The Puppy Dog Close - part 1 of 1 2

Published 01/04/2001


You may have heard of this term before, but have you ever tried to use it in your photography business? The term was coined from the effect holding a puppy has on a potential buyer. Looking at the photos of cute puppies on the internet is not quite the same thing.

"Adorable? Yes of course they are". That is what you tell your children while browsing online. But the conversation you are having inside your head is a little different, and goes more like "ok they look cute, but do I really want to spend £500 on a dog?"

In the good old days before the internet, you would read an ad in your local newspaper or perhaps a card in the newsagents window. 'Labrador puppies for sale' and a phone number. You gave them a call and they invited you to come and see them, so off you went.

If your seven year old has been playing with the puppy for 15 minutes while you've been discussing toilet training and dog food with the breeder, you'll have been watching your child pretty closely to make sure they didn't get bitten, or do anything stupid. But by this time your child will most likely be in love with the cute little puppy and has already made the purchasing decision for you.

Are you really going to say no? Are you even going to haggle over the price? Most likely not.

The concept can be taken to a whole new level if the seller has the confidence to do so. How about if the breeder let the potential buyer, take the puppy home for a week to see how it settled into family life? The breeder could also provide a seven day supply of dog food, so there were no cost implications for the potential buyer during that trial week. At the end of that week, are you really going to let them take your child's puppy away?

This is a very powerful concept! When it comes to selling I don't think there is anything more powerful than the puppy dog close. So how can you use it in your photography business?

Here is a strategy you can use for both a portrait client, or a bride and groom. You've processed the files and there's one or two shots that stand head and shoulders above the rest. You just know that one of these will be their favourite shot. With a little experience you'll get to know what type of shots your clients pick as their favourite, (and you can always show them a couple of shots on the camera screen to gauge their reaction), and know which image to use.

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1st Published 01/04/2001
last update 06/11/2019 11:08:07

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