The Importance of Written Proposals

Have you ever had a situation where what you said and what someone else heard was not anywhere close to the same thing?  My parent’s favorite quote after 52 years of marriage is “I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I’m not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.”(Robert McCloskey)
In the past, we relied on emails and phone calls to clarify information and then sent an invoice once we came to terms and hoped to be paid when we arrived to shoot the virtual tour.  While this worked almost all the time, we did run into a few situations where the client did not understand some aspect of our terms even though I thought I had explained them clearly.  This puts both us and the client in an awkward position and has the potential to cause hard feelings down the road.
We started using written proposals for our virtual tour business this year to make sure that what we say and what our client hears is the same thing.  Our proposal outlines what we are agreeing to provide and the terms under which we agree to provide it.  Once we have confirmed a time and date to shoot and agreed upon a price, I send a confirmation email with the proposal attached and ask that it be signed prior to the shoot.
The proposal is not a lengthy contract and is certainly not binding but it does outline our expectations in a clear, concise bullet form. If there are questions about our terms, I want to be able to address those PRIOR to showing up to shoot.

Vision Quest Virtual Tours provides high definition 360º tours for healthcare, hospitality and education.  We have photographed tours in 31 states but when we aren’t on the road, we split our time between Charleston, SC and Quincy, IL.  For more information or to schedule a tour, visit us at