Choosing a photographer is one of the most important decisions you’ll make in the wedding planning process. While other vendors will be a part of your wedding day, the images your photographer takes will become a part of your life—something you’ll look back on for years to come as a reminder of how special that day was and how you felt saying “I do” to the love of your life. As I go about my day, I see prints from my wedding spread around my house. Each one reminds me of that day and sparks an emotion and memory when I see them. Nothing else from my wedding can do that. Your photographer is that important and here are 5 reasons why you should hire a small photography company over a large chain.
5 Reasons Why You Should Hire a Small Photography Company
As you research potential photography companies, you will find that there are a lot of options and variations, not only in style and pricing, but in product offerings and other details. Large photography companies often have multiple photographers working for them, but they may not offer the personal touch you want for your wedding.
Think about going to Walmart vs going to a small family owned grocery store. How are you going to feel shopping at one versus the other? The convenience of Walmart is fine for shopping, but the level of service is not something you want for your wedding. That’s why a smaller local photography outlet is often the best choice—and is also well worth the investment.
1. You can develop a relationship with your photographer
With a large photography company, chances are you will have a photographer assigned to you, and you may not even have the opportunity to meet with them before your wedding. I’ve heard a few stories about couples thinking they knew their photographer, and then a totally different person showed up on the wedding day. They were shocked, and things didn’t go smoothly as you can imagine.
A local photographer, however, will take the time to meet with your personally, ensuring that you feel comfortable working with them. You will have the opportunity to discuss the details of your wedding and any specific moments you want the photographer to capture. The chance to get to know your photographer personally means you have more opportunities to ask questions and make sure that you get exactly the images you want.
Honestly, getting to meet new people and learn about them is one of my favorite things about being a wedding photographer. I’ve met people that work for NASA, people that played professional sports, and people that love the same things I do.
2. They will work to make you happy
A smaller local photography company has more to lose if a client is dissatisfied with their service, and for that reason, they work especially hard to meet your needs and make sure you’re happy with your images. While a large company may simply assign a photographer to you and move on, a local photographer will sit down with you and work out all the details, from pre-wedding to the day itself until the images and products are in your hands.
A large photography company might photograph 200 weddings or more a year while I will photograph 20-30. That means throughout an entire year, I will only focus on those couples and help them as much as possible.
3. You will know exactly what you’re getting
A local photographer will take time to show you some of their previous work, giving you the opportunity to make sure their style fits the type of images you want. You don’t want to hire a photographer whose style is drastically different from what you’re looking for, but with a larger company, it can sometimes be difficult to know what type of images you will get. No matter how much training they give their photographers, artists are still different, so they will see things differently.
A smaller, more personal photography company will work with you to ensure you get the images you’re dreaming of—and will be honest upfront, well before any contract is signed, if those images are not something they can provide.
4. They will work with your budget
While a larger photography company may offer lower-priced packages, those options may not get you the products or even the hours you need for your wedding day. A local photographer, however, will be understanding of and work with your budget, whether that means developing a payment plan or creating a custom package that works with your allotted budget for photography. With a smaller company and a photographer you can talk to easily, you’re more likely to be able to negotiate a package that works for you and your big day.
That’s something I do all the time. Couples are not the same and neither are their budgets and needs. It’s very easy for me to create a custom package that fits into their budget and gives them the most I can. Big photography companies can’t do that. Prices are set in stone or they have to talk to someone like a manager or cooperate.
5. You deserve that personal touch
Chances are you prefer a local salon to a chain experience because of the difference in service and the relationship you have with your stylist. I’ve seen the same thing with a local jewelry store that I work with. The Diamond Center is so friendly and helpful, and they do whatever it takes to help you out. That’s so different than many of the big name jewelers.
The same goes for a photographer. You want your images taken and edited with skill, but someone who has spent time speaking with you and knows just what moments are most important to you will go into both the photography and editing process with your desires and needs in mind.
A Choice that will last for Decades
A smaller local photography company can offer the attention to detail and personal relationship that a larger company often lacks. When it comes to your wedding photos, you deserve nothing but the best. These are images that you will enjoy for years to come, photos that even your children and grandchildren may enjoy looking back on one day. Choosing a local photographer can help you get the photos you want and make sure your wedding day is just as memorable and special as you’ve planned it to be!