June 1, 2015

Tough Emails: How Do I Respond to THAT??


We’ve all been there. And if you’ve been in business for any length of time, you’ve probably been there a bunch of times. It just goes with the territory. And the “it” that I’m talking about in this case is dealing with uncomfortable client emails. At this point, we’ve seen it all from people wanting us to price match the “better package” they got from another photographer, to people asking if we couldn’t just totally change our style (all light & airy, no black & white, bridal party jumping in the air!) for just one day for their wedding, to people who used so much red ink on our contract that it looked like a crime scene, to a five page shot list, to a mother of the bride who demanded that we come into work on Christmas Eve so that she could make just one more print order.

As the CEOs & faces of our businesses, it falls on us to handle the tough questions we get in a way that both stands up for our business & our own life balance boundaries….but also handles them with grace and in a way that makes those clients feel loved, respected & understanding where we’re coming from. That’s a tough order! Plus, if I’m going to be a smart CEO & business woman, it also means that I can’t be spending all my time trying to craft the perfect response word by word from scratch every time one of those tough situations come in. We all know this by now… when an email like that comes in, we give way too much of our time, energy & stress to it when we could be doing things like building our business or taking good care of the other 98.99% of couples who never cause us trouble. Enter Pencil & Lens!


We are SO excited about this! Our good friend Anna Sawin (who we met when we were first getting started so we’ve known her nearly a decade) has just launched a brand new collection- the wedding photographer’s inbox solution! (Amen!) And what I love about this, is that if you knew Anna you would know that she is the epitome of grace and class. Everything she does, she does it with such gratitude, heart and elegance. Trust me, SHE is the person you would want writing back to all of your clients if we could all hire her  full time as our email correspondence concierge…and now we can!

In her inbox “big bundle”, she has included 75 professionally written email responses  covering everything from workflow to pricing & booking to the stickiest of client & vendor situations. And what’s really awesome about this, is that not only is Anna a photographer herself (so she’s also seen it all), but before that she was a media spokesperson and lead writer for a bunch of CEOs. And that blend makes her the perfect person to know exactly how to handle tough situations to stand up for your business, but to do it in a kind, graceful way that makes people love you even more for how you treat them…even when you’re saying those tough no’s.

Here’s the bottom line. Think about how much time you’ve spent on email this year so far. Heck, think about how much time you spent on it last week. Think about that last tough email that you got and how much time you spent stressing over it, asking your friends what to say, and trying to craft the perfect response. WAY too much time, right? Now think about all the things you could have been doing to grow your business and get BIG stuff done….meanwhile, you were just sitting in your inbox. If we’re going to be smart business owners & CEO’s we have to find ways to FREE up our time from the grind stuff, the stuff that just wears us down, so that we can get on to the stuff that we were created to do.

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So we could just promise ourselves that we’ll sit down & write out our own email responses one day. But that hasn’t happened yet. And as the heart & the head behind your business that isn’t the best use of your time anyway. We have BIG things to do…let’s get out of our inboxes and get on to making them happen!

You can grab your copy of the wedding photographer’s inbox solution (complete with 75  downloadable email signatures) by going HERE!! And when you use the code “J&MLAUNCH” that’s going to get you 10% off. But jump on it, the code is only good through Thursday!!



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