Ways to market brides for photography?

Started Mar 23, 2013 | Discussions thread
Craig Veteran Member • Posts: 5,916
Re: Ways to market brides for photography?

PenguinPhotoCo wrote:

Yeah, you need to define 'brides'.
I shot a wedding with a friend in the city last night - the reception, hall and food, cost $40,000. (asked the manager). Photog bill was $3900 (shoot, edit, disk, picatge -no hard product) They have spent 6 years marketing and their cost per wedding in marketing costs is nearly $500. Pricey- VERY pricey IMO - and they agree. They rented and remodeled a space in a very trendy (with young singles, artsy area too) for an office. Adds $10k to their costs, at least. And all they use it for is to meet brides. But they found it increased sales of higher priced weddings.
If you're after the $1000 bride you can meet at starbucks and probably be OK.
Bridal shows are often good placed to find brides - and you get a list of brides that attended.
Making relationships with venues that fit your style/market segment helps too. Get on their referral list if you can.
Unfortunately today there are WAY WAY WAY too many photographers for the size of the market. My local pizza shop has FIVE photographers' ads on their little entrance table. This is a town of 4500 people TOTAL.

The marraige rate in the US works out to 3.75 weddings per 1000 population. That's an average - where I live it's more older, married people (as opposed to being in an urban, college / new job type area).
So even if you take that figure, there are 17 weddings a year in my town...and 5 photogs actively seeking htem. I know of 4 more than are not on said table. So evenly spread out we each can expect 2 weddings jobs a year.

My city friend has found 423 wedding photographers listed in his county of 1.2 million people. That works out to 4500 weddings...or about 10 per photographer. Still not enough to make a living with, even at $7k a wedding! And since the natl avg spent on a wedding photog is around $2k...
Sorry, hate to burst your bubble, but finding brides is getting to be a losing game. Also remember, that ONE BRIDE can ruin your business by making a comment online.
Go be a DJ instead. Tons of them too, but you can also work bars, dances, proms, etc. and getting setup won't cost more than decent wedding gear. Per hour you make more money too.

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My opinions are my own and not those of DPR or its administration. They carry no 'special' value (except to me of course)


I thought you more positive than what you write here? You said your business is picking up?

I think only those who really are good and know how to market to those with money still are going to make it.. The rest of us that dont measure up can't live off the crumbs in this business anymore.

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