What do you think of when you hear the word boutique? The word boutique is defined as a small company that offers highly specialized services or products. When I was starting my business, I wanted to go above and beyond and give my clients not only what they needed but even more than what they expected. I have been working for over 10 years to make my boutique photography studio the best in Kalamazoo….here are some ways we work very hard to give our customers the boutique photography experience.
Excellent Photography. That is kind of a given right? 😉 Being able to take great photographs sounds easy and foundational, but to do so requires some extras like the commitment and investment to always be learning and striving to improve and update my skills to give my clients the best photography that I can offer.
Here is one of my favorite images from a wedding I photographed. This image took a lot of quick thinking and photography skills that I have invested in and I am pretty proud of it even years later!!
High quality Products. This is one area in my boutique photography business that I am very strict about…quality. There are lots of “big box” stores and companies that sell prints and canvases at low prices, but as we all know “you get what you pay for”. For years, I have searched and tried many different labs to find the best and most unique products for my clients. Not the cheapest at a quality that will “work”…but products that are guaranteed to last a lifetime, look amazing and be treasured by generations. I use specific labs for specific products that I believe they specialize in…to ensure my clients are honestly getting what we believe is the very best in the industry.
Sadly, digital files can not do this…..and although we do offer digital files for purchase we always want to encourage our clients to invest in products that they will proudly display in their home for many years to come. We want our clients to remember a sweet memory and moment each day they walk by their wall portrait in their home, and years later remember how little and sweet their baby was and never forget those memories. I found this great image below recently from a site called spoutingphotographer.com and it explains so much. Digital is wonderful but dangerous, and we will address the warnings about digital files in another blog….but for now I will just leave it at this image. 😉
Customized and Personalized. When a mom reaches out to us to photograph her newborn baby, we always ask them to bring something that is sentimental or personal to them or the baby. It makes the session much more unique to them! We have had moms bring a blanket, stuffed animal, a homemade antique table cloth that was a very special heirloom piece in the family, baseball hats, hunting equipment, and even dad’s firefighter uniform. I am always inspired all the more when families bring in pieces of their life and legacy to a session…not just newborn but children and family sessions as well.
Here are some examples below….dad in the military, parents own several Biggby Coffees, favorite stuffed animals, and dad is a fireman!
Some moms are really creative and have some fun ideas….such as a theme or style…below are some images that showcase their ideas and then we help bring them to life!! We can only do this if we take the time to listen and get to know our clients and have the time to focus on them! These newborn sessions take about three hours…we block off half of our day to work with these little ones to ensure they are getting our very best attention….a customized boutique photography experience!!
Customer Service. This one comes pretty easy to me. Simply treat your customers as you would want to be treated. Our goal is always to provide the highest quality of everything and do it with a great experience and the fastest turn around time we can provide. I had one client give us a great compliment once she stated that we are not the cheapest but we are the best….and the fastest she has ever worked with. That meant so much to me that she valued our quality to know its worth the investment and the bonus is she is getting your photographs quickly. We hear often that we are very patient with our little clients….we are moms too, we get it, and understand when little ones need extra time to warm up to the camera….or if we just have a short window of time to photograph little ones before they call it quits. 😉
If we only provide the very best products and photography but not the best at customer service…we have failed. We are always talking of new ways to improve our service to our wonderful clients. Our goal is to run a business with a servant’s heart.
Small Business. When you choose us as your photographer, you are not only getting all of the above….but you are supporting a local small business. A business that helps three moms that work together to have dream jobs serving others by creating gorgeous photographs that will be treasured for a lifetime. You are supporting a business that supports a sweet little girl in Guatemala through World Vision, and allows my little girls to go to gymnastics class every week and in turn support that little gymnastics small business. Its a beautiful supportive circle as we living in a community buying and selling from each other!
So thank you from the bottom of my heart to those of you that have supported me and my small business….we will continue to strive and do our very best to provide a boutique photography experience!