When Miranda Sutphen, a photographer in Georgia, first discovered Thumbtack, she thought, “I’m going to pay someone to give them a quote? That seems backwards.” But she tried it anyway – and landed a job three hours later. “It all snowballed from there,” says Sutphen. She’s since been hired fifteen times on Thumbtack.
But she did struggle to find the right wording for her messages. Her original quote process – which landed her a number of clients when she first started – was failing. “There was a period of about a month that I couldn’t get a single job,” Sutphen admits. “Every quote I sent out was horrible. I’m like, ‘What am I doing wrong?’”
Undaunted, Sutphen dissected her messages and tweaked her wording. “I was a little concerned,” she says. “But then I changed it, and everything has been hunky-dory since.”
One of the Quotes That Landed Her a Job
Great to hear from you. I would love to take portraits of you and your family! For portraits/families I usually do a 1 hour session on location, which includes up to 3 outfit changes, an online gallery and all the edited digital files on CD with permission to print. (Typically it’s about 200 pictures). I also have mini sessions available which is a 30 minute session at the location of your choice, plus an online gallery and 20-30 edited digital files on CD with permission to print.
Please let me know if either of these options would be something you are looking for and we can pick a time that works for you and go from there. I am happy to drive to Hilton Head, it’s so beautiful there! You can view my portfolio at www.camerakoala.com in the meantime if you like.
I look forward to talking with you soon!
Why Her Quote Works
- Expresses genuine excitement about the job.
- Detailed explanation about different packages, tailored to the needs of the specific customer.
- Makes it easy on the customer by offering to drive out to their location.
- Includes her website and phone number (removed), as well as a link to a friendly and engaging bio with her picture, making it easy for customers to get a sense of her personality.
- Ends with “I look forward to talking with you soon!” – an engaging invitation for response.
“I made it a little more personable,” Sutphen says of her message. She shifted away from intricate descriptions of her package offerings and toward how much she loves weddings and loves shooting them.
“I think I settled on a good formula and now it seems to be working really well,” she says. But she doesn’t rely solely on her standard boilerplate. “I try to get a feel for the person as I’m quoting.”
Moral of the Story
Experiment! There are best practices to guide you, but you need to get a sense of what your customers want while learning more about how you work. And don’t forget to have fun with it.
“I get to meet all these people and they’re all amazing,” says Sutphen. “And I make money!” She gets excited every time her phone dings with another Thumbtack request. “I remember the first week and my phone would ding every hour. I’m like, ‘Look! Another request. Look! Another request.’ I responded to like six or seven that first day.” Then she started getting bookings. “Now I’m doing really well – I’ve already done thirteen weddings this year.”