No matter what time of year it is, it’s always a good time to focus on increasing bookings for your wedding photography business. Wedding photographers typically book many months in advance, sometimes even years prior. Because of this, any changes and improvements you make today could take quite a while to be reflected in your profits. We have valuable tips to share that can help you learn how to get more business each year.
Wedding Photography Business Tips
When you first sat down to start a photography business, you probably were immediately struck by all the opportunities you had in front of you. And, equally, by all the work you had in front of you. Top of mind, first and foremost, the question of the best ways to book clients is typically the first one to come up. There are so many ways you can reach and book ideal clients. From wedding photography marketing to social media, to networking and more, there are a plethora of ways to increase bookings for your business each year.
Here at ShootDotEdit, we specialize in wedding photography editing. We also know how important it is for you to succeed in your photography business. So, we’ve compiled 27 wedding different photography tips and tricks to help you get started. Whether you are brand new at starting your photography business or are a seasoned pro, there is a tip for everyone here.
It has been said before: your photography isn’t a business until you make a profit. Profit comes from finding people who will pay you for your services. And, in order to find people, you must market your business. It sounds simple on paper, but the application can be much harder. In the end, marketing is really all about putting yourself in front of your target client. In other words, the people who are ideal for you to book. These people typically resonate with your photography, your brand, and your personality.
Depending on how much you know about them, you might know where they gather, what they like to do, and who they like to hang out with. You might know where they like to spend their money, what type of wedding venues suit them best, and what type of vendors they like to work with. In other words, the more you know about your ideal client, the easier it will be for you to find them and market to them.
Marketing to these ideal clients can be done in a number of different ways. The most effective long-term strategy is to use content to engage, attract, and nurture your target market. As a wedding photographer, you have a lot of content already. Your images from previous weddings, engagements, and other shoots are exactly what your target market is looking for. For example, if your ideal client typically gets married at a vineyard, all of the wedding photos you have from vineyards are the perfect content to share.
Content can extend far beyond images and can range into sharing helpful tips and tricks on your blog, website, and email. An example of this would be a blog post featuring a vendor that you work with, that would also appeal to your target bride and groom.
Marketing to your target audience will help you book the weddings you want to shoot, and spend time with couples who you will love.
1. Write down your Goals
“If you don’t know where you are going, you might wind up someplace else.” – Yogi Berra
You must create goals for your wedding photography business, both short-term, and long-term. Short-term goals are smaller tasks you can accomplish immediately, such as posting one wedding per week on your website and blog. Long-term goals focus on your overall business objectives, such as increasing your bookings for next year to a specific number. With your growing wedding photography business, make sure you stay focused on goals that are achievable and allow you to continue having success.
Try creating SMART goals. The acronym stands for:
It’s easy to create goals that are loose and open-ended, and doing so won’t give you the true value that comes with SMART goals. A goal should motivate you, while simultaneously give you a clear objective to focus on. When you are just starting your wedding photography business, there are so so so many things you can do. Having clear goals allows you to cut through the noise and focus on the tasks and action items that will create true value for you and your business.
2. Discover your Audience
At this point, you might be wondering how to determine who your target market is. Determining your audience is vital to your success, and stopping to determine who your target market is is a good use of time. It is easy when you are first starting your photography business to gloss over this step. And, simultaneously, it is difficult to know your audience when you are just starting out. Don’t worry, you can refine it as you go. But, you still want to start now with what you can.
Once you determine your audience, stick to sharing these specifics. If you know that your audience is made up of couples who want to get married outdoors, share images that represent past weddings in locations that will grab their attention. Cater your blog posts and emails to uniquely serving these types of people.
3. Create focused Content
When you think about how to promote a photography business, it is important to focus on what will attract your new customers. Content is one of the most effective ways to show potential couples what you have to offer. Since you just spent months creating content with your camera, share your images on your website and blog. The more content you share, the higher the chance it will appeal to your ideal client.
Here are a few ideas for content you can create as you start your photography business:
- A slideshow of images from a specific venue where you know your target market likes to book
- A short PDF guide that features the top ten steps to planning a wedding
- A blog post showcasing your favorite locations to do an engagement session
- An email that highlights several tips for selecting complimentary floral colors
The list can go on and on. The point is to help your target market. By sharing valuable insights and resources with them, you do several things. First, you attract your target client. For instance, when you share images from your favorite vineyard weddings, you attract people who are naturally interested in vineyards. The more specific you can be, the more refined of a client you will attract. Second, sharing value helps people. By genuinely helping them, they are going to be more inclined to want to work with you.
Your blog is a reflection of you as a wedding photographer, so it is important to place your best content there for potential clients to see. In addition to including images, you can tell a story of the wedding day. You can also share helpful tips for brides who are still planning their wedding day, or past brides who are starting a new chapter in their lives.
You might be asking yourself if a blog is still necessary for today’s online environment. With the rise of so many popular social media sites, many photographers abandon their blog completely, relying on the immediate impacts of social media. In the end, though, this often results in short-term gain but long-term pain for your wedding photography business.[ninja-inline id= 19673]
Blogging, unlike social media, is done on a platform you own. Much like your email list, you own your web domain. Thus, you can control it. And, a blog is perfectly suited for professional wedding photographers. It provides a platform for you to share your images while simultaneously telling your story. The blog is easily archived and quickly searched, which makes it available for many years to come for ideal clients in the future to find.
Social media, on the other hand, is a never-ending feed of new posts and updates. Your post quickly gets lost and is very difficult to be found by future brides and grooms.
Don’t get us wrong – social media is a vital strategy for growing your photography business. Later in this article, we discuss the various social media strategies you should employ. And, a blog is equally as important. Here are the areas of your blog to focus on as your market your photography business.
4. Focus on SEO
A wonderful side benefit of blogging is that you will be catching the attention of Google for future searches. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a complex strategy but, put simply, is all about making it easy for search engines like Google to find your posts, and serve them to future people who are looking on the internet for something similar.
The more you blog, the more opportunities you give Google to show your website to future brides and grooms.
- Google rewards consistent posting. Whereas you might only update your website once per year, you can publish several blog posts each month.
- The combination of images and story (text) make for a powerful post that Google loves.
- Your blog posts will stay relevant for years to come, and Google loves to build your blog’s credibility over the course of many months.
Mastering SEO is necessary for your photography business because it helps you rank higher on search engines, such as Google. Including popular keywords that your target audience searches for can help your content appear in front of them, meaning they will be more likely to see what you have to offer. When you know exactly what keywords attract your ideal client, you will have the opportunity to increase your reach through search engines.
If you don’t have time to blog after each session, you can let a company like Fotoskribe write and publish on your behalf.
5. Create Evergreen Content
Evergreen content refers to specific content that stays relevant as days, months, and years go by. An example of an evergreen blog post would “5 Tips to Streamline Wedding Invitations.” This post can add value to your target market for years to come. And, this will continue to make your blog a wonderful landing spot for your target market to get valuable information.
There are many parts of photography that change, such as preferred techniques and styles. With that being said, there are many aspects of photography that do not change and can stand the test of time. This is something to think about when you are creating content for your customer base. Evergreen content means that the information is true today, as well as five years from now.
Keep in mind – a blog post recapping a recent wedding you did can be evergreen as well. Done correctly, this blog can help future couple’s pick their venue, their coordinator, and other vendors. The blog post can show them examples of your work at a specific location. You can use that blog post down the road to send out to prospective clients when they ask if you have ever shot at that venue before.
6. Post Consistently
In order to consistently share on your blog, you need to have a well-defined strategy. Otherwise, more than likely, you are going to get busy and lose your momentum. One way to stay on track is to create a blog calendar that allows you to plan out exactly how many blog posts you will share per day, week, and month. The more planned out your blog schedule is, the easier it is for your followers to know when to look for new content from you.[ninja-inline id=14322]
A blog calendar will allow you to see what is coming and then build the content ahead of the curve. It also allows you to create consistency in your posting, which Google loves (and so do your readers and followers). Lastly, a blog calendar can tie nicely in with your social media.
Speaking of social media…
If you read the previous section on blogging, you might think that we are sour on social media. And, that couldn’t be more opposite of the truth. You must incorporate social media as an active part of your marketing plan as you start a photography business. Moreover, social media should be part of your larger strategy for booking more clients. When complemented with other marketing techniques, social media is a powerful and relatively quick way to get traction.
As mentioned, various social media platforms are fast (and inexpensive!) ways for you to reach a larger audience. Understanding how to properly use social media can help you learn how to generate leads online and place your content in front of thousands of ideal clients with minimal time and effort. Here are a few social media photography tips to get you going in the right direction.
6. Market to your Target Audience through Facebook
Facebook is a great way to share your images and blog posts with your friends and past clients. They make it easy to post, tag, and link out to your website and blog post. In addition, Facebook gives your friends the ability to share with their audience and tag their friends in images. All of this has a collective effect that helps put your content in front of new people. Moreover, birds of a feather tend to flock together: there’s a good chance that friends of your target market will also be your target market.
Using Facebook as a part of your wedding photography marketing plan allows you to identify your target audience and create advertising campaigns to reach out to them. Not only can you share your content on Facebook, but you can also use the boosting feature to reach couples who are looking for a wedding photographer like you. This is where understanding your target market becomes helpful to your photography business. Facebook Advertising allows you to create highly customized audiences to boost to.
Consider using Facebook to drive traffic to your blog post, rather than just posting the images and text inside of Facebook. As we mentioned in the Blogging section, this strategy leverages the best of both worlds. You take advantage of Facebook’s incredible capability to gather people and share relevant ideas quickly and easily, while also driving them to a domain that you own, all the while gaining SEO benefits along the way.
7. Utilize Your Instagram Page
Instagram was made for photographers and is the perfect tool for wedding photographers to use to reach new clients. Using Instagram as a photographer allows you to share your best images with past, current, and potential clients. Additionally, you can utilize hashtags to get in front of new clients, venues, and vendors. Create a plan for your images that includes posting your best images from each wedding on a daily or weekly basis. Whatever your plan is, you should be consistent so your clients know when to expect new posts from you.
Avoid posting the exact same thing on Facebook and Instagram. While this can make life a lot easier, it isn’t utilizing the native features of each social media domain. For example, hashtags are tremendously popular on Instagram, but barely relevant on Facebook. You want to utilize hashtags on Instagram, but most wedding photographers avoid using hashtags on Facebook.
Also, make sure you take advantage of Instagram for business by converting your personal account into a business account. You’ll get added tracking benefits, and you can link your Facebook business page to your Instagram account.
Lastly, consider incorporating Instagram Stories into your social media strategy as a way to engage your audience. Stories are a great way to showcase your personality, which is a huge driving force in an ideal client’s decision on who to book for their wedding.[ninja-inline id=19663]
More and more, your audience is probably utilizing social media platforms like Instagram, Snapchat, etc. Utilizing Instagram as a part of your social media strategy is a must in today’s wedding photography market.
8. Connect on Twitter
When you post tweets on Twitter on a daily basis, you begin to create a following. The more interesting your content, the easier it is for you to capture the attention of a larger audience. Learn how to write Twitter copy that entices your followers, and makes them want to click on the link you provided. Direct all of your followers to your website and blog so that they can see more of your work, and decide whether they want to work with you.
Let’s be honest – Twitter is not nearly as important these days as some of the other social media platforms. But there is a unique audience that hangs out on Twitter, and it is pretty easy to post on Twitter on a frequent basis. Sharing your blog posts on Twitter is pretty simple, and can be semi-automated with a variety of software.
Similar to Instagram, Twitter is all about the hashtags. Using hashtags on Twitter will allow your tweets to get discovered by target market brides and grooms.
9. Attract Clients with Your Pinterest Page
Pinterest was built as a beautiful way to share photos and links, which is what makes it ideal for a wedding photographer to utilize. Brides are one of the largest categories on Pinterest, as so many use the platform to aggregate and prioritize their ideas and inspirations. With a consistently updated blog, Pinterest is a fantastic platform to cross-promote on.
Create boards that are categorized by wedding and event so your ideal bride knows where to look when she is envisioning her wedding day with you as her photographer. Include links to your website and blog so that when the bride clicks on the image, she is redirected to your galleries.
Photographers like Melissa Jill report that Pinterest is the #2 web traffic generator for her, just behind organic search. Pinterest can be a fantastic way for you to build a base of future brides and grooms to find your work.
10. Develop a Cohesive Social Media Plan
Whatever social media platforms you want to include in your social media action plan, you need to create a cohesive social media plan. Social Media is best utilized as part of a comprehensive plan. If you post haphazardly on various platforms, at various times, you won’t gain nearly the following and thus, the traction. With a plan that you set up, you can consistently post and prioritize, maximizing your benefits.
Your plan should include how often you will post, what days you will post, and who you will be targeting. Other things to decide are whether you will post the same content across all of your channels, or if you will create unique content for each platform.
Social media, combined with blogging, is a powerful 1-2 punch in your wedding photography marketing. Both can quickly become overwhelming without a plan, though. You don’t want to be the photographer that publishes several blog posts and shows up active on 4 social media platforms, only to let it die off after a week or 2. Consistency is key for both blogging and social media, and a detailed plan that is realistic will ensure you get the most out of your efforts.
“If you build it, they will come.” – Kevin Costner in Field of Dreams
Frankly speaking, when it comes to marketing your wedding photography business, this quote is NOT true. Unfortunately, you can publish dozens of blog posts, and post/tweet multiple times per day on several social media platforms, but none of that guarantees that anyone will see it, much less take action.
With all of the content you created and shared with your clients, there needs to be a way for your clients (and prospective clients) to continue to interact with you and your photography business. There are many ways for you to do this on your website, blog, and social media platforms. In general, you want to make it as easy as possible for them to interact with you and your site.
From the outset, encourage sharing. How you want them to share is highly dependent on the platform, but build a base that focuses on sharing. Next, make sure there are opportunities for your audience to engage with you. On Instagram, encourage comments, and respond to each one. On your blog, try a comment contest. Sharing combined with interaction will help your marketing efforts take hold and spread.
11. Add “Pin it” Buttons
Including “Pin it” buttons on your images can encourage a potential client to interact with you on your other networks. This button immediately pins your image to their Pinterest page, allowing them to view it at any time. You can include this button on your wedding photo website, blog, and other social platforms where you will post your content.
Again, this is focused on making it easy for people to share your content. It also helps interaction on a specific platform such as Pinterest.
12. Include Social Share Plugins
The best way for you to reach more potential clients is for you to share more of your content. Another way to make this happen is to encourage your followers to share your content. Adding website plugins that are for social sharing to your blog posts, guides, or newsletters will make it easy for your followers to share your content and help you reach people that are not familiar with you as a wedding photographer.
In addition to reaching more clients through blogging and social media, it is important to create meaningful connections with your vendors and fellow photographers. The better the relationships you create with them, the more referrals will come your way.
When you’re just starting out, networking can be very hard. Let’s just be honest! You might attend a networking event in your area, and walk into a crowded room of people. Looking around, it’s clear that everyone (seems) to know each other. And, you know no one. It is daunting and overwhelming, to say the least.
Networking is much more than going to a local meetup, wandering around with your elevator pitch, and handing out business cards. At its core, networking is about developing meaningful relationships with like-minded vendors.
It’s important to develop relationships with a well-rounded group of vendors. For example, you don’t want to only focus on other vendors who work with your target market client. Expand out and get to know vendors who work with other types of clients.
Networking can seem overwhelming when you’re just getting started, and it’s easy to put it off and not spend the time on it. The value you get is long term – it will take a while for your hard work to pay off. But it is very worthwhile. Most successful wedding photographers who have been in business for 5+ years attribute networking as one of the biggest reasons for their success.
13. Create Relationships with Vendors
A wedding is typically a collection of 5, 10, 15, maybe even 20 different vendors. The coordinator, venue, florist, makeup artist, hairdresser, baker, caterer, transportation, DJ, videographer… the list goes on. Every single one of those vendors run their own business, with their own set of clients. And, more than likely, most of their clients need a wedding photographer. The power of creating relationships with other vendors is clear – it gives you access to a large pool of potential clients!
There are many people involved in helping you capture the best shots for the bride and groom. Making connections with vendors you work with can help you grow as a wedding photography business owner. These relationships can result in lifelong referrals, which means more weddings for you next year.
It is also value adding for your clients. Having a good list of vendors that you can refer to your clients serves them and the vendors you refer. Your clients are given a trusted recommendation, and the vendors you refer are gaining more business.
Bonus: if you create meaningful relationships with the vendors you refer, you get to work with your friends on the wedding day!
14. Create Relationships with other Photographers
What? Why would you create relationships with the competition?
While it might seem odd, fellow photographers can actually turn into one of your biggest referral sources. Other photographers are going to receive inquiries for dates they are already booked. And, just like you can refer other vendors, other photographers can refer each other when they are booked.
Create relationships with photographers that have a similar business model and similar target market as yourself. While it might seem odd at first, this can turn into one of your best referral sources. And, it might even turn into a great relationship where you can add value to each other’s business.
In addition, it is helpful to meet people outside of your local market. There are many photographers in the industry who may do things differently, and who can teach you their techniques. Attend conferences and trade shows where you can meet and interact with photographers who can inspire you to make new changes in your photography business. You might find that photographers outside of your local area are more willing to share with you.
It’s not uncommon for a couple to book you a year or more in advance of their wedding. After they book you, do you have a plan in place to stay in touch with them? Or, will you just drop off the face of the map until a month or two before their wedding?
You might be thinking “well, there isn’t really anything that I need to do for the couple in the months before the wedding.” And, you are probably accurate. Aside from the engagement session, there isn’t really much that you need to be doing with your couple until 4-8 weeks prior.
But you will be missing a huge opportunity. The opportunity is to remain top-of-mind for your couple. The more relevant you are in their planning process, the more often your name will come up in referral opportunities. This isn’t just a self-serving practice. You will also be serving your couple throughout the planning process, helping to lower their stress while simultaneously planning a better event.
Even if you are the best wedding photographer in the industry, if your name is not in front of your ideal clients, it will be hard to book new clients for next year. Staying top of mind will ensure that you are top of mind for referrals.
15. Help before the Wedding Day
Something that will make a large difference in the experience your clients have with you (and how they refer you) is whether you follow up with them before the wedding day. Some couples will book you months in advance of their wedding day, so it is important to reach out to them to offer advice or assistance if they need it. This will make a positive impression on them, and they will mention that to their family and friends.
Don’t know what to reach out about? Here are some ideas:
- Create a checklist of things they should have accomplished at certain checkpoints. For example, 3 months before your wedding you may be thinking about the following… Email them, and ask if they need any help.
- Reach out and ask if they need any referrals for other vendors. They might be struggling to find a DJ or florist, for example.
- Offer to meet up with them to talk specifically about creative ways to use their engagement photos on the wedding day. Who knows? It could lead to a large canvas print sale!
16. Continue helping after the Wedding Day
Don’t let your interaction stop after the wedding. You might have fulfilled all of the services they contracted you for, but that’s no reason not to keep helping them. Remember – birds of a feather flock together. Your couple will know others that are getting married soon, and the more you stay in contact with them, the easier it will be for them to refer you.
After the wedding day is over, and you have sent your clients their images, it is important to stay in contact with them. Sending holiday cards to your clients, thank you cards, or other forms of communication helps you stay on top of your past clients’ minds. This means they will remember the experience they had with you as a photographer and will be likely to refer you to friends and family.
Want to go a little bigger? Host a gathering for all of your past clients at your studio or a local restaurant. If you’ve focused on booking your ideal client, chances are your couples will have a lot in common! Chances are you will also be the center of conversation too.
As a wedding photography business owner, it is important to have a plan in place for post-event sales with every client. Selling additional items to your couple will help you increase your profit and grow your photography business each year.
There is a rumor going around that print sales are no longer relevant. And while printing images is no longer the only way to enjoy and experience wedding photography, prints are still very valuable to your clients. No doubt, avoiding post-event sales is easier. You can just post the edited wedding images online and move on. But, you will be missing a huge opportunity. Not only in terms of profit, but in terms of serving your clients.
17. Learn how to Sell In-Person
Building a relationship with your clients is one of the best ways to master in-person sales. The more comfortable your couple is with you, the easier it will be to help them make decisions about their images and other products you offer.
For many creatives, the thought of “selling” is really a tough pill to swallow. If this is you, spend some time learning and understanding the process before you dive in. For many, the thought of doing it is worse than the process. Once you understand the process, and the value it creates for both your and clients, chances are you’ll feel a lot more comfortable.
Want to put post-event sales on auto-pilot? Use a gallery hosting company like Extra, which markets and sells your prints for you!
18. Ask Questions
The event might be over, but the relationship doesn’t have to stop.
Your clients want to know you are helping them make the best decisions for their wedding images. Make sure you ask as many open-ended questions as possible so that you understand exactly what they want. Asking questions also helps your couple trust you, and when they trust you, they will be more likely to purchase the products and services you have.
Ask your clients how else you can help them. Give them opportunities to continually engage with you. Remember – their wedding was just the beginning of their life together, and there will be many more life events in the future. Maternity, baby, newborn, family portraits… this is just the beginning.
An active blog is a great way to keep your previous clients engaged. Create a monthly or quarterly email newsletter where you email past couple’s your best blog posts, and sprinkle in reminders about the opportunity for portrait sessions. Most importantly, check in every 6 months individually, and ask how you can help.
Throughout your career, what has been the fastest way to spread the word about your photography business? For the vast majority of photographers, the answer is through referrals! People trust the testimonies of others who have worked with you, so this is a way for you to consistently receive more bookings each year.
When you are starting a wedding photography business, getting referrals can seem like the single toughest thing. And no doubt, the longer you are in business, the more past clients you have to refer you. But don’t let this stop you – there are plenty of other areas to get referrals.
And, you can start to build your business with referrals in mind.
19. Ask for Referrals
As you work on increasing bookings, you may wonder how to get more business from existing customers. While you are preparing for the wedding day with the bride and groom, you form a close relationship with them. Because you have this close bond, it is perfectly acceptable for you to ask your couple for referrals. Let them know that you want to work with people who are similar to them, and when they are telling stories to their friends and family, they will remember to talk about the positive experience they had with you.
Again, it might seem difficult to ask for a referral. Just remember you don’t have to be awkward or sleazy about it. Make it a genuine conversation, and you’d be surprised how easy it can be.
20. Make Clients Want to Refer You
Whether you ask your clients for referrals or not, they should want to refer you after the wedding day. Make it easy for them to refer you through the experience you create. Create an unforgettable experience for them; from the booking process to following up, to developing a shot list, to shooting the engagement photos and wedding day, and finally to fulfilling post-wedding orders, they should want to rave about you to their friends. The better the experience, the more likely it is that they will refer you to their family and friends.
Creating an amazing experience isn’t just delivering on your promise. You have to go above and beyond in order to create an experience that is sharable. Often times, this isn’t by accident. Plan for the unforgettable experience. Here are some ideas:
- Send a personal note via mail to the couple when they book you.
- Ship an 8×10 print of the engagement session to the parents of the bride and groom.
- Bring a small gift for the couple on the wedding day.
- Hand-deliver the wedding album to the couple’s house.
- Create and deliver branded products after the wedding day.
And these are just a few ideas that are pretty generic. If you can tie these things more closely to your specific brand, you will really be creating an experience for them to recommend.
With the many changes you make to your content, blog, social media, and relationships, you should also pay the same attention to your website. Your website represents your brand image and message. When potential clients hear about you and your work, they assume their expectations will be met when they visit your website. It is crucial for your wedding photography business to make sure your website is clear, concise, and helps them immediately decide to work with you.
21. Showcase WOW Images
As a wedding photographer, one of the first things featured on your website should be an image gallery. Your image galleries should feature your best images (WOW photos) from your past wedding shoots. These are carefully selected images that you chose to reflect the feel of the wedding shoot. These images speak to your next client and help you book higher-end weddings.
22. Create a Clear Pricing Page
When potential clients see prices on a website, it can be a bit overwhelming at first. It is important for you to have a simple and clear pricing page that tells them exactly what you offer and at what price. Remember, the #1 reason clients won’t book you is that of confusion. Ensure your photography packages are clear, and that it easily translates to anyone who views your website.
23. Develop a Unique Brand Message
In an industry full of photographers who have similar qualifications as you, how do you stand out? Your website is the perfect place to share your unique brand message. Add a few fun facts about you as a wedding photographer, as a business owner, and as a person. Find commonalities with your target market that helps you create a unique brand message that stands out from other photographers.
When the busy season comes to an end, you spend most of your time working on images for your clients. Post production is a huge pain point for wedding photographers. The more weddings you book each year, the more of your post production workflow needs your attention. This area of your wedding photography business is always something you can improve on to help your workflow speed increase, allowing you to book more clients.
24. Utilize Post Production Resources
Chances are you have spent hours on end stressing over completing and delivering thousands of images to your past clients. Outsourcing your images to a wedding photography post processing company, such as ShootDotEdit, can help you eliminate your post production workflow. This frees up your time and allows you to focus on other important parts of your business.
25. Send your Album Design to a Specialist
Creating an album can also be a headache to your post-wedding workflow. Outsourcing your album design cuts down on your workflow time, and allows you to work on other projects. Remember, the better experience your client has (even through album design), the more likely it will be that they will refer you down the road.
Systems are typically not a term that creatives want to focus on. While not all photographers feel that way, systems are often times technical and not very creative. But, systems and tools can save you hours every week, and allow you to get back to what you love.
Utilizing specialists for your post-wedding workflow is necessary to maintain success in your photography business. Beyond that, though, it is still necessary for you to create a cohesive workflow for your day-to-day tasks. Creating systems for every part of your workflow can help you stay on track, complete projects quickly, and take on more next year. Adding in workflow tools will make you faster and more accurate.
26. Use Workflow Tools
There are countless workflow tools that can help you as a wedding photographer. From wedding photography email templates to social media scheduling tools, such as Iconosquare and Hootsuite, to office management systems, such as Asanae, you can use tools to create a workflow that allows you to stay productive and on track at all times.
27. Hire Additional Help
The more your business grows, the more tasks that will pile up. If you are struggling with your current systems, you can hire someone to help you. Hiring help to take care of the day-to-day tasks that do not need your attention can help you focus on more important parts of your business.
Read Michael Gerber’s The E-Myth Revisited for a great example of how to hire our tasks for your business. He walks the reader through an eloquent story of the how and why behind hiring to grow your business. And, he cautions what could happen if you hire before you have good, defined systems.
Don’t think that you can do it all. You might be able to for a short period of time, but at some point, it will come back to bite you. When you are setting out to start your photography business, you might not be able to hire someone, and that’s ok. But don’t get stuck in this mindset as your business grows.
A good alternative to hiring help is to partner with companies that specialize in the tasks you need help in. ShootDotEdit is a great example of this. Rather than hiring and training and editor, ShootDotEdit can remove the burden of post production off of your plate for a flat, monthly fee. You don’t have to worry about purchasing expensive equipment and keeping up to date with the latest software. You don’t have to hire and fire or deal with payroll and unemployment taxes. You don’t have to worry when your hired help calls in sick or quits for a different job. And, ShootDotEdit is a specialist at post production. They will edit your images according to your style, and send them back to you as fast as 48 hours.
There are many examples of this in the wedding photography industry. In the end, when you partner with a specialist, you can focus on growing your photography business.
Bonus: Dial in your Contract
Don’t ignore your wedding photography contract. If you don’t have one, get a contract ASAP. And, if you do have a one, make sure it’s up to date. As your business grows, you have different needs. Your contract needs to be updated at least yearly, if not more frequently. While it isn’t the most fun, spend a few hours ensuring your photography contract is up to speed.
There is always something you can do to make improvements to your wedding photography business and increase the bookings you will receive next year. Download our How to Grow Your Wedding Photography Business Guide to discover 50+ pages of actionable tips and tricks you can apply now!