When I started The Classic Shoot I remember reading many articles describing the harrowing process of starting a photography business. “It’s not just your photographic skills that will make you successful, you need to work equally hard on business development and customer service” the established photographers echoed. With that in mind I set out from the very beginning to have everything in place for my clients so they would have the most organized and efficient experience I am able to offer.
I wrote my contracts before the first client ever needed one. I made a work schedule with delivery dates and timelines. From my numerous unpaid wedding, studio and casual shoots I was easily able to estimate the time needed to deliver work of my best quality. I mapped out the entire customer journey and each interaction with my clients on paper and things I needed at each stage of the way to get approved, signed or delivered to clients. This has helped me ensure that my clients get their work on time with sufficient time to make it the best work I can possibly deliver. I set up support groups and got to know other photographers so my clients will never be left out in the cold should something untoward happen to me. I acquired backup gear and have friends to borrow from and even planned out where the nearest places I can rent equipment from should all of the above be unavailable to me.
I’m always growing as a person and as a business, that’s why negative feedback is always a good reality check for me. It’s always welcomed because these comments are sometimes indicative of things I haven’t noticed that other clients might not have vocalized but experienced as well. It is also a great chance to redeem myself and to take the service level up a notch.
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