Photographers have long been debating whether or not they should be selling digital files. The demand for digital files is high, but many photographers are hesitant because they fear Clients might misuse the digital images or misinterpret the value of the work they’re paying for. However, if you’re a photographer who has decided to sell digital files (and lets face it, if you’re not, you’re one of the very few), there are a couple of things you should think about to ensure your clients get the most value out of your work.
The first thing to keep in mind when selling digital files is to assign the appropriate value to your work. High-quality digital files give your clients limitless possibilities to print and share their images, so it’s important to price them accordingly. Most photographers found it easier to price themselves when there was a tangible product to assign a price to, now you often feel much more ‘bare’ – you are assigning a price to yourself, your skill, your time, and your reputation with no product to detach yourself from the price. There’s a lot of information out there about how to correctly price digital files, so please read it! Make sure to do your research and find a price point that’s fair to both you and your clients.
One of the most common problems photographers face when selling digital files is that clients often choose to print their images themselves, rather than having them printed professionally. This leads to poor-quality, inaccurate colour prints, that may even be cropped in a way you’d never have dreamed of which reflects poorly on your work. As a photographer, it’s your responsibility to educate your clients on the importance of purchasing high-quality prints. Make sure to recommend professional printing services or offer them yourself and explain the benefits of printing professionally (or read on for our contribution).
Another issue is that Clients will often try to print supplied web-resolution images. I’ve seen it hundreds of times. This can result in prints that are blurry or pixelated, which can be frustrating for both you and your client. The saddest part is when they want enlargements and no longer have access to high-res image files, because their photographer no longer has them or has closed up shop. What options do you have in place for supplying prints or higher-resolution digital files if your Clients decide they want them after the initial sale? Do they know how long you keep a backup of these images? Do you communicate this with your Clients clearly to encourage purchases early on and save disappointment down the track?
If you’re not prepared to offer printing as a service, we have put something in place here at the lab, especially for you. MPP Customer Print Ordering is a retail, online-only version of Streets Imaging that you can recommend to your clients when you hand over your digital files. It’s only accessed exclusively by Customers holding a photographer’s account number. Once they have that, they can order whatever they want, whenever they want, forever more.
One bonus when partnering with MPP Customer Print Ordering is that you’ll receive a 15% commission on all orders placed with your account number. This means that you can make money simply by recommending a printing service to your clients. Additionally, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that your clients are receiving the highest quality prints available. You also get an email notifying you when your clients have ordered…