This is a guest blog written by Brooke Jefferson. Brooke is an Oklahoma family photographer, podcast host of the Book More Photography Clients Podcast, and business coach, who thrives on helping photographers book more clients through marketing their businesses on social media and building relationships with their local communities. Her focus is helping others maximize their potential by creating a profitable, sustainable, and most importantly, a fulfilling photography business. She’s built a 6-figure photography business that was born from a new found passion in 2014.
You more than likely became a photographer out of passion or an obsession with how it made you feel. One of the biggest misconceptions about running a photography business is that all it takes is a pricey camera and a set of skills to make it big. Let’s crush that myth right now. The one truth nobody told you was that it also takes some business skills and organization to manage a profitable and sustainable photography business.
The biggest reason I was able to leave my full-time teaching job and become a full-time photographer is because I prepared for it. If you want to have profitable months in your business, there are a series of steps you need to follow month after month.
The first step in preparing for your best month ever is to set your goals. The goals I set include an income goal, the number of sessions it will take me to hit that goal, how many recurring clients I want to see, how many new clients I want to see, and my goal for showing up on social media.
Your income goal is going to be very different from the photographer you admire. You are in different seasons of your business. Your income goal is determined by YOU. Do you have a goal you want to bring in per month? Write it down.
Next, how many sessions is it going to take you to get there? If you haven’t already run your business numbers based on your lifestyle, cost of doing business, and your market rates then use this formula and free training to figure that out before moving on to the next steps.
Once I know how many sessions it is going to take me to achieve my goals, I pull out my calendar and start circling dates that I am available to take those sessions. Then I add those dates to my Iris Works online booking calendar.
Depending on your niche, recurring clients may be a goal that you set for yourself. Serving a client one time is great, but having them come back is a huge compliment and a sign that you are doing things right! How many recurring clients do you want to see per month? Write it down.
One of the metrics you want to track as well would be new clients. Keep track of the amount of new clients that are coming into your business each month. As a bonus, keep track of where they are coming from. This will help you decide where to put your marketing efforts.
Now that you have your goals, it’s time to take action. In order to fill your calendar, you can’t be a sitting duck and just wait for clients to approach you. You must take action and put yourself out there. Start rating your marketing efforts from month to month on a scale of 1-10 and watch the relationship between your efforts and what actually happens in your business.
To get you started on marketing, choose ONE platform to go all in with for the next 30-60 days. This can be Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc. Choose the one you feel most comfortable with and where your target client is hanging out.
Rinse and repeat this process each month and evaluate how you did. “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” -Benjamin Franklin