Date: July 10, 2017

Increasing your portrait sales (without sounding like a salesman!) marks the sign of a very self-aware photographer. What if we had a simple way to include a product our clients would enjoy with something they were already wanting to or planning to purchase? Like many photographers, my most popular product, year after year, are my digital files.

Specializing in high school senior portraits, my clients can’t wait to get their hands on digital files so they can begin the bragging process across the gamut of their social media lives. With digital files generally sold at a premium price, it can be challenging (and sometimes impossible!) for existing and potential clients to understand the actual value of such an intangible product. I mean, “right-click, copy, paste”, right? “That’s not $100 worth of work.”

One solution that works wonders for me to increase the perceived value of digital files involves pairing them with tangible products. You know, the stuff we all hope and dream our clients turn their digital images into eventually. This satisfies both my seniors and their ever-so-loving parents. The seniors get the digital files and the folks covering the bill get a tremendous keepsake product! It’s a win-win-win (for me, also).

So what products can you begin offering to your clients to pair with those digital files? I currently offer two different ways to sell my digital files. The first product I offer is a complete set of digital files when a client purchases a 5×7 Print + USB Box from me. With that in mind, there are various ways you can implement a full-gallery technique:

-Print all the photos from your session and place them in a box (glass, wood or linen). PSCo has numerous options for both 4×6 and 5×7 print sizes (with 8×10 options on the way).

-Provide a full set of printed images in a pouch or slipcover.

What if you only want to offer a select few images from your session instead of the full set? The second solution I use for my clients is to offer them their favorites from the session, and include the digitals for the selections they make.

I’ve found the easiest way to achieve this includes selling a Slip-In Album with a select number of sides paired with the digital files of the images included in the album. My Slip-In Album comes with 5 sides and allows for 10 images within the album, which are selected by the client during our in-person sales appointment. I then provide a digital download of the digitals (they can also select to have them delivered on a USB for an additional cost) and sell each digital file, beyond the 10 selected, a la carte.

Another method I utilize regularly involves mounting select favorite 5×7 images on styrene and placing them in a print box with a USB that includes all of the digital images. Do you have to offer all the digital files when presenting the box? The choice is up to you on how many images will be on the USB drive!

These two methods for presenting digital files allow me to offer digital files at different price points depending on the budget of my clients. They are able to get their favorite digital images from the session and receive a beautiful keepsake product that they can continue to use for the future. This product acts as a tangible reminder of the great experience they had with my brand, versus just a selection of digital photos buried on the hard drive of their computer. Let your creative juices flow and start exploring different products that you can use to sell alongside your digital files!


Jared Hernandez is the owner of Jared Rey Photography based in Dallas, TX. He runs a successful High School Senior portrait business named JRey Seniors. He enjoys getting to know his clients and figuring out the best way to tell the story of who they are at this moment in time. Follow him on instagram @jaredrey.