Luminous Landscape Forum

Equipment & Techniques => Pro Business Discussion => Topic started by: joeclarkx on June 10, 2021, 12:00:45 pm

Title: Discounting brainstorm [Architectural photography]
Post by: joeclarkx on June 10, 2021, 12:00:45 pm
GOAL: ATTRACT YOUNGER ARCHITECTS AND SMALLER PROJECTS FROM LARGER ARCHITECTS TO GROW MY BUSINESS IN A NEW MARKET.

MARKET: EUROPE > GERMANY > BERLIN.

POST PANDEMIC I MAY ALSO RESUME WORKING IN THE UK > LONDON

I moved to Germany a few years back and took my foot off the gas for a bit while we started our family and my partner took her turn to be the busy one.

Now, I'm really pushing to grow my client base again and I'm tinkering with my pricing and thinking of a coherent discounting strategy- thus this post.

I think that my current pricing (see attachment) is competitive for bigger projects but I also want to catch younger architects on their way up as well as collect lower value projects from more established architects. With my current pricelist, I aim to get ~1k per half day and ~2k per day (, including post).

My thought at the moment is to offer a discount structure based on overall project value. However I have no idea where I might set my thresholds.

I would be prepared to offer as much as a 50% discount for the very smallest projects.

Any and all feedback welcome.

Some questions I have that you guys may know the answers to:


Obviously I'm pushing joint commissions/cost sharing as an option. Also, architects are obviously not the only group I am addressing. I don't plan to offer the same incentive to developers for example. Any comments on that?

Thanks for reading this far. I appreciate any insight you might have!

Joe

Title: Re: Discounting brainstorm [Architectural photography]
Post by: joeclarkx on June 11, 2021, 08:16:11 am
Just to add to the above, I've been trying to build the discount table that I mentioned: see attached.

Not sure about how I may have my thresholds set. Would love some input.

Thanks
Joe

Title: Re: Discounting brainstorm [Architectural photography]
Post by: Cornfield on June 13, 2021, 07:58:15 am
Discounting is not a good place to start.

I would start with a day rate that covered shooting and all production work.  Simple and straightforward.
Title: Re: Discounting brainstorm [Architectural photography]
Post by: joeclarkx on June 13, 2021, 08:32:00 am
Cornfield, thanks.

I asked this question elsewhere and the main bit of advice that came back was to simplify the pricing as much as possible. I'm going to implement that- probably by including 20 delivered images in my day rate and 10 in my half day rate.

I feel like I'm still missing a piece of the puzzle. Maybe I can't solve it. I'm in a new market and there are definitely clients who can afford my rates that are happy to work with me. However I think it would also help me to grow my network if I could work with young architects on the way up. I do get how discounting can also be unhelpful though of course... *Sigh*
Title: Re: Discounting brainstorm [Architectural photography]
Post by: MichaelKoerner on June 13, 2021, 10:40:40 am
I recently got the advice not to give discounts but to add boni. Perhaps this would be a way to go: "Young clients" get more images included, additional rights, additional shots, an introductory workshop or the like.

I'd also address such offers via discrete channels - f.i. a dedicated instagram business channel, mailings to local universities, cooperation with start up hubs, bak.de...
Title: Re: Discounting brainstorm [Architectural photography]
Post by: Cornfield on June 13, 2021, 06:28:56 pm
There is another way into shooting buildings and that is through commercial property agents. 

When I was shooting commercial work, property agencies that handle a lot of investment properties are a good source of work.  Getting work from these guys will give you an opportunity to get some great portfolio work and earn some money.  One of the agencies I worked for specialised in selling investment properties.  These were often new builds and in great city locations.
Title: Re: Discounting brainstorm [Architectural photography]
Post by: David Eichler on June 26, 2021, 02:59:51 pm
GOAL: ATTRACT YOUNGER ARCHITECTS AND SMALLER PROJECTS FROM LARGER ARCHITECTS TO GROW MY BUSINESS IN A NEW MARKET.

MARKET: EUROPE > GERMANY > BERLIN.

POST PANDEMIC I MAY ALSO RESUME WORKING IN THE UK > LONDON

I moved to Germany a few years back and took my foot off the gas for a bit while we started our family and my partner took her turn to be the busy one.

Now, I'm really pushing to grow my client base again and I'm tinkering with my pricing and thinking of a coherent discounting strategy- thus this post.

I think that my current pricing (see attachment) is competitive for bigger projects but I also want to catch younger architects on their way up as well as collect lower value projects from more established architects. With my current pricelist, I aim to get ~1k per half day and ~2k per day (, including post).

My thought at the moment is to offer a discount structure based on overall project value. However I have no idea where I might set my thresholds.

I would be prepared to offer as much as a 50% discount for the very smallest projects.

Any and all feedback welcome.

Some questions I have that you guys may know the answers to:

  • what percentage might an architect typically take as a fee from the overall project budget?
  • what percentage of their fee do you think architects are happy to spend on photography?
  • are there any resources online that have the answers to these questions already?

Obviously I'm pushing joint commissions/cost sharing as an option. Also, architects are obviously not the only group I am addressing. I don't plan to offer the same incentive to developers for example. Any comments on that?

Thanks for reading this far. I appreciate any insight you might have!

Joe

Rather than discounting something you would normally offer to anyone, how about offering them a scaled-down approach that involves lower production costs for you and imposes some limits on the end-results, without significantly affecting the overall quality of the images. For example, limit the kinds of compositions you will do to ones that are less technically demanding, the times of day you will shoot, the number of images delivered, the amount and range of supplementary lighting used (if any). Also, could offer a discount if they are willing to limit the usage terms, say, for Web collateral usage only.

I will say that your rates would be quite low for a major city in the US. Taxes aside, I am not sure the cost of living here is that different compared with London or Berlin.
Title: Re: Discounting brainstorm [Architectural photography]
Post by: David Eichler on June 26, 2021, 03:07:47 pm
There is another way into shooting buildings and that is through commercial property agents. 

When I was shooting commercial work, property agencies that handle a lot of investment properties are a good source of work.  Getting work from these guys will give you an opportunity to get some great portfolio work and earn some money.  One of the agencies I worked for specialised in selling investment properties.  These were often new builds and in great city locations.
Doesn't sound like the OP is new to architectural photography, just new to a particular market area, and what you are talking about is real estate photography, which is really a different clientele from designers or even high-end developers. Yes, real estate photography generally does entail a lower fee structure, but the quality standards tend to be much lower than for architectural photography, and real estate clients often want compositions that do not favor the design. So, a very different sort of market and product that does not necessarily transfer to architectural photography.