Mini Session Question: The balance of customer value and photographers time

September 09, 2019  •  Leave a Comment

Let me start of by saying I have never done a mini-session before but have been asked on numerous occasions when I will have one. I have also seen some photographers make a good living on mini-sessions alone. 

 

My questions: Is a mini session a discount on your work or just a subset from the main session? 

 

Maybe its a bit of both. Customers love discounts and sometimes they dont need a full set of pictures. Lets say they need one good profile picture. 

 

How many full session clients do you book? what, did I really ask this? Ok then, at what price? 

If you only limit the number of pictures....then do customers expect them to the BEST YOU HAVE TO OFFER?

 

Oklahoma Mini SessionYoung girl portriat OKC Mini SessionGlamor Shots young girl portrait

 

Oklahoma Mini Session

example: Avg. session: $100 with an avg. of 6 bookings for portraits ($600 per month) 

Each session has around 20 pictures to edit making a total 120 pictures to edit for $600 (making it $5 per picture) 

We must also include the session time. Let's say 1 hour per session (6 hours total) 

 

Mini Session Economics 

The key if finding the sweet spot for cost without braking your cost per picture rule. 

Let's say you have one mini session each lasting 20 mins for $25 with a promise of 3-5 pictures. It should be the same look for each client so your edits should be relatively streamlined. 

 

In 1 hour you will make $75 but edit at least 5 pictures less across three sessions. I will assume that the best mini-session date would around 10-12 sessions in a day. 

 

Mini Session cost @ $25 / 3-5 pictures

Time       Earned       Edits      # of Sessions

1 hr          $75           15                3

2 hr          $150         30                6

4 hr          $300         60               12

 

Mini Session cost @ $35 / 4-6 pictures

Time       Earned       Edits      # of Sessions

1 hr          $105         18                3

2 hr          $210         36                6

4 hr          $410         72               12

 

It seems that it's possible to make more money on 2 mini-session days then what can be made in a typical month. Finding that right spot with your regular pricing and what's perceived as a value or discount. At $35 you are making $5 more per hour with fewer edits. We all know that edits can be a time killer. 

 

I think its time for me to try this in practice, run the numbers for my current pricing and then report back. 

What does everyone think? How do you handle Mini-Sessions?

 


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