It may seem like we drank a bottle or two of haterade before writing this post however, we just want to explain where we are coming from as well as our point of view.
Although Groupon, Living Social, and Amazon Local may be a great way for some companies to advertise or offer a promotion, it does not make financial sense to most small business like us. Let us explain the process in further detail and fill you in on how Groupon, Living Social, and Amazon Local works.
If You Don't offer Group Deals, Do You Offer Any Deals At All?
Of course! If you are a legitimate non-profit organization, we offer very generous discounts. If you are renting a photo booth for a school, we also offer discounts. We also offer a special weekday (Mon.-Thurs.) rate as well. Finally, we price match any competitor's price. In some instances, there are some conditions that apply. Contact us and we can explain. We are confidant that you won't find a better deal or a better photo booth company for your event.
The Fine Print and Dirty Little Secrets with Groupon/Living Social/Amazon Local
1. As a consumer, the scary part of purchasing a deal through these types of websites is that the company can cancel your reservation at any time. With important lifetime events like weddings, anniversary parties, proms you do not want a company canceling on you at the 11th hour.
2. Most of the time, when you purchase a photo booth rental through websites like Groupon, the package is very bare-bones. If you want to use props, unlimited prints, and other "upgrades," you will have to purchase them a la carte. When you add everything together, the Groupon deal is not much cheaper than the original price.
Not Good for Small Companies
Our minimum price for a two hour booth session runs $600. If we wanted to advertise on Groupon, they would want us to offer the deal at $300. Groupon then takes on average, a 50% cut of the price leaving us with $150. We pay our attendants a fair wage (above minimum wage), pay for the upkeep of cameras, printers, computers, software updates, photo paper, scrapbooks, scrapbook supplies, photo books, USB flash drives, travel costs, as well as replace and add to our costume collection. There is no way, no how we could offer a Groupon deal like that and still survive as a business. Many companies are either large enough to absorb these losses or write off these losses as part of their advertisement costs. We feel that our products and services are far superior to our competition and we would rather do 50 events a year vs. 100 events at half price. Our motto is and always will be quality over quantity.
The True Bargain Hunter
We like a great deal as much as the next guy/gal but the problem with a Groupon deal is that the bargain shopper sees an underpriced photo booth rental and think that all photo booth companies should have similar price points. When they start to compare, they think that other companies are overpriced. The reality is that all photo booth companies are not the same and their packages can vary widely. For example, a photo booth company may only charge $500 for a two hour service but charge $100 for a photo guestbook and other "upgrades." Our prices may seem inflated but we would rather be up front with our costs and upon further comparison, we are confident that you will realize that we offer a product and service that is very competitively priced.
It's Not All About the Benjamins
Many people may confuse our unwillingness to offer coupons or discounts as an indication that all we care about is maximizing our profit. This can't be further from the truth. We believe in the importance of our community and give back by choosing a number of non-profit events to sponsor every year. For those we can't completely sponsor, we offer discounts to legitimate non-profit organizations. Read more about this option here.
Thoughts from a Business Owner: Work Smarter Not Harder
As someone who has owned and operated three successful start-up businesses, one of the lessons I learned early on was work smarter, not harder. We live and die by our reputation. We do not need to desperately sell ourselves through websites like Groupon to get our name out there. We owe our success and will continue to owe our success to word of mouth advertising. After all, would you believe a recommendation from a random testimonial or a trusted friend?
Thoughts from a Bargain Hunting Consumer: Quality Matters
I love a deal. Who doesn't? In college, I was known to be "cheap." Quality did not matter as long as I got the cheapest deal. In my mind, the best deal was the cheapest deal. After years of this type of mentality, I realized that quality and price are directly linked. There are times quality may not be that big of an issue and a cheaper product or service will "do," however for important lifetime events such as a wedding, an extra $50 or $100 for peace of mind and superior quality is in my opinion, well worth the extra investment. If you are reading this and still think that the best deal = the cheapest deal, we respect your opinion and would be happy to recommend some other photo booth companies to you.
Top 10 Reasons to Choose InstaPix
We have put a lot of thought into pricing our packages. We charge what we charge because honestly, we think we are worth every penny. With our professional equipment, technology, customer service, as well as options for customization, we believe that we simply cannot be beat. Again, you get what you pay for...and in the case with InstaPix, you get a whole lot.
1. Use of all high quality props.
2. Canon 70D DSLR (Not your typical bottom of the barrel DSLR.)
3. High Resolution images available for download from our website.
4. Uploaded photos within 24 hours of your event.
5. Proper lighting set up.
6. Custom designed templates included in ALL packages.
7. A variety of basic and premium backdrop choices.
8. Instant professional quality prints within 8-10 seconds.
9. Video clip option. (Exclusive to InstaPix.)
10. Magnetic 2.5"x3.75" photo book that can be placed on your refrigerator. (Exclusive to InstaPix.)