further date, NOR give the full amount back. And to be fair, it's not the photographer's fault either, it's just the whole professional photography gig is full of 'the way you do anything, is the way you do everything', this is how it's always been done. Great for us at Solid as we have NEVER followed the path of others.
Now, for those photographers who decide to give back the cash, how many £1000's can YOUR business afford to pass on? 3-4 before your business comes under strain?
Multiply that by Solid's average wedding coverage per year, which we assume everyone else does, and that is £50k coming out of your bank account, and no small business can stand giving that amount back, can it?
So you asked, what do Solid Imagery do differently from all the other photographers in the world?
We take very small deposit, just £50 to secure the day (we figure that if we can't fulfil a new date, we can give back £50), (by the way, we only lost 1 last year on this basis, and they demanded we kept the deposit)
We also, don't stagger payments or ask for an early settlement, we'd like to be paid a day or two before the wedding date.
And, last of all, we don't book anything and everything just to fill our bank account, we NEVER jam 2 weddings into 1 day, we NEVER employ photographers that we've just met on the internet, therefore, we have scope to uplift postponed weddings during a global pandemic. We are sensible, bottom line.
There you are, we think the reasons we are still standing are above.
And that we are jolly nice chaps and chapesses.
Jolly Nice Chap
Download our wonderful new 2022 Solid - Wedding Guide
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