Parents want a copy of the disc - how much should I charge?

Discussion in 'Wedding and Event' started by steve_c.|5, Jun 17, 2009.

  1. The father of the groom from a recent wedding wants to make a photobook as a gift for the couple. He wants about 70 images from the wedding, but doesn't want to ask the couple for the disc, because he doesn't want them to know what he's up to.
    I could do the photobook easily, but it would not generate enough profit to make it worth my time, and he wants to do this himself as a personal gift. I design and sell Graphi albums that start at $800 but he's not in that price catagory.
    I've already given the couple the hi-res images on disc and have been paid in full. The groom's father helped pay for the photography anyway, so in a sense, he already owns part of the photos. I don't feel I should sock it to him on the costs because of this. I have a provision on Zenfolio where they can purchase full-res digital downloads with limited rights of each image for $1.25 each (I've not sold any of these yet, but am testing the market). 70 images would be around $90.
    What should I charge him?
  2. I would just give him the disc and ask that he keep you in mind if he has friends with photograpic needs. The goodwill would be worth it in my opinion. You are only out the cost of the disc, a few minutes to make the disc. You have already been paid for the wedding effort.
  3. I agree with Raymond...just doing it at no charge is worth the impression it leaves.
  4. Ditto Raymonds suggestion. Sometimes saving that $90 could return a HAPPY customer and 10 future customers.
  5. I agree with those above. Write it off to your advertising budget. You could ask him to sign a release only allowing the production of the book in question and ask him to return the disk when finished.<p><p>I do think that you need to make sure that he is aware of your copyright ownership of the images. I don't know what business the couple or their parents are in, but you don't want your images showing up in a magazine or advertisment without your permission and compensation.
  6. One thing to note: when the parent e-mailed me, he mentioned buying a disc from me. Clearly, he expects to pay something for it, since an additional copy was not part of the original contract. I e-mailed him back and said I'd do the disc for him at $60 (a savings over the digital downloads) and would hand-deliver it to him, with the thinking that my time producing the disc, the several hundred images themselves, and delivering it in town is worth something. I may contact him again and just make it a freebie, based on the advice given here.
  7. Just cuz he expects to pay for it doesn't mean you can't give it for free. 60 bux is nothing in the grand scheme of things.
  8. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    Without experiencing the interaction (and the Wedding previously) I think it is difficult to make such definitive statements.
    The Father’s actions indicates he, himself is a “giver”, that is a really nice thought and part of the tangible gift Dad wants to give to the Bride and Groom is his time and effort: the Bride and Groom most likely will remember that, each time they look at the album Dad makes.
    Therefore, whilst I agree that a gift for the Dad is a good idea, I do not agree that giving the disc at no cost is the best gift to give him.
    It seems the Father has an expectation to pay for 70 images. He can do that work himself and it will cost $90. You have offered to do the work, and deliver the goods all with a 30% discount, that is a gift in itself.
    An additional tangible gift would be a framed and signed 10 x 8 print for him (and his wife). He will look at the print every day and remember, just as the Bride and Groom will look at the album Dad makes; the freebie disc, and the 30% discount already offered, will be forgotten over time.
    I think it is important to maintain the value of the work. 30% discount has been already offered, the "downloading" done for nothing and free delivery, that is generous: we must not negate those gifts already offered.
  9. WW makes a strong point, but I still find myself offering it for free. I assume that since you already gave the the couple high rez images, you included a copyright release. You aren't loosing any value that you haven't already given away/sold. Regardless of of who signed the contract/ if he helped pay he's your customer/client too.
    In my opinion this would be treated exactly the same as if a past client requested another copy of their DVD. I don't charge for that (personally, I feel it's another opportunity to impress my client w/ my superior service), but if you do, charge that.
    My vote is meet him, explain how great it was to work w/ him and his family, and tell him you'll waive any kind of fee you'd normally charge, and make sure to give him some business cards w/ the DVD... ALSO give him a card to your weddingwire (or google or whatever)listing, and mention that if he was pleased with your service, you'd hugely appreciate a review.
    If he (or any of his family) refers one additional client (or writes a great review) solely because you didn't nickel and dime him (and beleive it or not, people DO remember that... especially small business men who KNOW that things like that have a tangible and specific cost) It paid for itself in spades.
  10. The father has e-mailed me again and asked where he can send the check, and given me his address to mail the disc (he chose this over a hand delivery). I responded for him just to make the check out for $50 and where to send it. I think WW makes some very valid points (as is his custom). I may include a couple of prints when I ship the disc and a couple of biz cards, along with a nice letter.
    How's that sound?
  11. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    Sounds a good outcome to me: and not because of my previous comments.

    Your letter to the Dad is important.

    The Father reacted in a similar way I would - I reckon he appreciated your effort to dub the images for him; to drop the disc over to him and the $30 discount - he took a similarly relaxed approach and is trusting you, to post it to him.

    He likely took the liberty of referring to you by your first name, when he met you? . . . that is one tell. Another tell is he asked you to call him, Geoff (or whatever) ?

  12. We were on a first name basis throughout. I guess the crux of this discussion is placing a value on one's work, and discriminating between just any relative or wedding guest vs. a parent who helped pay for your services. There are several ways to handle a situation like this, but in the end, we are running a business, and our time/talents are our stock in trade. It's just such a difficult call to make, whether to give something for free in the interest of good will and a marketing opportunity, or charge a nominal fee and be paid willingly (and still take advantage of the marketing opportunity). Thanks to all!
  13. Just give them the disc, especially if the bride already has it.
  14. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    Aside: I so love it when everyone else's comment on a question disagrees 100% with my view: then I know my option is the best one . . . :)
  15. William I have to agree with you. Stating the fact that he knows that it would cost $90 and that he wants to send a check. Surely your time must be worth something, since you are going to be hand delivering it. I would present him with an invoice showing a discount.
    What would you do if her girlfriend called you and said she wanted 70 images.
    Just my 2cents
  16. I wish I knew this when I started::: "If it does not make money, it does not make sense"
    sometimes giving something away may lead to more business,,,,or lead to you having to hand out more freebees
  17. The check arrived today, and a package containing three 8 x 10s (one of his son, one of the couple, and one of a cool groom/groomsman shot), the disc, and a personal thank you letter are going out tomorrow.

Share This Page