Handing Over the Wedding Proofs
Make Sure Your Proofs Are Top Notch
Wedding Proofs – This is the scary bit. Even though you have done the best you can, the images look great and you are over the moon with them, there is always that niggling feeling that they may not like them.
Maybe it is a personal thing with me and my confidence but I guess I would rather be that way than over confident.
As soon as the proofs are ready, you can do one of two things. Either get them online (and password protect them if that is what you agreed) or present them in a nice folder, box or album. Call the couple and arrange to meet, unless you need to post them. You could also show them digital proofs via a tablet or slideshow (gets more sales : )
Don’t sit on them for weeks whilst you work on other things. The minute they are ready, even if earlier than agreed, get them to the couple as soon as possible.
This attitude keeps your workflow moving nicely and efficiently meaning you are more organised.
Then you meet the couple.
How will you show the wedding proofs?
There are many ways to show your proofs depending on how and where you work.
Many of my clients for example were overseas which made it difficult to hand over in person. I usually get them online within a password protected "album" and post the link via email.
Note: Remember to watermark your images and keep them low resolution to prevent theft. It happens believe me.
I also sometimes print off a large, contact sheet book of all images. Then have it made into a ring bound booklet with reference numbers, a nice photo on the front page and a plastic cover for protection. Most print shops do this for under €5. Cheap and cheerful but it can look good.
If you want to be the ultimate pro, you can present the printed 6" x 4" wedding proofs in a professional, leather/leather look album which they can keep (either pre-paid before the wedding or as an after sale).
Lastly, there is a great way of getting some serious after sales whilst presenting your beautiful images in person to the entire family. That is to invest in a decent, high quality projector.
Why not make a day of it? Get the couple to invite their immediate family and bridal party round to theirs for lunch or something. If you are lucky enough to have a studio/viewing room, have the viewing there?
Explain that the images can be ordered at this point and make sure everyone has a pen and paper.
Pre-organise your wedding proofs into a seamless slideshow with reference numbers. Have enough time in between each shot for them to write the numbers down. Also have the remote handy if anyone wants to pause or rewind. However, I suggest that you show the entire collection once without stopping, and then show it again with the pause/rewind available.
A great way to create and organise your proofs is with Mike D’s Photoshop Proofmaker. This will save hours of your time with features that Photoshop Actions cannot do.
Minor Complaints with Wedding Proofs
Note: The chances are that you will come across a situation where the wedding couple (or anyone else in the viewing party) have minor complaints such as:
Whatever minor quibbles they have, see if you can do anything post processing for them. Even if it takes a little time. Anything more and you should kindly explain that you will have to charge for this as it takes quite a while.
I have straightened/brushed hair and even removed guests from group shots in the past. It takes practice to get it right but it all helps with your reputation in the long run. Also, learn from your mistakes, we all make them. Even though you prepare all you can, on the day things can go quite differently.
The actual wedding day will sometimes run far from smooth and try as you may, shots will be missed on occasion. Try to explain this to the couple before you leave the wedding so there are no surprises when it comes to handing over the proofs.
Hopefully at the end of your presentation you should receive praise and thanks along with a healthy order. If you sent by post it is great when you get that phone call or email from an ecstatic bride. I have even had them call me in tears (of joy I might add) which is a fantastic feeling. It makes it all the more enjoyable.
So, you have shown the wedding proofs, everyone is happy and now you need to make the final albums or slideshows up!