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Questions about Retouching Businesses

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  #11  
Old 11-19-2002, 09:27 PM
Kathie Kathie is offline
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Thanks Sandra...good idea!
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  #12  
Old 11-19-2002, 09:51 PM
Kathie Kathie is offline
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Why does my full name keep showing up at the end of my posts? It's annoying! How do I change it?
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  #13  
Old 11-19-2002, 11:23 PM
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Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
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Kathie: You must have entered your name as your signature (or "sig") in your options. You can have it say anything you like (mine is a list forum of links). When you change it, every post you've ever made will show whatever you changed it to.

As for business from the internet, I get a little, but I've found the vast majority of people are not comfortable shippng their precious old originals, and those that know enough to scan and email a file probably know the basics of restoration (maybe from this site ).

There are a couple of good threads on this subject. As I recall, yellow pages listings seemed to be the concensus for getting local business.
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  #14  
Old 11-20-2002, 01:24 AM
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roger_ele roger_ele is offline
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Welcome Kathie,

I don't know what your markup should be comparing wholesale to retail, I think the range would be 30 to 50 percent of retail for the wholsale, it will depend on how high your retail prices are, how loyal you want the photographers to be, how much you value the convienience of working wholesale and how much you would prefer not to deal directly with the customers. If the photographer or retail outlet is not saying who is doing the work you can also use different pricing systems for each...

Here are some marketing ideas;

-Yellow pages is very good.

-Local neighberhood newspapers

-Donating to a raffle was mentioned, when I donate to a raffle I donate a dollar amount (usually $150) that is impressive enough to feel like you can get something without an additional purchase if you wished (I have a pet peeve, I think it is rude to win a discount!). I know some people, and I think this is a good idea, that instruct the people running the raffle or auction that after the item is raffled to announce that the business has also donated - to help the cause and for those that missed out - a certain number of whatevers - 100% of the money paid for the whatevers go to the organization. In your case that might be scan, optimize and archive 10 images, normally a $50 value, but for a $25 donation to the organization.

-Fund raising, the organization gets a percent of all receipts. Target non-profits that deal largely with the older community, cultural associations and historical societies, geneology clubs and associations, and deffinently churches. You can find all of the choices through the phone book, and you can go to the meeting place on the scheduled "Old photos restored" day, or whatever you want to call it.

Also, if you charge too little at the beginning you will run into trouble later, if you raise your prices too quickly too compensate you will find very few customers and referrals staying with you (it is too different from wht they expected - price is part of your image and reputation). One way to get around this is to say that you are new to the industry and are building your portfolio, so a very special one time discount will be given to the first ten, or whatever number you decide on, customers to get your business "ball" rolling. Then people will expect to pay more the next ime they come to you.

Hope this helps, Roger
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  #15  
Old 11-20-2002, 06:59 AM
Kathie Kathie is offline
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You guys are great! Thanks so much for all the valuable information.

The Yellow Pages sounds like a better way to invest my money; however, we recently moved to NC from CA, and we are renting for a few months until we decide where we want to live. That means I don't have a permanent phone number or address to use for the YP...and I think the deadline is coming up real soon. So, there goes that idea until the following year!

I liked the earlier idea of putting a magnetic sign on the car... I think I'll look into that.

Some great ideas to help get me started - thanks again.

By the way, Doug, I went to my profile page and then to "user options" and a msg came up saying I didn't have permission to access that page. Is this not where I would change my "options"?
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  #16  
Old 11-20-2002, 09:44 AM
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Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
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Nah, that's where *I* change your options

You'll have to go to the User CP link on the navbar, then to your member profile.
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  #17  
Old 11-25-2002, 01:12 PM
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pstewart pstewart is offline
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Thoughts on retouching biz

Quote:
Originally posted by alceria
As for the web, I think it's probably a good idea to have a web presence eventually, but I doubt it will bring in a lot of work on its own.
I think you have to be patient with your web site. Mine has been up for about five years, just sitting there mostly, till recently the search engines must have moved it up a few notches as it got more hits. Now it is giving me more business than I want, frankly. Just in the last four days I had five job requests, two of which I referred elsewhere because I didn't want to do them, two for retouching and one for restoration, which I will do.

While I waited for my web page to get noticed, I tried flyers on mailbox posts locally, from which I got about a dozen clients, many of which are repeat customers (like the lady who wants photo Xmas cards designed each year) and others who have referred me to friends. Just had to do the flyers once, and it was interesting and good exercise taking long walks through various neighborhoods to do it.

As for advertising in the Yellow Pages, yikes, those ads cost thousands! Local paper ads might be cheaper if you want ads. But flyers are FREE for the leg work, plus you can put a LOT more info on a whole sheet of paper, including even some examples!

I don't really want that much business, though, since my main "job at home" is tutoring math, which keeps me busy enough, so perhaps my advice won't be very helpful to anyone wanting a major part of their income from just photo work.

As for price of a web presence, Kathie, you needn't pay $500 to have a site made. Use the Adobe program that comes with Photoshop, or Front Page for Windows, or any of the other instant web page software and make your own. Doesn't have to be fancy...just a place to display some of your work and give out your email and phone. I keep my site on pair.com for only $9.95/month, which is like nothing. There is only the initial cost of registering your domain and setting up the pair.com account, maybe about fifty bucks, then it's cheap.

As for where to work, from home is definitely the way to go. Why pay hundreds/thousands a month for a strip mall office? Much prefer not having to get dressed up and go out anyway. Working from home is a luxury in this business (as in tutoring) that most working folks don't enjoy...may as well take advantage of this great perk!

Hmmm...wonder if I could add Photoshop retouching "tutoring" to my next flyer...hmmmm...

Phyllis
www.innographx.com

Last edited by pstewart; 11-25-2002 at 01:22 PM.
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