The basic definitions of Price and Cost:
Price: The amount of money expected, required, or given in payment for something.
Cost: The price paid to acquire, produce, accomplish, or maintain anything.
(The key pieces of these definitions are "required" in the price definition and "maintain" in the cost definition. As in how long will paying the minimum "required" price allow you to "maintain" an acceptable level of service? if you ever receive appropriate service at all.)
I talk to too many people who say that they just love their photographer because they’re the best. And when pried a little further… ‘They’re the cheapest!’ The last thing I want to hear when people describe my services is ‘he’s the cheapest!’ Think about that… when someone describes someone or something as ‘cheap’, it’s hardly a compliment. Then, when I pry even further why they love their photographer, they have trouble coming up with anything else. There is a reason why they’re the cheapest, and it has nothing to do with value.
Unless you are very lucky, chasing the lowest price will cost you, it is just a matter of when. The other point to consider is that this is just one aspect of the business relationship, this doesn't take into account other areas that could suffer such as: customer service, overall quality of work, resources at the customer's disposal, and most important- YOUR BRAND. This is something to consider the next time you have a chance to save $50.
The Main Value to An Agent - the main value we bring to an agent is NOT ONLY "better photos". It is establishing a "personal brand" that communicates to the public that a quality experience can be expected if you call them. When you choose one quality photographer, you’re also getting consistency. You’re getting a ‘look’ that when perspective clients shop and view your portfolio they not only immediately see the high quality of the work, but that it’s stylistically consistent. That you’ve worked hard on your brand.
Whether it’s myself, or someone else, I highly recommend that you interview your potential photographer. Why techniques do you use? Which post-processing techniques do you use? Will I work with the same photographer on every listing to achieve uniform results? Do you stand by your work?
"You get what you pay for"