We can't "evaluate the job accurately" for their budget IF WE DON'T KNOW THEIR BUDGET!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
People think photography is a commodity!!!!!!!! It's NOT! It's a LUXURY!!!!! So, yes, when we evaluate all those other factors, it tells us where the job should be priced. We know its about TT's bottom line, so stop trying to tell intelligent people that can do the math, that this will all be so wonderful for us!!!
Its the exact same thing as what Marco said about providing us with phone numbers. 4 years ago he actually said in a video, that the removed the phone numbers because too many pros were calling in for refunds because the phone numbers were bogus. So instead of us having the ablity to validate that a lead was bogus and skip it, our ability to veryify the validity was taken away!!!! SAME THING HERE!!!!! If we don't know that it's a $3500 job with a $350 budget, we'll bid it and they'll contact us to ask a worthless question that will cause us to be charged!
And now we lose business!!!! Because when I see that the budget is less than $500 and they want 10 hours, I bid $495 for two hours and sell them on quality over quantity. But now I cant' do that, so I completely lose out on the job because I bid it at $3500 where it should be and they have no clue that I could have given them 2 hours of beautiful imagery. So, instead they get some clueless amateur for $300 for 10 hours and a worthless disk of snapshots that they'll cry over because they now have no reall images of their wedding day. So, this not only screws us out of getting the job, but it screws the customer out of getting a properly done job.
Oh, great, what a relief... it's not for every category of pro, only EVERY CATEGORY OF PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Now I feel so much better that the core of this change is directly to every aspect of my industry!
It used to be I make money you make money. I understand that it is up to me to use this service. It is to bad that we and Thumbtack can not be in buisness together.
No, that doesn't work. Don't even go there with the $1000 minimum! I begged for years for them to add (believe it or not!) LOWER budget options because I was so fed up wasting time bidding, only to find out they had a $100 budget. People would choose any random budget option because their budget was lower and none of the options fit. All these $50 and $100 requests were coming in for engagement photography, but saying they had budgets up to $500. After harping on TT for quite some time, I got them to install an option for "$100 or less". I've now beeen able to pass on those, being that it's impossible to work in that budget. Since that time, it's actully much less common for people to choose that option. They only select that a couple times a year.
I've also been BEGGING AND PLEADING for TT to add wedding options that have something to do with real world wedding photography pricing! The options start at $250 and only go up to $2000. Then there's an option for "over $2000". This is a major problem because people EVERY DAY are putting in budget options where the price of the job is TEN TIMES the budget! Sometimes even more! How a person is allowed to request 10 hours of wedding photography for $250-$500 is beyond me! One request wanted two photogs and video for 14 hours plus 400 edited images in albums... it was a $57,000 job and they had a budget of $1500. SERIOUSLY? ?????
Several more categores need to be added to the higher range of event photography because right now, it tops off at 50% less than the averager actaul pricing! The average price of wedding photography nationally is $3500, and in NY its $3800. AVERAGE!!!! TT's highest range option is 50% below the AVERAGE cost!!! So even if something comes through at $2000+, I've still no idea where their budget is! Is it $2000, $2500, $3500, $5000, or even more?
TT also needs to STOP promoting photography services "Affordable"!!!! THAT'S why all these insane requests come through with the cost being 10-15 times the budget! I'M NOT KIDDING!!! In every category I pass on a dozen requests a day because they have inane budgets!!!! But TT forces us to discount because it promotes us as "affordable", offers inane budget options, and then pits 14 of us against each other, driving prices desperately low so if we want to eat, we've got to cut pricing. I'm down $9000 this year from my session fees being cut to $150 because I'm bidding against 14 other, where I used to charge $295 and be hired because there were only 2-3 other bids!
TT dominates the first listing in google on a search for photographers, so there's NO reason to promote it as "Affordable"! When you're sitting at #1 ,THAT'S when you have the opportunity to get clients at NORMAL pricing!!!!! It's beginning to feel like a hooker & pimp relationship. If the math was done on the annual profit for TT vs the annual profit of all of us pros combined, surely it would show that the huge majority of the profits go into TTs pockets, compared to our combinedpocket. We do all the work, but they make way more money. I don't see TT putting 15-25 hours in on each job, as I do. From bidding to contract writing, to followup, to shooting the job, to editing, prepping for selections, then having them in for their selection appointment, to then prepping their selections for the lab, to ordering, to going to the post office to pick up the order, to checking it in, contacting them for pickup, then having them in for pickup, I'm easily into 15-25 hours work per job. If I don't actually make an upsell on that $150 session, I'm making $7.50 an hour, and out of that comes all my overhead and taxes, leaving me with about ***I KID YOU NOT!!!*** $1-$2 per hour of net pay!!! So, yeah, something needs to be fixed!
Defininglamagery, I hope they are not treating us all the same. Cause we are not the same. I am a Travel Agent, I work from there budget. For example, if I try to book you on the Queen Mary cruise. This cruise is the people who can afford a high budget cost. I was selling it to you and you have a middle-class budget. You would be I can't afford that and I want it my time. So, knowing your budget that you want to spend save me time and money. The client disappointment!
I understand that not all of us need the same thing. That is where I feel that TT needs to take notice of their clients, us. They are helping us get clients they need to know each one of our tools that use for our clients to better serve our needs for the needs of our clients.
This change is ridiculous! With my services, the price range could be drastically different based on the style of food/service that they want to have. Now I just have to blindly guess if this client wants a budget friendly service or high-end/formal. And considering that the price range is anywhere from $25 per person to $100 per person, the chances of me being accurate to what they want are slim. And now I will be getting charged the new heavily inflated prices for jobs that I wouldn't even have bid on in the first place if they respond. And I will now have to bid on everything, wasting my time because I can't filter based on price. I will now have to bid on jobs I never would have before, and not finding out if it is a job I am even interested in until afterwards. And now the client will have to sift through more bids that may not even be close to their budget, making them possibly feel cheap and daunted by quotes that aren't suitable for their plan. How is having less information ever a good thing!?! I have been a staunch supporter of Thumbtack for years, but this is absurd.... It isn't better for the clients, it isn't better for the pros. It seems like the only one who benefits from this is Thumbtack. You all use to put your pros before profit. I miss those days... I hope this ridiculous change gets rolled back immediately