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Like most people I get those daily Groupon emails and I have even bought a couple of deals in the past for canvasses to put my photographs on, but I would never dream of advertising my own services on there. I see ads for makeover photoshoots on there at least once a week for around £19. Sounds like a bargain doesn’t it? The services of two professionals – a makeup artist and a photographer – for just £19?
As one of those professionals it sets massive alarm bells ringing for me. Jude and I couldn’t possibly offer the high quality service we are known for at Lipgloss and Lenses for that price. We would lose money. I have a theory that there are only two ways companies can make money by offering prices like that. Either they offer a very substandard service, knowing that Groupon customers are after a bargain and will most likely never come back, or they massively inflate their print prices and put on the hard sell once the session is over.
I have spoken to people who have experienced both scenarios. What happened the next time they wanted a makeover photoshoot? They decided that you get what you pay for and they came to us. At Lipgloss and Lenses all of our pricing is completely transparent. Our reprint prices are very reasonable and are there to see before you even book. Jude and I love our work and take great pride in it, whether we are doing a single makeover portrait session, a group photoshoot or a photo pamper party.
A couple of weeks ago I received a phone call from Groupon. They had seen the vintage makeover photoshoots we specialise in and thought it would be something a bit different for them to offer. I politely declined, much to the horror of the person on the other end of the phone. He seemed genuinely surprised I didn’t snatch his hand off.
Days later, sure enough there was an offer from another photo studio offering vintage makeover photoshoots. Not a service I had ever seen them offer before, but hey, immitation is the sincerest form of flattery, no? I thought no more about it until this weekend I saw a post from a reputable photography studio irate that one of their images had been copied and used on an ad on Groupon. Guess which offer it was?
Like I said, you generally get what you pay for.