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Tips & Tricks

Sal Cincotta On Pricing Your Work | A Good Look At The Psychology Of The Sale

By Kishore Sawh on June 24th 2015


No matter how much some of you may try to kid yourselves that you’re all about photography as an art and not a business, if you aren’t working elsewhere to provide income to cover your living expenses, it’s very much a business. You may be an artist at heart, but it’s the business that allows you to practice your art and sustain yourself and maybe a family.

That said, artists don’t always make the most effective business people, and like SEO, something as fundamental as understanding pricing and the psychology of the sale so often overlooked in terms of importance. If you were to Google, “psychology of the sale,” you’ll end up with decades worth of reading, and probably a lot of YouTube clips featuring Alec Baldwin, or Leonardo DiCaprio selling a pen. That’s all well and good, but listening to people who are successful at the business of photography is probably more poignant; people like our own Pye with Lin & Jirsa Photography, and Sal Cincotta, to name a few.



If you’ve been on the photography circuit for any length time, Sal is a name you’re likely acquainted with. Sal Cincotta Photography is synonymous with WPPI awards, Creative Live and encompasses several brands. In 2007, his gross sales were less than $50K; today his business is a million dollar brand. His past employment at Microsoft has no doubt given Sal brilliant corporate insight and makes it easier to understand why he is a hugely sought after photography business consultant. In the video herein, he gives you ten free minutes of his time where he encompasses what would probably take you tens of hours to pick from multiple sources.

He speaks of the strategy behind offering fewer package options, why to introduce your highest package first, and more. No matter where you are in your business, this will likely excite you and entice you to learn more. I would recommend our somewhat recent interview with Jeff & Lori from Indigo Silver Studios where you are sure to learn a tremendous amount – the approach is different but also effective. See the video below and link to the full article here.

If you are wanting to take SEO by the horns and wield it as a magnet for clients, you may want to check out the SEO & Web Marketing Guide to give some Miracle Grow to your studio online.

You can find more from Sal on his site.

Here’s the clip with Alec Baldwin from Glengarry Glen Ross, to save you the search.

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A photographer and writer based in Miami, he can often be found at dog parks, and airports in London and Toronto. He is also a tremendous fan of flossing and the happiest guy around when the company’s good.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Robert Eilers

    I saw this video one through sprouting photographer. Great content.

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  2. Callib Carver

    Really gave me something to think about as I rebrand and reopen my studio.

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  3. Tom Leonard

    Sal Cincotta tells it like it is and is “Spot On”!

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  4. Daniel Thullen

    “Pull through”, “Sales psychology” not terms you come into contact much on photography web sites. Sal certainly understands the business of photography. I’ll add him to my photography “mentors” list, which of course Pye Jirsa is high on as well!

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  5. Justin Eid

    Great Info! Thakyou Sal and Slr Lounge

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  6. J. Dennis Thomas

    I consistently have been pricing lower than what I know the work is worth just to get jobs. I just bid a job that 5 years ago I would have charged $5000 for at $2500. Of course there “was no money in the budget for photography” and the design agency which was the referral told me the company were going to stock photography.

    We’re talking about a boutique hotel that charges up to $500/night without batting an eyelash. But they can’t afford anything better than stock photography even though they hired one of the most expensive graphic design firms in Austin to make their ad campaign?

    I got bills to pay. In the past I would have just turned down a job where I had to come in at 50% less. Can’t do it anymore.

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  7. Brandon Dewey

    Great video, a lot of great tips.

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  8. Graham Curran

    I’m sure that I’m not alone in underpricing and subsidising my photography. This is a good reminder to be more businesslike.

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