So here's what you need to know about Interface talent...from the inside. As an employee at the Gaithersburg, MD office, I know a lot. I encourage people to run the other way as fast as they can! This company is out for money!! This is how it works.....
First, you sign up online or you get "scouted" at the mall! Once they have your contact information, they will constantly call until you come in for your appointment! They tell you how important the "evaluation" is and that you can't reschedule the appointment .
Evaluation-They tell you to be on time, but you may be waiting hours to be seen by a director . So when you come in, you fill out a form, then someone takes you to a room and tries to sign you up for "Project Reality" which is BS! It's free to sign up, then $20/mo. The person that signs you up gets $5 for reach person that agrees to do it. So they ask you for a card.
.....and this is all before you see a director
Then you go back in the lobby and wait again. Meanwhile your eval form is given to Natalie (the VP). She then looks over it and gives the clients to directors based on where they live, if they had a credit card, family size, and if she thinks they have money.
After that, the director comes to get you and takes you to their office where they begin the "evaluation". Truth is, they accept anyone that can pay. They have a script and a list of rebuttals. They go over a script and then whip out the prices after they get you all excited. The minimum photo package is $595 and goes to $5500.
What they don't tell you is ...
1. The prices are negotiable. The director can give you whatever price they want . If you resist or say you don't have it, the price will drop.
2. The director gets 9-10% in commission on the packages. The higher the package, the more money they get on their paycheck. They will insist on the highest package.
3. They don't want you to leave without putting something down. They will pressure you all the way down to $50 deposit. They will even step out and bring in Natalie or Roz to come "save the sale" or the phone will ring and they are told what to say because they have cameras in every office. If the director gets a "zero" (no sale) , it's bad on their numbers.
4. There will be other or "additional" fees! They talk real fast and tell you that after the photo shoot, you will purchase your head shots and comp cards. They barely go over it, then they have you initial the contract and don't go over it with you.
5. Cancellation Policy! There's a fee to reschedule and/or cancel. They have you initial real fast too. They say you have 3 days to cancel, but the actual agreement says they must receive a cancellation letter within 3days of the date on the agreement
After the "evaluation" , you come back to get your photos done.
So on your second visit.....
You come in for your photo shoot. First of all, you may be there all day. You first have to talk a girl in an office . She will then collect the balances (if a balance is owed) , and schedule you for marketing.
What they don't tell you is....
1. If you spent more than $1000 on your photos and it was paid in full during your "evaluation", they will send you directly to marketing. That is because to them, you have money and they need to bring in money on photo shoot days which are Fri, Sat, and Sun.
2. If you have 4 outfits or less...she will try to "upgrade you" to get more outfits ...which means more money . The upgrade is $100 per outfit...which is way cheaper than the initial cost. Guess what, she gets commission from upgrades.
So here you may be spending more money, yet again.
So the last step is Marketing!
So marketing is supposed to be the most important part...the main reason for coming to Interface in the first place. This is when you come view your photos and meet with yet another director to talk about "furthering your career".
What they don't tell you is
1. The minimum package is $360 and can be as much as $2400 depending on length of time. Most people are shocked when they see the prices because they weren't expecting to dish out that much. A lot of people can't afford the minimum.
2. Prices aren't set in stone. I've seen people get marketed for $50 for 3months. This is because the company would rather get something than nothing. The director gets commission. The director is there to make the company money. They will even offer free photo shoots to sweeten the deal.
3. They talk about two marketing options....but only use one...the online option. They hype you up about the comp cards in the first meeting, but push the online option. No one prints the cards! They make them so expensive that it makes sense to get the online option. The directors also have a different script to follow.
4. Promotions team....not a whole team!!! There are 2 guys in the promotions office that work on getting people opportunities . There isn't enough volume to get the 80% results they boast about.
5. Before you go in your meeting, the director picks your photos and you get to see them. And the assistants "brief" them on you....like if the client was nice, or if they had a card, or if they liked the pictures.
6. If you say no....they will lower the price for you, or have Natalie, Roz or a "senior director" come in to get you to do something. They don't want you to think about it or leave the office until you pay something.
7. They will have you call people to get money over the phone, transfer money between accounts, and even swipe your card for declining amounts until it goes through.
8. If you say you didn't know about the marketing, they will pull out a copy or the first agreement or pull up yours and show where you initialed. Or they will ask if you remembered he director holding up the cards. Basically telling you, you should've known about it and now you have to do marketing or the money you paid for the photo shoot was a waste.
9. Credit card authorization forms....if you can't afford to pay, they will set up payments to be deducted from your card on specified dates. If you ever changed your mind and wanted to cancel after the 3 days, you are out the money you already paid. They will keep running you card until it goes through even if it's not a on date you authorized.
Before I go....here are some phrases to listen out for
"I won't let money be a reason this child (or you) don't get this opportunity"
They say that right before they break a deal
"I want you to invest your money, not spend it"
"I don't want you to be penny wise and dollar stupid"
"Where there's a will there's a way"
"If you don't go through with marketing, your pictures will be deleted"
"This is a sacrifice "
"This is an opportunity that most kids don't get and you can make it happen"
"Even if you get to be in one commercial, that's something most people will never do"
If the other parent isn't at the appointment ...
"Mom/dad trusts you right, that's why he/she married you"
"Just pick one now, then go home and talk to your husband/wife. If they say they want a divorce, then there's no fee to cancel"
They'll even ask how much money you make, if you're working, if anyone can help you...
If you mention reviews online...
"Those are people who didn't go through with our services"
"We can't please everybody"
"We have an over 80% success rate"
"Unfortunately everyone can't afford this so they get mad"
I hope this helps. It's your decision . If you decide to come to Interface, at least you have a little more information