There's nothing worse than hiring someone to shoot a project for you and being kept largely in the dark about the status of that project just because someone doesn't know how to talk to people. Whether you're a wedding videographer or a music video DP, one of the most important skills you can have to build and keep your clientele is great communication, and in this video from Adorama, wedding photographer Vanessa Joy shares five helpful tips that will teach you how to communicate better with your clients.
Even though Joy's focus is primarily on wedding photographers, they translate perfectly to all sorts of creatives, including filmmakers, cinematographers, videographers, and even editors. Here are the tips she talks about in the video:
- Use the right communication method: What is your preferred method of communication? Doesn't matter. Do what your client prefers. If they like texts, shoot them a text. If they like email, shoot them an email. If they like getting messages on Instagram or Facebook, you get the idea. The fact is, even though a lot of us in the creative world use email to communicate with each other, a lot of people, especially millennials, don't nowadays.
- Make videos: Got a FAQ page? Cool, but are you sure you wouldn't rather have a series of videos that explain your process and "next steps?" Having videos that explain your workflow might be a better option for those who don't like to read through big blocks of text.
- Have a presence on social media: This is a no-brainer and I'm sure that most of you out there already have one, but make your presence known on social media. Create professional profiles on Facebook, Instagram, and any other platforms that matter to you. And upload stuff regularly. If you only post stuff once or a couple of times a month you're going to look inactive. No ghost town profiles, okay?
- Fast response time: Expected response times are getting shorter; that is just the world we live in today. (Instant gratification has its drawbacks.) So, if you're thinking that you're going to respond to your client within the old standard of 24 hours, you're in for a world of hurt. Respond within 5 hours, or within 1 hour if you're a friggin' rockstar.
- Let them know what's coming next: Never let your clients wonder what comes next. Always communicate clearly when they can expect their product, their bill, or anything else that pertains to the project. As someone who has dealt with a wedding photographer that ghosted for months at a time, waiting for any kind of communication or information about next steps is just the worst.
What are some other tips for communicating better with clients? Let us know down in the comments.