Obtaining Client Feedback
In a previous blog post, I mentioned the importance of obtaining client feedback. As creatives, we look for affirmation from others — specifically from our clients as we document a personal time, so it is only natural to desire feedback. Additionally, I like to obtain feedback from persons I trust on my personal photography work and projects. I think feedback can help us grow. In college, I particularly enjoyed receiving feedback from my professor and peers during photography critiques, which were constructive.
My clients share feedback with me. If, however, you are looking for ways to have clients express their feelings, it is best to establish a relationship before the photography shoot. If your client interactions are largely transactional in nature without personal communication then you cannot really expect them to treat you any differently than other business interactions. In most clients’ minds, you are doing what they hired you to do — regardless of how personal you feel it is.
If you would like feedback from clients, I recommend that you to find ways to care and connect with your clients throughout your working relationship. This will yield stronger communication and personal conversations that lead to written responses you seek and desire.
Absolutely on point, Katherine. As a Client Experience manager with a Fortune 50 company in a fairly recent past life, I cannot hesitate to concur with you on the points you’ve made here. I have learned that in the strictest sense, it really doesn’t matter what I think of a client photograph; if the client doesn’t like it, it’s no good. Your clients must know that you value their opinions and feedback, and that you understand you are there to serve them – not the other way around. Let them know up front that communication is a crucial part of the way you work. And a follow-up note or email a couple of weeks after you’ve concluded business is a great way to let them know you haven’t forgotten about them, and to garner feedback after they’ve had a while to live with your work.