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Thread: Groupon Deals Photographers

  1. #61
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    Quote Originally Posted by allenleonhart View Post
    just to highlight, at least to my (limited) knowledge of the people i have interacted in the industry.


    many practice this, even wedding photographers/agencies.

    by being the contractor, they take up job offers at X rate. after which, they would hire a freelance/ supposedly associate photographer at 70% of the offer and effectively do nothing but make a phone call.

    after which, freelance takes over and does almost everything.

    not that i'm frowning on this practice, as it might provide jobs to people who otherwise might not get it, but i question the effectiveness and how much middle man money can be absorbed, which might had allowed the photographer himself to do his own advertising if he decides to charge that high.

    if i were to push it a little further, take a job, pass it to a guy who does it for free for portfolio, they can potentially earn a lot.

    but all these are merely hypothetical. we can raise these till the cows come home....
    This happens in every industry. IT, construction... you name it.

    But the middle man is also putting his reputation and company on the line. If the freelancer screws up everything, the middle man will lose credibility and will have to take care of the mess if the middle man still want to continue in his/her business.

  2. #62

    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    Quote Originally Posted by daredevil123 View Post
    This happens in every industry. IT, construction... you name it.

    But the middle man is also putting his reputation and company on the line. If the freelancer screws up everything, the middle man will lose credibility and will have to take care of the mess if the middle man still want to continue in his/her business.
    Agreed. Don't need Groupon, this is an even faster way to destroy your brand.

  3. #63

    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    That is quite feasible actually. Don't rule out such practices are already going on.

    Quote Originally Posted by sinned79 View Post
    let's be the devil here.

    start a brand name (which you will close down and start another).

    hire free photographers who dun mind working for free to build up their portfolio.

    advertise thru groupon and offer too good to be true photography service at a peanut price.

    let these free photographers do the job while you collect the payment.

    close down this brand name, start a new one and repeat the cycle.

    not bad eh?
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  4. #64

    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    Agreed! Tell me about it man. It is so common in the IT industry, it's like a de-facto standard man. But the part about losing credibility, not unless your brand is powerful enough. I see screw ups now and then and yet the brand is still hanging BIG and SHINY in front of their building.

    Quote Originally Posted by daredevil123 View Post
    This happens in every industry. IT, construction... you name it.

    But the middle man is also putting his reputation and company on the line. If the freelancer screws up everything, the middle man will lose credibility and will have to take care of the mess if the middle man still want to continue in his/her business.
    Last edited by David Kwok; 28th September 2011 at 02:19 AM.
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  5. #65

    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    I agree with cannedpineapples about the branding issue. It seems that the so-called marketing campaign that attracted the merchants turn out to be a killer for their branding instead of helping them. I also agree that it makes them look cheaper than their worth, not to mention if they can hang on to the business at all. There is a long term effect on the merchant that will not easily go away even if the groupon deal ends.

    My partner also constantly buys groupon coupons and other similar coupons at the same time. These cheap deals are indeed good, but somewhat I myself don't really take much note about the branding. Perhaps there is no branding to talk about for some services and products, or perhaps so far, those brands ain't big brands that affected my judgement.

    I love Apple product, and similarly the fact that Apple place their products at a fixed price and seldom change, even after their model get upgraded, makes me a happier consumer at the end of the day. Despite that later models are more advance and have more features, I still feel happy that my purchase is worth it because Apple respected the consumer recognition in their product and ensure the consumer in this subtle manner that they made the right choice to go for premium and stay premium.

    Quote Originally Posted by cannedpineapples View Post
    Bro, this is your central argument. It hinges on the assumption that people know that on a 'normal day', 'a 90 min shoot is not $15'.

    The problem is that you apply this to all companies equally. This is not true. Most consumers do in fact know that on a 'normal day' for Eu Yan Seng, Manhatten Fish Market, Dian Xiao Er, the price is not what Groupon offers. I 100% agree. So if you have this kind of brand, sure, consider Groupon.

    However, how do they know what 'a 90 min shoot' is worth for a photographer they've never heard of? If a newbie photographer is charging, a 90 min shoot may not even be worth $15. If a pro is charging, then sure, it's probably normally far more than $15- but how would they know you're a pro, and what your 'normal day' rates are?

    Besides, say they know your 'normal day' rates. What's stopping me from going to ANOTHER pro doing Groupon as well the next time I need a 90 min shoot? So each Pro does it only once, but visitors to Groupon get an endless stream of 'pro photographers' charging $15. In short, a 'normal price' for these customers are now... $15.

    You see that with no-name salons or restaurants with no established price. Today I eat there on a Groupon deal, tomorrow I eat somewhere else, also on a Groupon deal. I understand they are all professional restaurants for whom a "normal day" is not this price; but I have the ability to choose from different professional restaurants everyday. Who earns from all this? Groupon.

    But this is not even a no-name salon or restaurant, with significant cost overheads and fixed costs. You are an individual providing a service. They can't walk in, look at your establishment, and know that a ten-course dinner here surely couldn't cost $15. Instead, you are providing a service. Unless you are like a David Gan, for whom everybody knows how much your service is worth, unfortunately, customers who have never heard of you will just assume you are worth $15.

    This is not 'lowballing'. It is simply saying, 'well, I have no way of telling how good you are... I can't look at the product, I can't look at your overheads, I can't look at the freshness of your ingredients vs other restaurants. You may have good gear, but so does the other pro down the street. You give me nice photos, but almost all wedding photos I see are great. I'm really not so discerning between photographers, unlike for restaurants. So how to tell how good you are? Well, since you charge $15, you are willing to take $15. You must be worth $15."

    Again, this is not lowballing. It is taking your price as an indication of quality.
    Last edited by David Kwok; 28th September 2011 at 02:39 AM.
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  6. #66
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    Quote Originally Posted by David Kwok View Post
    Agreed! Tell me about it man. It is so common in the IT industry, it's like a de-facto standard man. But the part about losing credibility, not unless your brand is powerful enough. I see screw ups now and then and yet the brand is still hanging BIG and SHINY in front of their building.
    That is because of all the other dirty things going below the still waters. The widely known but yet unspoken stuff.

  7. #67

    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    Quote Originally Posted by David Kwok View Post
    I agree with cannedpineapples about the branding issue. It seems that the so-called marketing campaign that attracted the merchants turn out to be a killer for their branding instead of helping them. I also agree that it makes them look cheaper than their worth, not to mention if they can hang on to the business at all. There is a long term effect on the merchant that will not easily go away even if the groupon deal ends.

    My partner also constantly buys groupon coupons and other similar coupons at the same time. These cheap deals are indeed good, but somewhat I myself don't really take much note about the branding. Perhaps there is no branding to talk about for some services and products, or perhaps so far, those brands ain't big brands that affected my judgement.

    I love Apple product, and similarly the fact that Apple place their products at a fixed price and seldom change, even after their model get upgraded, makes me a happier consumer at the end of the day. Despite that later models are more advance and have more features, I still feel happy that my purchase is worth it because Apple respected the consumer recognition in their product and ensure the consumer in this subtle manner that they made the right choice to go for premium and stay premium.
    Good example. Mark my words: Apple will NEVER go on Groupon. Not in a million years. Although if it did, it would probably have the most successful deal in history.

  8. #68

    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    I agree a lot with Sprewell and Cannedpineapples, great info and insights.

    For those considering Groupon, reread their posts once more. Don't be naive and think that your getting exposure or marketing. It does not work this way, don't get killed and still defending that it's good to get killed. It's ridiculous.

  9. #69
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    Quote Originally Posted by cannedpineapples View Post
    Good example. Mark my words: Apple will NEVER go on Groupon. Not in a million years. Although if it did, it would probably have the most successful deal in history.
    Even if apple ever use Groupons, it will probably be on Apple's terms, so Groupon can look good... not the other way round.

  10. #70
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    Thanks to everyone sharing your views,

    Photographers and customers thought is such a great deal, but in the end only Groupon is the sole winner.
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  11. #71
    Senior Member sinned79's Avatar
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    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    Thanks to everyone sharing your views,

    Photographers and customers thought is such a great deal, but in the end only Groupon is the sole winner.
    Groupon may work for other business (like f&B, travels) but i don't think it suits photography biz.

  12. #72

    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    Coupons might have been a good idea once upon a time, but things are changing. New article today by the New York Times:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/02/bu....html?_r=1&hpw

    "Coupons for the spa drew women from around the metropolitan area eager to see their bulges melt and their wrinkles removed. Once. “Then they would get another coupon and go do it with someone else,” Wellpath’s director, Jennifer Bengel, said. “There was no loyalty.”"

    "The consumers were being told: You will never pay full price again. The merchants were hearing: You are going to get new customers who will stick around and pay full price. Disappointment was inevitable."

    "Even worse from the merchants’ point of view, the popularity of the coupon sites fed a relentless bargain-hunting mentality among customers that did not use them. “Every day, we get an e-mail or phone call saying, Can we match someone else’s price?” said Ms. Bengel of Wellpath. “We’re not Wal-Mart.”"

    "And the long-term reputation of the merchant may be at risk, according to a new study by researchers at Boston University and Harvard that analyzed thousands of Groupon and Living Social deals. The researchers found that fans of daily deals were on average hard to please. After they ate at the restaurant or visited the spa, they went on Yelp and grumbled about it. This pulled down the average Yelp rating by as much as half a point."

  13. #73

    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    Actually, I read and I wonder why other photographers keep thinking that their operating cost is the same as the rest and other photographers are just like them?

    I meant anyone enterprising enough can still make money out of it.

    For example, that person can teach photography, have students to be the "not just free but paying you" helpers with their own equipment, thus you do not need to spend money on equipment, and the groupons customers being "not just free but paying you" models. At that kind of resolution, even a point and shoot or iPhone will do fine. End of the day, the students get what is in the terms, education and shooting experience, groupons customer get what is in the terms which is unlimited photos at small resolution. You get paid for "coordination". And after getting the contacts of the the customers and students, can still sell to to those telemarketing firms. ... etc. (Which is what I suspect some people/organizations do with my personal information)

    Just an example. What I am highlighting is that someone else might have a different business model so it might still be viable, if not profitable for them.

  14. #74

    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    Even then it does not sound feasible, the amount of coordinating work and customer care could be staggering, coz the photogs becomes your clients too as they paid to learn, thus doubling your client care and coordination work, and at that kind of low pricing, not worth it. And there is matter of ethics and conscience. One can be 'enterprising' and get paying student-noob-photogs to shoot misinformed paying clients. If people paid to learn how to shoot, then there is an obligation and responsibility to teach and impart knowledge, how are you going to fulfill that? Even if fulfilled, how not at paying clients' time, and you can't guarantee or QC results from supposedly student-photogs.

    Plus it's really easy for your students to go rogue and out of control.

    Quote Originally Posted by shelomoh View Post
    Actually, I read and I wonder why other photographers keep thinking that their operating cost is the same as the rest and other photographers are just like them?

    I meant anyone enterprising enough can still make money out of it.

    For example, that person can teach photography, have students to be the "not just free but paying you" helpers with their own equipment, thus you do not need to spend money on equipment, and the groupons customers being "not just free but paying you" models. At that kind of resolution, even a point and shoot or iPhone will do fine. End of the day, the students get what is in the terms, education and shooting experience, groupons customer get what is in the terms which is unlimited photos at small resolution. You get paid for "coordination". And after getting the contacts of the the customers and students, can still sell to to those telemarketing firms. ... etc. (Which is what I suspect some people/organizations do with my personal information)

    Just an example. What I am highlighting is that someone else might have a different business model so it might still be viable, if not profitable for them.
    Last edited by JasonB; 8th October 2011 at 07:11 AM.

  15. #75
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    if the groupon deal advertise the shoot will be shot by professionals, but in the end just let any newbies photographers shoot their customers, I think most people will consider this is deceiving.

    customers sign up the gounpon deal because it is cheap and claim the shoot will be undertake by pros, do you think will there be still many people sign up if they were know they will be guinea pigs for some hobbyist?
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  16. #76

    Default

    Is it possible to get tilt shift lens at hundred dollar? Pay peanuts get monkeys lor.

    Hmm maybe oneday canon nikon on groupon also... Haha... Dreaming I am...
    Last edited by sfoto100; 8th October 2011 at 10:31 AM.

  17. #77

    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    I think there was a groupon a few days back for car photography in a studio...
    My photo page: TDR Photography

  18. #78

    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    i've personally seen a friend taking up one of these kinda deal with her boyfriend. honestly.... it wouldnt survivce the C&C corner much
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  19. #79

    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    actually when it comes to art, no one is right or wrong. Some people think very highly of the pictures of themselves.. as long as they are inside, properly exposed, wow! great picture!!...

    before i buy my camera, i was talking to a friend of mine who loves sports photography.. i was sharing my research on camera with him before my purchase.. and i told him, all pics look the same to me leh!!! he was quite pissed! he told me "Then u don't need to get a DSLR lah!!!"

    i am still learning now.. but at least now i can differentiate better than before..

    so , like what some say, there is a market for everyone!!! Indeed there is! So one must really know where one is and charge accordingly!


  20. #80
    Senior Member Anson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Groupon Deals Photographers

    Quote Originally Posted by naheuy View Post
    i've personally seen a friend taking up one of these kinda deal with her boyfriend. honestly.... it wouldnt survivce the C&C corner much
    Did your friend or her bf post the picture online? Curious how the photos turn out?

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