Stop Wasting Time, Money and Energy in Your Business!

The Wormpit Technique for Photographer Efficiency

Leeann is a ShootQ Accredited Consultant or ACE. Contact her to schedule a custom ShootQ consultation!

It’s 2012, and a new year is here! A new year naturally brings changes, goals, and new adventures. Typically, as a business owner, the new year also brings a time to examine your business and asses how you can make changes – it’s a great time for improvement!

One way to approach change in the new year is to look at the way you do things in your business. Everything – from emailing to editing to shooting – is a process in your business, and every process inherently contains waste. There’s no getting around it – whether you are wasting time, money, or energy, there is always room for improvement.

Not sure where to start? Try using the WORMPIT technique to identify wasteful areas in your business.

W: Waiting. How can you reduce the amount of time spent waiting on images to …

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Lady Gaga, iHeartRadio and 9 Tips for Event Photography

iHeartRadio - Tips for Pro Photographers

This past September I had the privilege of photographing the iHeartRadio Music Festival at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.  Having shot music events of various sizes over the past few years, I quickly recognized that this wasn’t going to be a typical “concert” by any means. It was a 2-day event, packed with 10 “A list” artists each night, performing anywhere from 10 to 40 minutes each. Fast paced and on a large scale, I knew from the outset that in order to “capture” the event in a cohesive and artful way I’d have to draw from all facets of my shooting experience and documentary style. Given that I had virtually unrestricted access to run around the arena and get the shots I wanted, the challenge was on me to document and present the concert in a unique way and to deliver something different than the typical concert coverage. (Often you …

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Dazzle Your Clients in 2012

Leeann is a ShootQ Accredited Consultant or ACE. Contact her to schedule a custom ShootQ consultation!

It’s almost the new year, and booking season is right around the corner. New clients are knocking, and it’s our chance to dazzle them with the client experience.

In a world where word of mouth means everything, it’s no longer good enough as a growing business to just do an OK job. We need to “Wow!” our customers by exceeding their expectations.

This process of customer satisfaction can be illustrated in two distinct areas:

The Expected: Clients expect great pictures, prompt email or phone responses, and beautiful products with on-time delivery. They hire a professional to meet all of those expectations. For those who wish to charge peak prices, high prices come with high client demands. The expected area of customer satisfaction can be illustrated as “Duh!” or “Of course, that’s what I paid your for!”

The Excitement: Creating …

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6 Steps to Better UX Design

*Update: Congrats to Travis Gray for winning a copy of Lawrence’s new book “Social Media Marketing for Digital Photographers!”* Everything you do, wear, drive, eat, and so forth are expressions of your character. If it is you that makes you unique, then let’s talk about the storefront that’s open 24/7 — your website — and see how it’s applicable to other designs as well.

One cannot not communicate: Every behavior is a kind of communication. Because behavior does not have a counterpart (there is no anti-behavior), it is not possible not to communicate. – Paul Watzlawick

Since every behavior is a kind of communication, it would be sensible to first understand our target audience.

1. Project Usability

What is the goal of your viewers? What are they trying to find?

Be clear from the get-go (i.e., a banner that illustrates exactly what your website is supposed to offer).

Image courtesy of www.denisechandler.com

Other concerns might include …

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Word of Mouth Marketing for Photographers

Written by Binita Patel

A happy customer is the greatest endorsement any business could ask for. After all, happy customers are likely to say great things about your business, and people trust recommendations from the happy customers they know. Hearing a positive testimony from a friend or family could mean the difference between ‘maybe’ and ‘definitely’ for your next client.

So the big question is: How do we create happy customers who want to proactively endorse our business? Well, it all starts with the customers you already have. Remember, your current customers already know you, like you and trust you. So the key is to leverage these existing relationships to create a self-perpetuating cycle of positive word-of-mouth.

Let’s give them something to talk about. Creating word-of-mouth momentum means giving people a reason to talk about you, your products and your services. In today’s competitive environment, simply meeting your customers’ expectations isn’t enough for them to give you a glowing review. We need …

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Don’t Do It Alone: Build A Team

Photographer Peter Carlson

I have never run a business by myself and I can not image ever doing it. I recently led an open forum discussion with a group of photographers. The ongoing themes I heard were, “I’m overwhelmed. I’m having a hard time doing this without any help. Coming tonight was what I really needed as I need to get input from others.”

Hearing all of these comments reminded me we all need to work with a team at some level. If you had the chance to read my last post: Things to Know Before You Go with Associates, you have gotten a look at the associate photographer part of my team. Not only do I have three wonderful photographers, who are all employees, but my team extends to other employees, free-lance contractors, outsourcing companies, business advisors, and friends. Of course I also have my co-owner and wife, Whitney, who is the most …

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Digital vs. Physical

Written by Ed Monahan of Eastman Kodak

It’s no secret. Printing has substantially declined in recent years. With a glut of devices that take pictures – digital cameras, smart phones, iTouch and handheld video devices – consumers capture more images than ever before, while at the same time, print fewer. Rather than focus strictly on the numbers of prints being made (or in this case, not made), I try to understand the reasons behind the numbers – why do consumers increasingly opt out of printed images and more importantly, how do we bring them back?

In recent years, everyone, from high-end professional labs to online consumer services, has introduced some kind of photo book offering, Kodak included. Yet, with all of these offerings, we have yet to see movement toward widespread adoption, and purchase, of these premiums.

So first, let’s take a step back and think about what we do know. We know …

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Backup and Archiving Demystified Part 1

Raid 1 and Raid 5 ComparisonA Scary Tale of Loss and Tragedy

Imagine it is late one evening, a cold wind is howling outside your window and you have been chained to your computer, editing all day, feverishly working on customer images to meet a looming deadline. This might seem like the scary part of the story, but it’s not. You have worked on hundreds of images during the day and BAM! your drive fails. Insert scream of terror here, this is the scary part. If you are working on a single drive now the weeping, pounding on the table and wails of despair would begin. Eventually your tears would dry and you would be faced with the cold hard reality that you will need to restore the files from your backup. Which means those long hours spent working were for naught and those beautiful edits will have to be done all over again.  So you revert into a catatonic state until …

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SEO Basics Part 4: Places Pages and Local Search

Local search is kind of like venturing into quantum physics – the normal rules don’t apply! But you don’t have to be a scientist to understand it. In this webinar we’ll talk about how to clearly signal your location, and how to use citations and reviews to draw people to your photography business. Download the slides here.

To RSVP for upcoming webinars visit Craig’s Photo Life page.

Craig Cochrane is Pictage’s Executive Vice President of Marketing. Craig has a degree in Economics from Harvard University an MBA from USC, and has been focusing on online marketing since 2004. Prior to Pictage, Craig advised clients in various verticals about SEO while working at The Search Agency in Santa Monica, and has served as an in-house SEO for several other Internet companies.

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Let There Be Light: Part 1

Photographer Jared Platt

Join Jared Platt’s next free Lightroom Webinar from The Photo Life: Check the calendar and RSVP!

At PartnerCon in San Diego, California, I gave a lecture called “Let There Be Light.” This lecture was an academic, aesthetic and philosophical discussion on light, what it means and how we use it to communicate. This was my opening slideshow. Stay tuned for more installments from the lecture in the weeks to come.

A Quick Challenge

By the way, I chose the song on this slideshow with care. Pay close attention to the resolution at the end, there is a hidden treasure in this song that is not only interesting trivia, but is sheer brilliance on the part of the musician, Kevin Burdick. “In Too Deep” is a song about the hope of redemption from darkness, so if you have heard my lecture, you will understand why I chose it. But in the …

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