Shoot Concept: Lifestyle, chef portraits and plated food images to promote a resort
Licensing: Three years of regional Advertising, Collateral and Publicity use of 20 images, in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee only
Location: Resort in Georgia
Shoot Days: Two
Photographer: Southeastern hospitality and lifestyle specialist
Agency: Client Direct
Client: Independent Resort Property
Here’s the estimate (click to enlarge):
I thought it would be interesting to share this particular hotel lifestyle estimate on the heels of our previous Pricing & Negotiating post so I could highlight the difference in value between two nearly identical projects. Both were two-day lifestyle hospitality shoots at a single hotel property. The major differences are the size and reach of the clients and the breadth of the licensing. In the previous post, we were working through an ad agency for an international hotel chain to shoot 17 images for national use, with much higher expectations and production requirements. In this case, we were dealing directly with a single high-end hotel client interested in licensing 20 images for regional use.
Concept: The client wanted to highlight the property through a variety of available-light lifestyle images featuring talent enjoying the grounds, restaurants, services, and amenities. The client compiled a short list of 10 scenarios from which they hoped to license 20 images (2 per scenario). The scenarios would feature resort staff and anywhere from 1-4 non-professional talent (friends/family of the marketing team) and range from plated dining room scenes to guests checking in, to talent strolling around the property’s more photogenic landscape and architectural elements. From our perspective, the production would be pretty minimal. The photographer would simply need to book his assistants, pick up gear, show up, and start shooting. The client would source the talent, handle wardrobe, props, food, catering, all styling, and of course, the location. This told us a lot about the client’s production expectations and hinted at the budget.
Licensing: The 3-year licensing duration, 10 scenarios, and the fact that we were working with a high-end client all applied upward pressure on the value. Exerting downward pressure was the lack of an ad agency (which could indicate smaller ad buys/less extensive use), the fact that the client was a single, somewhat remote property, and finally the geographical limitation of the licensing. As it turns out, the client planned to primarily advertise on the web, only running 2-3 print ad insertions/year in a few local magazines, solidifying our assumption of a smaller ad buy. Weighing all of these factors, I priced this out at 1500.00 for the first two scenarios, 750.00/scenario for 3-6, and 500.00/scenario for 7-10, bringing the fee to a total of 8000.00. I checked my rates against a couple of pricing sources. Corbis doesn’t display regional or state-by-state rates. BlinkBid’s bid consultant recommended 621.25-887.50 per image per year for a regional Local Small Business to purchase comparable licensing, which was in the ballpark. Photoshelter’s stock pricing interface suggests a rate of 15,000/image for one year or 22,000.00/image for three years for regional collateral and advertising use, but its pricing criteria didn’t allow me to hone the use as much as I needed to in this case.
As a side note, we use a few general rules of thumb when it comes to increasing or decreasing fees based on volume or duration. In general, doubling the duration does not necessarily double the value to the client—campaigns/images get tired, and people/property/styles/trends change. Also, doubling the number of images licensed does not necessarily double the value to the client. Accordingly, I’ll add 50% to increase the duration from one to two years and 100% to increase the duration from one year to three years. With respect to increasing the number of images, the second is typically valued at 50% of the first, unless the image represents an additional unique concept, in which case we would value the image/licensing closer to 100% of the first image. At a certain point, I may introduce additional price breaks if we get into larger quantities.
Photographer Production Day: The resort property was about 2 hours from the photographer’s home so I included one full “photographer production day” to cover the half day of round trip travel and half day of walk-through at the resort the day before the shoot.
First Assistant/Digital Tech, Local Assistant: I estimated for three full days for the first assistant/digital tech, which covered two full shoot days, four hours of round trip travel time, and four hours of walk-through time. 500.00/day is a normal rate for tech but wouldn’t typically include necessary equipment, and certainly not a full-blown workstation cart which normally rents for 750-1000.00 depending on the setup. In this case, the photographer would shoot with a DSLR tethered to his own laptop running Capture One. We opted in this case not to charge for the laptop rental. As for the local assistant, we included one for both shoot days.
Equipment Rental: The photographer planned to rent two DSLR bodies (300.00/day), 2 fast lenses (65.00/day), two strobe kits for supplemental light if needed (300.00/day), and a variety of silks, scrims, frames, and stands (~235.00/day). All of the gear would have to be rented for three days since the photographer and tech would have to pick it up before the walk-through.
Lodging Nights: The resort was fully booked during the shoot window so the client could not offer to provide lodging. We estimated rooms for the photographer and digital tech for 2 nights at a nearby commuter hotel.
Images processed for editing & Select Processed for Reproduction: This covered the time, equipment, and costs to handle the initial import, edit, and upload for client review and basic processing (color correction and blemish removal) for the 20 selects. Anything over and above the basic processing would be considered retouching and be billed at 150.00/hr, which is covered in the terms and conditions.
Miles, FTP, COI, Parking, Meals, Tolls, FTP, Misc: I estimated 200.00 for mileage, 50.00 per person per day for meal costs to cover breakfasts and dinners, 50.00 for the COI, 100.00 for the FTP and 150.00 for parking, tolls, and miscellaneous expenses.
Results: The photographer shot the job and has already begun discussing the next project with the client.
Marketing note: This project came about because the photographer had managed to set up a meeting with a marketing manager at the resort. Within a few weeks, the photographer received a request for an estimate. It just goes to show marketing is all about putting yourself out there and occasionally being in the right place at the right time.