Racking your brain trying to find useful & easy ways to make 2017 more profitable, and enjoyable, for your photography business?
Let me share a few of my “midnight thoughts” with you. You know… the thoughts that come streaming into your brain when you are trying to sleep at night, and your mind wont shut down? It keeps going and going and going… with fabulously creative ideas… that you then only forget once the sun is up?!
Well lucky us… I wrote these down on a piece of paper at my bedside… YAY!
I tend to use these little tidbits myself, so I thought I’d share!
- Mini Sessions Vs Full
If you love shooting, like I do…. and enjoy making money, yet keeping costs down for your clients… then MINI SESSIONS! In fact, I may just switch straight over to ONLY mini sessions this year. Save myself time away from my family… and give my clients the images they want, at a fraction of the regular full session.What will I offer for a mini… thinking $250-400 for mini sessions. Offering 5-8 fully edited images. Spending 10-20 minutes per session. THEN… if I happen to have extra images, allowing the client to purchase those (add’l cost). This way… I get paid for the my work; the images, the editing, the ART… my clients have a quick & fun session… and I enjoy my job and doing what I love.
- Model Calls – Don’t say FREE
Need to Portfolio build? Don’t offer up your services for FREE. You are still working… even if you are building & learning on the way. If you want to have some fun… book a MODEL CALL. IE: “Model Call – Looking for a few sweet faces (ages 6mos-12 mos) to help build my portfolio. What do you, the client get? A session with me, along with 2 digital images of your choice (opportunity to purchase more if desired). Comment below or tag a friend who would be interesed, and I will PM you information” .
This way… you are not saying FREE SESSIONS, which can drag in the wrong kind of client. You are getting a model for your practice & image building… giving them something for their time… and yourself the opportunity to make money with the purchase of extra images. In addition… by “commenting & tagging” you are building fans… in an organic way via Facebook.
- Raise your prices – Cost of Living
If you worked in a office, you would expect yearly raise, right? Cost of living raise… artistic raise, whatever. Being self employed, why would you not deserve a raise as well? It only makes sense.
How to give yourself a raise, without pissing off your clients? This can be tricky… but I have a fun & easy way to book clients WHILE raising prices. This is what I do: “NEWBORN SESSIONS OPEN, DISCOUNTED PRICE! Book before 12/31/16 for your 2017 session, and receive my 2016 pricing! Session costs will be going up in 2017, but if you book now, you will get this fabulous discount on your 2017 session. Email me TODAY to receive the discount!“Then, stick to your price increase… and you can refer people back to this blog post/newsletter, etc. It won’t come as a shock, and you can say “told ya so”.
- Newsletters. DO THIS NOW! Mailchimp, whatever you choose… newsletters are the best & greatest way to reach people who WANT to hear from you. I have seen the biggest success’ in self business by simply having a strong newsletter system.
My favorite & least expensive newsletter…. I use WordPress, and they have a handful of great FREE newsletter plugins. They can pull from people who comment, or signing up. It’s really a fabulous & inexpensive way to keep in touch with your clients & bookings.
- Baby Sitter/Day Care while you work. Do you work from home? Do you have kids at home with you?
Lemme tell you from my own experience… and yes, I spelled LEMME.I started my business in 2006… with my newborn son at home with me. I worked day in and night… with him by my side. It was AWESOME. He sat in his pack n play by my desk… or in his bouncy swing… as I worked 12 hour days. I loved having him with me.Then in 2008 I had my daughter… same thing. She would goo & gah in her pack n play next to me. Or I would have her in my baby bjorn/wrap on me while I worked. We spent a LOT of time together… WORKING.WTH WAS I THINKING…. I was wasting those precious baby years. Wasting THEIR precious baby years.When my 3rd was born, I closed my studio, hired a nanny on certain days, and kept to my strict business hours.
Why? Keep reading… I learned two very important & valuable things with my first 2 babies.1) I missed SO MUCH. Like… SO MUCH! The time I spent working, PLUS taking care of my kids… meant that I worked longer hours (trying to juggle it all). Therefore, I took more time away from being JUST a mom… because they were always with me while I worked. They didn’t have all of the valuable mommy time they DESERVED. And… I jilted myself. BOO HISS!If I had only hired someone… THEY would have been played with more, and I would have had more time to just work… therefore be DONE with work quicker & earlier. MORE MOMMY TIME. I will always and forever regret this… always.2) My work suffered. Because I was juggling mommy & work, I could never really focus 100% on my job. I mean, my work was still in “progress” then, but it was also rushed. I was constantly worried about the next feeding, nap time, diaper change… etc.
So do yourself a favor… and your kids a favor… and your job a favor… add in the cost of a nanny/baby sitter into your pricing. Your children deserve it, your clients deserve it… and YOU deserve it. Even if it’s only days a week, for 2-4 hours a day… IT’S WORTH IT.
xoxo Tracy Joy