3 Ways to Keep Track of Contracts & Invoices Without Losing your Mind by The Photo Life

You didn’t get into photography so that you could manage paperwork.

But between all the invoicing and contracts that you manage for your various shoots, it’s easy to feel like you spend a majority of your day managing those tedious details! So how do you keep your desk and brain clear of the clutter from this pile of paperwork? Here are three tips for streamlining your workload, so you can get out from behind your desk, and back behind the camera.

I. Put everything online.

Contracts and invoices can all be done through online systems or services, making it quick and easy for your client to sign and return things to you. Plus, down the road, it’s easy to find all the contracts and invoices under each client’s online folder!

II. Automate as much as possible.

Invoices should be sent out automatically online through your studio management software. If clients pay by credit card, you …

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4 Tips for Creating Blog Content that Generates Qualified Traffic by Elizabeth Villa Ippolito

If you want to generate qualified leads, you’ve got to start driving qualified traffic to your website. After all, leads don’t just appear out of nowhere! (Although, that’d be nice.)

How do you generate qualified website traffic? You guessed it…by consistently publishing content on your blog!

To truly find success generating qualified traffic through blogging, it’s important to tailor content to your target market. This way, your blog articles are relevant, compelling AND come up in search engines when your target audience is searching.

1. Identify Specific Buyer Personas

The first step to creating content that generates qualified traffic is understanding what qualified means to you. What is the “right” traffic? Create buyer personas to help you identify the traits that the right visitors have that you want to attract.

As a photography business offering services to consumers, you must identify the specific person you want to sell to, as well as the people who are the decision-makers.

For example, …

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What are Professional Photographers Really Selling? by Kevin and Brittani Gardner

Let’s clear our minds for a minute.

Think about the things that influence us. Maybe it’s the lustrous elements from our daily routines that are full of inspiration and creativity? So many things sway our thoughts, right? Commercials convince us to call NOW and “GET ONE FREE!” The guy that dances on the corner with a $5 pizza sign beckons us to “come get the freshest, hottest pie in town!”

We see so many things in “lights” trying to sell us something – trying to get us to buy into something – but how many of those bright, sparkly things truly help us understand the products, services and benefits?

As photographers, we want clients to “buy in” to what we offer; everything from our brand’s luster to our products. When we offer photography services, people are excited about the photos. They view our blog, tag themselves, and share on social media. They right-click …

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Why Options Stink. by Jared Bauman

Options. We think we like them. We actually hate them.

There’s a hamburger chain out in my neck of the woods called In-N-Out. Many of you have probably heard of them, if not had a hamburger from there at one point. They have a bit of a cult following, with consistent lines out the door at all of their locations. They’re focused on fresh (never frozen) burgers that taste delicious.

To appeal to so many people, you’d think they’d have lots of options on their menu. Lots of people = lots of different wants and needs = lots of options. Wrong. In-N-Out has three options: a hamburger, a cheeseburger, and a double cheeseburger. That’s it.

I have a rant I do when I present on this topic, and it generally addresses an area where I see photographers offer WAY to many options: ALBUMS. Think about all of the CHOICES you give your client when …

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Make More Money with Event Cards

If you’re an event photographer, there’s no better opportunity to reach your target market than at an actual event. No matter what kind of event it is — a wedding, mitzvah or birthday party — most of your client’s guests are potential NEW clients for you! Traditionally, client communities consist of similar socioeconomic classes and aesthetic preferences. So, the guests at that event this weekend are prime examples of your target market! And if your client liked you enough to hire you, then many of their guests might too. Don’t pass up an opportunity to market directly to them.

Spread the word at the event – use event cards! Not only will you give them a take-away with your contact information, but you’ll also give them the keys to access the photos from the event.

Many companies, like Pictage, provide turnkey solutions for event cards. Or you can make them yourself. Here are …

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Harnessing The Power of Mobile Marketing With StickyAlbums by Wendy Roe

Ask yourself how many of your clients have smartphones, iPads or both?  Our answer was – A LOT! We’ve seen a steady increase in website traffic from mobile devices over the last two years and when I checked again today, it’s staggering that almost 20% of all our visitors were from mobile devices. That’s A LOT of people visiting us from mobile devices! Over 70% of them were on iPhones and iPads. So, that got my brain thinking about how our clients see and share their images digitally via mobile devices. As you’ll see in a personal story coming up, mobile albums improve word-of-mouth marketing like nothing else! Both of these experiences led me to seek out a company that specializes in mobile client albums – StickyAlbums.

What is StickyAlbums?

StickyAlbums let you create mobile photo albums – a branded mobile app – which your clients can save to their iPhones, …

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Splurging : Convincing Clients That You’re Worth It by Katelyn James

Why do we go to Starbucks when we could get the same coffee for $3 cheaper at 7Eleven? Some would say it’s because it’s BETTER coffee while others would argue that the coffee is the same, you’re just paying for the brand and the experience. It’s true, I feel sophisticated, modern and important in Starbucks and when I’m standing in line at 7Eleven, I’m just trying to get out of there as fast a possible!! We pay MORE for things that we value, things we feel connected to and things that give us warm fuzzy feelings inside. I don’t even drink coffee but I bought a Pumpkin Spiced Latte from Starbucks on the way home from a shoot last week just because it’s fall and that’s what you’re supposed to do in the fall!! Starbuck’s marketing is working. When I pay $5 for a tiny frap, I don’t feel like …

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3 Tips for Guiding Your Clients Through the Purchasing Process

Be a Shepherd, Not a Salesperson!

Now that you’ve carefully chosen holiday promotions that provide value to your clients and to your business, the sales process becomes less about convincing clients to purchase and more about guiding them toward products and services that are best for them. Your role is to help them make a decision – a decision that you know they won’t regret!

Here are three tips for guiding your clients through the purchasing process:

1. Keep it simple.

There’s a clear window of opportunity for holiday promotions, and any confusion that your clients feel will delay their decision-making during this short timeframe. Keeping the process simple empowers clients to make quick decisions, so make sure the ordering process is clear and easy. If there are too many steps involved in design decisions, image selection, or scheduling, your sales will be impacted negatively. As you evaluate your purchasing process, remove unnecessary steps …

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Price Objections: How to Deal by Matt Davis

Statements such as, “Your prices are out of my budget” and “It costs too much” are the number one reasons for stalled sales. Yep, I said stall, not obstruction or objection. How do most of us respond when we hear these things? We get angry or offended or, worst of all, we drop the price! If you go that route, it pretty much implies that you were charging too much to begin with. So not only are you left with a potential client who doesn’t trust you, you lost some of your profit margin.

But I digress.

Potential clients complain about prices all the time. Heck, we even do this from time to time as consumers. When you realize why you ask these same questions yourself, you can understand why you get them from your clients. As consumers, we want to be in control, but we also want to be nice. You …

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Show & Tell: How to Sell Boudoir Books by Kelly Segre

In-house sales work best with boudoir clients. But what does this mean? It means you have to find a way to show your client an album before they see their final prints.

Here are my tips and tricks for boosting book and album sales specifically for boudoir photographers!

1. Show and sell

Have particular products in mind for your boudoir clients? Great! Then, you must show them to sell them! When I shoot boudoir sessions, I have hair and make-up artists come to my studio, so clients see my books in front of them while they’re getting styled. They naturally want to look through the books. Initially, the client may be looking to see how other women have posed or what they’ve worn (or not worn!) in their sessions. But they always end up admiring the book! I have several sample books at my studio for my clients to experience. I only display books …

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