HOW TO TURNS LEADS INTO CLIENTS
You have a lead come in, now what?
What are some steps you can take to turn that lead into a booking?
Reply right away
I mean RIGHT AWAY.
When a potential client reaches out to you, they are excited to have made an important choice.
By responding right away you will capitalize on this enthusiasm.
Not only that, but it will seem very professional, and show that you care.
As well, you are getting the edge on your competition, who may delay in responding and miss out on a potential lead.
Have an amazing THANK YOU page
This is tied to the point above…
Once they hit ‘submit’ on the inquiry form, you should give them a little more than a text box that says ‘the form has been submitted'.
Redirect to a ‘Thank You’ page, where they can see some images, maybe watch a video from you, and more.
This is a great place to share links to your social media, or offer them some bonus material (ie: posing guide, what to wear, etc).
This way you can hold their attention for a little longer, and they can get to know you even more.
Sometimes clients are sending out a bunch of inquiries, and they may not get around to replying to your first reply.
Don’t give up!
Send a second reply a few days later. Then a third a few days after that!
Usually I will do three follow ups, and the last one is usually stating that it is the last one I’ll be sending, so if they don’t reply then that is it.
I’ve had many leads not get back to me on the first reply.
Do you have studio/client management software?
If you are handling a lot of clients & inquiries, you should!
Don’t let leads slip through the crack because you forgot to reply to a lead, or didn’t follow up…
Studio management software can automate replies, and schedule tasks (like follow up emails).
It is truly a game changer, and once you start using it you will wonder how you got by without it!
Talk to them
Many inquiries just want pricing. I get it. They want to know if you are in their price range, and not waste their time.
I used to just send pricing back in an email, and a lot of inquiries ended there.
Now with any inquiry I get, my first reply is to ask to either set up an in-person meeting, or at least a phone chat.
Before they see my pricing, I want the chance to get to talk to them.
This has totally changed my booking rate for the better!
Clients can get a sense of my personality, and we can get to know one another a little bit this way.
For example, with wedding clients I can ask a lot of questions about their plans for the day, and get a sense of what they are looking for.
It gives me a chance to discuss my services, and I can also share some ideas with them in regards to planning their day. We are experts in the field, and they often have a lot of questions about the process! Most clients finish this first conversation with a feeling of having all their questions answered (& more), and then I send them my pricing from there.
Ask questions & take notes
Related to the last point about talking to them…Be sure to ask good questions, and importantly: take good notes!
When you follow up, you can show that you were paying attention.
This can be simple things such as the wedding venue, or more detailed information such as how they met, or if they have any pets!
People want to feel special, this is natural, and everyone appreciates someone who shows that they listen and care.
This is important.
Many people don’t like talking about money, or what they sell.
You need to know what you are offering, and be confident about it.
And be very clear about setting client expectations.
No one likes surprises, and so be sure to explain the entire process very clearly.
Explain next steps, payment plans, schedules, everything.
Use your studio management software to help you by sending out reminder emails when important dates are coming up.
Ask for reviews
You had a great client, and a great session, and they loved your work. Awesome!
Now is the perfect time to ask for a review.
Send them a nice thank you, and a link to your Facebook or Google page where they can share a review.
And you can ask them for referrals also. Let them know that word of mouth helps your business, and if they enjoyed the service from you then they surely will be happy to do so.
Some photographers even have referral programs, where clients can get discounts or free sessions for sending new clients by referral. You can even create special coupons fo this.
This is important, as potential leads often rely on good reviews. I’ve heard it on many occasions from clients who saw greta reviews online and that is what prompted them to make a booking inquiry.
You’ve done all the other important work, now it is time to send over your pricing.
But don’t just send over a basic one page pricing sheet…make it a pricing guide!
People generally prefer visual content, so include images.
Add in some reviews, a little bit about yourself, & share some valuable information about the process of the day, and you have a pricing guide that will help sell your services!
Turn your existing clients into new leads
You’ve done a session with them, and they loved your work.
Make this an opportunity to turn your client into a repeat client!
If you photographed their wedding, remember their wedding date, and send them a little card, gift, or photo on their anniversary.
Birthdays are a good time to remind them about your work also. Post a throwback to their session on social media.
Having a newsletter is also a fantastic way to be sure your existing clients remember to book again with you, by getting your name into their inbox! You can share promotions, or just great reasons for them to want to set up another session.
My favourite clients are the ones I get to work with again & again.