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Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographers - SWPP and BPPATHE Maestri in Rome

Saturday 1st November 2014  GMT 


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MARKET RESEARCH 

Whilst your enthusiasm and determination to succeed are essential and admirable you shouldn’t let them cloud your judgment when it comes to marketing the product i.e. persuading the right people to buy at the right price.

Market research sounds dull and expensive but it needn’t be. Before you rush out and start trying to sell your product or yourself, consider the following:

Research yourself, what are your strengths and weaknesses? What aspects of the business can you do yourself and what do you need help with?

Who are your customers? Do you know where and how they live, their sex, age, tasks, willingness to try new things? You may have several types of customer, or target markets; try to visualise them as real people.

Research the competition by looking through trade magazines, directories and your competitors literature.

Is the market sensitive to price or is quality more important? What price will your consumers except to pay accept as fair and

reasonable? Can you make a profit at that price?

Is the demand steady, or is it seasonable, cyclical, local, national.

What is special about you and/or your product/service? Is it cheaper, faster, better quality, longer lasting etc?

THE CUSTOMER

How do your customers perceive you and why do they buy from you?

Use this knowledge to keep customers coming back for more.

A customer is a perishable commodity, and each customer has a different shelf life.

The aim of any business is to extend that shelf life, the longer you keep the customers the more money you make from them.

DISCOVER

The first step in keeping customers is to know why they have chosen you, rather than your competitors. Don’t your simply selling a product - that’s not all your customers buy.

They are also buying your service.

Then, you can use this knowledge to reinforce your perceived competitive strengths,

 

MARKET RESEARCH

Whilst your enthusiasm and determination to succeed are essential and admirable you shouldn’t let them cloud your judgment when it comes to marketing the product i.e. persuading the right people to buy at the right price.

Market research sounds dull and expensive but it needn’t be. Before you rush out and start trying to sell your product or yourself, consider the following:

Research yourself, what are your strengths and weaknesses? What aspects of the business can you do yourself and what do you need help with?

Who are your customers? Do you know where and how they live, their sex, age, tasks, willingness to try new things? You may have several types of customer, or target markets; try to visualise them as real people.

Research the competition by looking through trade magazines, directories and your competitors literature.

Is the market sensitive to price or is quality more important? What price will your consumers except to pay accept as fair and

reasonable? Can you make a profit at that price?

Is the demand steady, or is it seasonable, cyclical, local, national.

What is special about you and/or your product/service? Is it cheaper, faster, better quality, longer lasting etc?

THE CUSTOMER

How do your customers perceive you and why do they buy from you?

Use this knowledge to keep customers coming back for more.

A customer is a perishable commodity, and each customer has a different shelf life.

The aim of any business is to extend that shelf life, the longer you keep the customers the more money you make from them.

DISCOVER

The first step in keeping customers is to know why they have chosen you, rather than your competitors. Don’t your simply selling a product - that’s not all your customers buy.

They are also buying your service.

Then, you can use this knowledge to reinforce your perceived competitive strengths,

FEEDBACK CAN HELP YOUR BUSINESS

Encouraging feedback has important advantages. It does the following for you:-

Informs you of your customers future plans and needs so you can adapt your products to meet them.

Allows you to look at your business through your customers eyes. What would you think? Would you do business with you?

Helps you target your service levels more efficiently.

Provides competitive information, helping you to be a consistently strong contender.

Adopting a policy of promoting feedback can be a strong selling point. It shows you have nothing to fear from hearing the truth about you business and product.

In addition to finding out valuable information about how your customers see your company, a survey will increase the customer awareness of your products and services. They will also appreciate your willingness to find out what they think.

For your convenience a typical studio customer survey sheet is enclosed in this unit. You may wish to change and adapt some of the questions to suit your own particular requirements. The important thing is that you realise the value of such a survey and you adapt your business, staff and products to fall in line with your customers requirements.

Please don’t try to run before you are walking! It is important for us to establish the foundations of our business, before trying to build a super-structure.

By following the lead in the above you’ll have a head start in selling your products, as you will be producing and presenting the products that your client is desiring.

Return to Starting your Own Photographic Business Index

 

Photo Quote: These people live again in print as intensely as when their images were captured on old dry plates of sixty years ago... I am walking in their alleys, standing in their rooms and sheds and workshops, looking in and out of their windows. Any they in turn seem to be aware of me. - Ansel Adams