Delivering a beautiful gallery of images can sometimes feel like the perfect way to wrap up your client’s time in front of your camera, but wait! What about that sweet note of gratitude they sent thanking you for a wonderful experience and gorgeous images to match?! And if they didn’t send a thank you note or review right away don’t fret! Newlyweds, expecting mothers, high school seniors, or whoever your clients might be tend to be very busy with the exciting changes and celebrations going on in their lives. Consistent timing, well written emails, and on brand information guides, are big pieces of the client communication puzzle but, are you missing an essential piece in your workflow? I’m talking about collecting client reviews.
Collecting client reviews is like collecting little credibility stamps to represent you and your photography business. When your clients post a glowing positive review about your services on your business’ Facebook page, The Knot, Google, or other online platforms that support reviews, it’s free advertising and a small SEO kick for you! It also helps brand new clients learn more about what makes you stand out as an artist and business owner. The potential for client reviews to bring new business to you is exciting and is not something you want to miss out on. Here are some of the most common questions about collecting client reviews, answered.
Where do I start? If you haven’t already, add review collection to your client communication workflow. When you realize the power behind kind words from happy clients, you create a plan so you never miss out on an opportunity. You have a routine, plan, email templates, and resources for clients when they first reach out and first inquire about your services. I suggest the same attention to detail when collecting client reviews!
When do I ask? Collecting client reviews is part of your workflow and now you need to prepare your approach. I photograph bridal portraits, engagements, and weddings. If my couples don’t immediately ask where they can submit a review after receiving their wedding photos, I personally wait two weeks after delivering their gallery before sending my review request. That might vary for you and your clients, but I like to give my couples plenty of time to enjoy their images and relive their wedding day before asking anything of them. For my couples, I find that it’s best to ask when the experience of working together is still fresh and that two weeks allows my couples enough time to submit reviews/thank you notes on their own before my gentle reminder arrives in their inbox. Again, based on your business and clientele, your timeline might be quite different. What’s important is that you create a that timeline that works best for you and make it part of your communication routine.
How to I ask? A friendly email can work wonders. Your clients loved working with you, have gotten to know who you are, and want to see you succeed. An email that thanks them for their time, wishes them well, and reminds them of just how much you’ve valued working together is the perfect time to ask your sweet clients for one brief favor! I make sure my clients know that even a few sentences of genuine feedback will offer essential insight to new clients in search of a photographer. I pose a few brief questions (what was your favorite part about working with me, what do you remember most about your wedding photography experience, etc…) to offer some direction for my clients, but I really want to leave room for honest, open reviews. Keep this email simple, friendly, and gracious. Don’t forget to include details and links to where you’d like reviews submitted, making the collection process as easy as possible for your busy clients!
What’s next? After your client has submitted their review or thank you note online or directly to you, it’s important to get those kind words in front of future clients! That might mean featuring client reviews on your website, in thoughtful captions on social media, as part of your email signature as you respond to inquiries, or including reviews in pricing guides and other resources for brides. The idea is that when future clients look to your website and socials, the should see gorgeous images AND verification that you are worth every penny because you create a wonderful experience for your clients. What better evidence than testimonials from real life, happy clients?