Here we go again

Here is an additional bit of insight that I hope will help…

Answering an e-mail request for a quote.


Please read the entire e-mail before you dump it into the waste bin.

Advertising is the necessary evil that all companies must endure, there really is no way around it. The only decisions we have to make are what kind and how much can we afford to spend. Decisions that no one undertakes lightly. We have all seen the home made ads on television. The type that use the owners kids, fail miserably regardless of how cute they are and make us feel a bit sorry or sad for the company. Advertising is the only link we have to our target markets. Until we make the first sale our advertising is what will separate us from the competition. I probably don’t need to tell you any of this and even though I produce advertising I very often have to be reminded of it when I am advertising my own business. What will it look like, what will it say and most importantly how much will it cost? Does my advertising say that I am a major player with global market share or a mom and pop shop that will service the local markets? Everything we give our perspective clients creates an opportunity for us to achieve one thing. That thing is perception. Our advertising gives our target market a very specific perception of who we are, what we do and how we do it. Do we have to spend gobs of money to do this? NO! But it’s not free either.

Which brings us to the next segment of our program…

I will be happy to quote on your project but I have a few questions before I can.

1. What is the size of the smallest product and what is the size of the largest?
2. What type of material are they made out of?
3. Can I put them onto a table top to shoot them?
4. What type of background do you want for them?
5. What type of advertising will you be using them for?
6. How large do you expect them to be viewed?
7. Will they be stripped out of the background and do you expect the photographer to deliver them that way?
8. Will the photographer be handling the retouching or just the post production processing?

For every 2 hours we spend shooting there is about 1 additional hour for processing the images for your usage.

50 items divided into an 8 hour day less time for set up, about 1 hour, and break down, about 1/2 hour,  lunch, about 1/2 hour, leaving 6 hours of actual shooting time is about 7.2 minutes per image. Not much time to do the job properly but plenty of opportunities to make a mistake because we are rushing and constantly watching the clock.

I would be happy to meet with you at your warehouse to get a better idea of how best to produce your project. Once I have this information I can give you a detailed estimate for the entire job.




About Jack Foley

Beginning my journey in the film lab business many years ago and was lucky to have some great bosses who were also great teachers. They gave me a priceless education into what happens to film during the back end, which in turn taught me, how to be a better photographer. Being a bit of a nerd I moved to digital capture pretty quickly and have never looked back. I do miss those long quite days in my darkroom, but I don't miss the toxic chemicals we used. I have shot everything form weddings to high end fashion advertising and loved most of it equally. I also teach at the Center for Digital Arts and am currently working on a new body of work that will, hopefully, inspire some and become many of this blogs topics.
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2 Responses to Here we go again

  1. Jerry Fox says:

    In an ideal world I believe all you have said to be the truth. BUT!!!!!!Realistic, and to me it looks like the balance of power has moved from supplier, i.e. you, to the client. They now realise they can get it done cheap so thats what they want. I see some photographers are continually busy, rushing around all over the world shooting almost continually. These celebrity shooters will do that till they disappear out of focus. As for the rest, They have gone the same as art director/programmer. It’s not easy to be one without the capability of being the other. Welcome to the 21st century. This is why there are so many unemployed. They out lived there jobs.

    • Jack Foley says:

      So, I am no longer a creative choice but a financial choice. Then what is the point? If someone wants creative services but chooses the financial alternative then they really didn’t want creative services to begin with. What we must do if we are to survive is to align ourselves with the clients that understand that we offer something that not anyone can do. Is this harder than just accepting what the buyers have to offer? Of course it is but that is just the way things are now. It is happening all over the world in every industry and is not just limited to our us. Will there always be buyers willing to troll the bottom of the creative barrel based solely on price. YES. This is not news. Our job is to try and be better than the bottom feeders with our creativity and service. Delivering a better product than the wanna-be generation of photographers. Help the ‘could be clients’ see the real value in better images, design and advertising. With a little education we can see those ‘could be clients’ becoming valued, long term clients and as their businesses grow through the execution of clever, insightful advertising supported by quality photography and design.

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