Being a professional photographer is more than just being able to take good photographs. You must be good with people and you have to be very good when dealing with clients. They are the ones who will keep you in business so customer service is everything!
Type of Clients
There are all kinds of people in this world and you can end up working with any one of them! Some clients are friendly, some are difficult, some know exactly what they want, and some don’t have a clue.
Whenever possible speak to your client before you are booked for a job and gauge what is required of you and if you can do it. Although it’s good to challenge yourself, sometimes there will be projects that just aren’t suited to you – be honest if you feel that you can’t to a job because you are not up to it otherwise you will waste both of your time.
When dealing with a friendly easy going client, make sure you still keep things professional. Be efficient and friendly back but try not to become too chummy or blurring the lines between being a friend and hired help.
When dealing with someone who is difficult and doesn’t know what they want, it can be hard to know what to do. Thee kinds of clients may come back to you and keep saying that they are not happy with the results but don’t know what is wrong with the images. If this is the case you need to sit down with the customer and decide exactly what needs to change. If a client doesn’t know what they want it is nearly impossible for you to create the ‘right’ image.
You should always sit down with a client and draw up a contract and a plan of what is going to happen. Its important that you have something in writing to say that you are going to achieve with your session just in case the scope of the job changes – make a note of how many reshoots are allowed and if this does happen, who covers the cost of expenses.
If a Client is unhappy
Everyone will have to deal with an unhappy client sometimes. If this happens then you need to think about the best way to rectify the problem. Try not to be depressed about it but see it as a chance to improve on your work so that your client will go away 100% happy with what has been done.
Address exactly what they think is wrong and see how things can be adjusted and changed in the future. Make sure you have a clear time frame for the changes and any additional costs are listed.