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Photography Question 
Scott McCord

Proofing for clients

How many of you out there allow printed proofs to leave the studio? I used to allow printed proofs to leave the studio and in fact, in my wedding photography, included proofs in an album as part of the packages. I had to stop offering those because I was not getting print orders. Now I offer them a proof portfolio (as well as online proofing) that they may take for two weeks. If they order up to a certain photo package, they get to keep the proof portfolio. Otherwise, it has to be returned or they may purchase it for $80.
My clients were taking the proofs and scanning them at home and printing them out on their own. I have no concrete proof of course, but I am positive this is what was happening. I would get good referrals from these clients, but no orders.
Stopped offering proofs and, voila, I started getting print orders.

The real question: Does this seem too stingy to not allow printed proofs out of the studio? I mean, I do have to protect my work. It's really an issue for wedding clients who do not live close to me. They cannot come in and view proofs, so it has to be done online, which is not what my clients seem to prefer.

I've done the whole watermark thing too, but it takes so much time and basically is a waste of money printing those and then never using them again after an order.

And if you do provide printed proofs, do you give them to the customer after they order a certain package?

Just trying to get a different perspective on what other photographers are doing.

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9/26/2006 2:01:56 PM

BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/24/2005
Contact Amy
Amy's Gallery
  Hey Scott! The photographers that did my wedding used to send 4X5 proofs home and then you could order 8 of them for 79.00. They then went to printing wallet size proofs on a page of plain white paper, there were 4 on each page. They also put them in a small folder. That way you can't get a a good copy. They now give cutomers a cd album that expires in 30 days, it is also protected so that they cannot be printed.

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9/26/2006 2:35:10 PM

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