Questions To Ask A Wedding Photographer
By Jeffrey House Photography
What my wedding photographer could have done better!
In this article, we are going to show you how to choose a wedding photographer by sharing feedback provided by real brides. This should help you in developing questions to ask a wedding photographer.
There was a great blog article published at the end of 2014 in which 50 brides reveal what their wedding photographers could have done better.
There are certainly common themes you can pull from the article, but one of the most glaring issues revolved around poor communication!
Excellent communication is critical to every business relationship. As a professional wedding photographer, I absolutely must go the extra mile to ensure we understand every couple's specific needs. We must also clearly communicate the appropriate expectations. For instance, if a photographer knows it will take them 10 weeks to edit the couple's images, don't lead them to believe it will take 4. It's not truthful and it only creates a situation that's doomed for failure.
It's Part Of Our DNA
Communication is definitely an area of our business we place a high level of importance, and we have a lot of pride when it comes to our communication style. We want to provide you with a truthful and transparent process in which we actively listen to your needs, and clearly communicate realistic expectations. It's important that everyone is on the same page to ensure we deliver you an excellent experience!
Where Communication Went Wrong
I believe that communication often strays off course because it's viewed from too narrow of a perspective. Let me explain - when we think about communication, it's common to view it as how and what we actually say to others. However, communication is really a process that involves both listening and speaking. Keep in mind, this is a very simple way of defining a complex issue.
Active listening and being able to effectively communicate require great skill. So, let's circle back to the 50 brides and learn where their photographers went wrong with communication.
- The brides expressed their specific "wants" and "needs," however, the photographer never addressed them
- The photographer failed to communicate or didn't clearly communicate many details
- The photographer was untimely or didn't respond at all to emails, phone calls, and text messages
- The photographer did not give enough direction
- The photographer was rude and appeared irritated when it came to customer service related issues
There's one piece of information that's missing from this article and it could play a vital role. How much did these brides spend on their wedding photography?
This is important to know because it would allow us to determine the "type" of photographer that was hired. Whether they were a truly professional wedding photographer, a brand new wedding photographer, or a "cheap" photographer. Obviously, these issues aren't acceptable, but the internet is packed with stories like these from brides who hired "cheap" photographer. This isn't to say that every cheap photographer is guilty of poor communication, but these types of situations will be far more likely.
Sometimes poor communication is due to a simple lack of experience, which could certainly be found with a newer wedding photographer. What's important to takeaway from this is the inherent risks between "cheap" and professional photographers. Professional photographers are business owners, so their reputations are extremely important to them. It also means professional photographers tend to have a genuine care for the overall success of your wedding.
It Can Be A Tricky Situation
One of the top 10 fears of brides is wanting a great photographer, but not understanding what makes a photographer great.
Part of what makes choosing a wedding photographer difficult is the fact it's an emotional decision. Your wedding day is of huge importance, and everyone wants beautiful wedding pictures.
A question I like to ask couples is, "what is it that you're buying when you hire a wedding photographer?"
I almost always hear, "our wedding pictures."
I tend to get a puzzled look when I tell them that's wrong.
When you hire a wedding photographer you are buying their personality, creativity, expertise, technical skills, and an overall experience.
As you already know, any wedding photographer you're considering should be skilled in the art of making pictures. You can view their pictures to determine whether or not you like how they compose their images and how they edit them. Assuming you're comfortable with their style, the most important part of choosing a wedding photographer is their personality!
Remember, you will be spending around 95% of your day with your photographer by your side. If your personality doesn't mix well with theirs, it's going to be a loonnngggggg day! Here's a great rule of thumb for choosing all of your wedding professionals. It's obviously not a guarantee, but it's a great place to start - choose professionals you can imagine being friends with. The more you like your photographer, the more you trust your photographer, the more comfortable you will feel, and this will all lead to successful wedding photography!
Our Approach To Delivering A Great Experience
When we first meet you and sit down to chat we ask a lot of questions. We want to get to know you so we can ensure that we fully understand your needs, your likes, your dislikes, what's most important to you, etc.
We also understand how important it is for you to have an opportunity to get to know us - to see that we are normal people. The last thing you need is to hire some creepy photographer that makes inappropriate jokes all day or just acts like a complete weirdo.
Once we've had a nice conversation and you feel ready to move forward, we review the details of guaranteeing your wedding date. This is followed by one of the more exciting experiences - your engagement session!
The engagement session is immensely beneficial because it allows you to gain experience with our working style, and gain a comfort level with the professional picture making process. It's also great because the session is all about having fun and creating some beautiful pictures that you will love - the mood is relaxed and enjoyable!
The best part...
All of our wedding collections include a complimentary engagement session!
Engagement sessions pay huge dividends when it comes to your wedding photography because you know what to expect, you're familiar with the process, and you're comfortable working with us. You will feel much more at ease during your wedding day pictures.
When it comes to your experience, we simply want you to feel special! We it make it a priority to earn your trust and form a meaningful connection. We accomplish this by demonstrating our great personalities, our genuineness, our trustworthiness, and our professionalism.
We sincerely care about the success of your wedding and your wedding photography. We immerse ourselves into every detail and heartfelt moment that makes up your wedding.