When working with color, we try to achieve the largest range of color the image has to offer, from the yellows to the blues, and the reds to the greens. Our approach is to find the point where the image has the maximum amount of contrast, while still preserving the detail in the highlight (white) and in the shadows (black). It's this total range of contrast that gives the image its appeal, and what further separates a finished, professional image from a friend's snapshot.
We also listen to what the image tells us to do. As "zenlike" as that may sound, there has to be a reason for everything. Once you know the general rules, you can start breaking them, depending on the needs of the image. If an image has a vintage feel, we might fade back the colors a little bit. If the image is classic, we might turn it black and white. And if an image has a lot of pop, we'll work with it to make sure that the color is as vibrant as it can be.