As a photographer, you are in a unique position. You have the opportunity to offer both traditional product-based gift cards but can also branch out into much-sought-after experience gift vouchers too.
I’m sure we have all had experience with traditional gift cards. The concept is that the customer purchases a gift voucher of particular value for the recipient to then spend on as many or as few products as they wish. This makes a great gift and is always popular amongst customers.
But what about when a client is looking for something really special? Something that will stand out from the crowd and give the receiver something they can cherish forever? This is where the experience gift voucher comes into its own.
What Is An Experience Gift Voucher?
An experience gift voucher allows a customer to purchase a gift card for an experience, in its entirety. The recipient of the gift can then redeem the experience whenever they are ready.
You might have seen this type of voucher in the past offering experiences such as a pasta making class, flower arranging workshop or a kayaking afternoon.
Why Should You Offer Experience Gift Vouchers?
Ensures Future Bookings
The main aim of any small business is to procure enough work to see them through the year comfortably. For a photographer, this means getting as many bookings as possible. Experience gift vouchers are a great way of boosting those bookings because you know that with every sale of an experience gift card, you are sure to have a customer redeem the experience at a later date.
Gives You Cash Now
In the current climate, we could all do with a bit of financial help. The beauty of any gift voucher is that you receive the funds now regardless of whether the recipient ever redeems the voucher. This is great for any time of year, but especially during those quieter months.
Boosts Your Customer Base & Repeat Business
Unlike with a product based gift card, an experience gift voucher allows the recipient to really interact with you and your business. This gives you the opportunity to turn them from a new customer into a loyal client and to ensure more potential business in the future.
What Should You Include In Your Experience Gift Voucher?
If you are going to offer an experience gift voucher you need it to be three things – something extra special, value for money and to live up to expectation. Here are a few tips and tricks to help you achieve just that.
Think About Your Customer Base
No matter how many photographic genres you specialise in, there will be one or two that are your most profitable. This is the best place to start.
Think about your customer base and what you already offer them. Is there a particular group that you could do something special for? Is there a specific theme you could tap into that customers would like?
For example, if you specialise in family and children’s portraits maybe you could offer a special teen photoshoot party? All teenagers want to look great, don’t they! Alternatively, focus on the time of year or upcoming holidays. Perhaps you could offer a special Halloween dress-up session?
Make It Special
One of the best ways to sell your gift voucher to clients is to make the experience extra special. Consider what extras you could add to your chosen experience.
For example, if you are offering a makeover session, could you include hair and beauty professionals? Alternatively, if you are offering a pet portrait, could you partner with a local dog groomer?
Make The Offer Clear
To ensure that you, the customer and the recipient are happy with the experience, you must make sure you are clear about what is and what isn’t included in the offer. You might want to cover information such as:
- How many people (or pets) are included in the session?
- Are there specific locations that the experience must take place in?
- What exactly are the special extras included?
- Is there anything the recipient must have or bring with them to the experience? e.g. proof that they are the recipient of the voucher.
- Are there any special products included as part of their gift voucher package?
Although it is very popular to have a deadline date in the UK in other countries (e.g in the US) it is not legal to put a deadline date on a voucher. If the customer has a voucher, the value of that voucher is valid at any time. So make sure you are within the realms of the law.
Offer Gift Vouchers To Recipients Too
A great way of further boosting your business is to offer the recipient of any gift voucher the opportunity to purchase their own.
Perhaps you could suggest that they purchase a product-based gift voucher to say thank you to whoever bought them the experience with your business?
Need some inspiration for your experience gift voucher web pages? Take a look here!