My biggest No-No's when photographing Personal Branding or Corporate Headshots

Biggest No-No's when photographing Personal Branding
 

My Biggest
No-No's when photographing Personal Branding or Corporate Headshots

A a couple months ago, I added my Personal Branding Photoshop Template to my online store.

The idea to create the template, came after I did an interview with Sue Bryce, and we spoke about how I market & sell corporate headshots  (a.k.a personal branding shoots).

This led me to writing today’s article - to share with you all the things I wish photographers knew before shooting corporate headshots/personal branding.

All the things I wasted a lot of time learning - the hard way!

Here we go...

1. You shouldn’t...
shoot before having a consultation

Because every client and every business is unique and needs to stand out from the competition, it's imperative you chat (in-person, or on the phone) with your personal branding clients before photographing them.

“Every day we are selling our most important asset: ourselves.” - Fredrick Eklund

Use your consultation time to do two important things: 

  1. Ask specific questions about your client, her business and where she wants to use her photos.

  2. Suggest new ideas of where she can use her photos (i.e social media, magazine features, etc)

Be sure to take notes and use those notes to plan out your photo shoot (see #5). (Having trouble making suggestions on new places where your client can use their photos? Check out the Photoshop Price-list Template for ideas).

SUMMARY:

Your consultation will:

  • tell you what your client wants

  • suggest new places/strategies your client can use her photos

  • help you collect information on how to approach her shoot

“The personal branding consultation is both a gathering of information and a creator used to fulfill your client’s photography needs and elevate her success.” - Heike Delmore

2. You shouldn’t...
consult with your client before doing your research

Similar to point number one, do your leg work before the consultation. 

Why you ask? Because it’s important you be specific and take a personal interest in your client.

With personal branding one size does not fit all. If you have a consultation before doing any initial research, you won’t be prepared and your suggestions, if any, will sound very generic. Show your client that you're taking an interest in them personally.

When researching your client you are looking for the following:

    1.    Is she currently using any personal branding photos?
    2.    If yes, where is she currently using her photos?
    3.    Where might she be looking to update them?
    4.    Where could she be using them - but is currently not?
    5.    Think of completely new strategies she could impliment

SUMMARY:

  • Gather as much information on where your client is currently using her photos and note where she could be using them in the future.

  • This information will prepare you for a finely tailored consult

3. You shouldn’t...  
have an inconsistent price-list

What's an inconsistent price-list? 

An inconsistent price-list is a price-list where the same product is priced differently across different genres.

Let’s say you sell 7x10s. And you price a 7x10 for family portraits higher than a 7x10 for corporate headshots. Why are they priced differently? Is one 7x10 better than the other? 

This is why consistency is important: let me tell you a story where this became a big problem for me. 

When I started out in this genre, I was charging really low prices for my corporate headshots. Lower than my glamour portraits. I told myself I was getting clients in the door. The problem arose when my headshot clients would bring in a couple of gowns to shoot at the end of the session... "just for fun". The photos with the gowns would usually qualify as a portrait or glamour photo. When the client came in to select and purchase their photos, it seemed ridiculous to charge one amount for the corporate headshots and another for the glammed up photos. Having a consistent price-list across the board solved this problem.

SUMMARY:

  • Using a consistent price-list will streamline your business

  • Repeat clients will not longer be confused (and you’ll feel clearer - trust me)

  • Now, I’m not saying have 1 generic pricing brochure for all genres. No! Absolutely design them differently target each market you shoot. But keep your pricing the same.

4. You shouldn’t...  
shoot personal branding without a checklist

What kind of checklist you ask? 

If you’ve you’ve done your pre-consultation research and had your in-person or telephone consultation, you can easily put together a shooting checklist.

Your checklist should consist of:

  1. Shots your client says they want or need

  2. It should also indicate the photographic style

  3. Where your client plans on using the images

  4. Where your client may try using their photos in the future based on your suggestions.

For example, if you client is going to open a Facebook business page, you check off vertical/square profile image and horizontal image for the cover image. And shoot to fulfill those requirements. 

SUMMARY:

  • Your checklist will act as a photo shoot planner.

5. You shouldn’t...  
shoot to fit IN

Many of us were taught that to be in business we nee to fit a certain look or mold. 

When shooting personal branding photos, I suggest getting a few safe photos at the beginning. 

But be sure to branch out and capture your client’s authentic self. From your pre-consultation to your in-person or telephone consultation, you should have a good idea who your client is and what they’re trying to express to the world. 

Aim to capture all of this your shoot.

“You are your brand. Failure to share yourself in an open, honest way is a costly miscalculation. Who doesn’t want to be around someone who’s comfy in their own skin? On the contrary, who likes hanging around phonies?... Who were you as a carefree six year old, before the world taught you to play it safe and blend in with everyone else? Find yourself; be yourself; sell yourself.”
- Fredrik Eklund

SUMMARY:

  • When shooting personal branding start with a few safe photos

  • Then branch out and get creative to capture your client’s true self.

I hope you found this helpful. Leave me a comment below.

With love and gratitude and wishing you all the happiness and success,

 

 

P.S. If you know someone who will find this article helpful go ahead and share it with them!

Are you thinking about incorporating WEDDING photography into your studio? And you're interested in how you can easily build a profitable wedding photography business. Check out the coming soon: E-Course: For those with a creative background not a business background - how to easily create a successful and profitable wedding photography business.


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5 Ways to make clients feel more comfortable

5-ways-make-clients-comfortable-photo-shoot-heike-delmore

Understandably, people are usually feeling pretty nervous, vulnerable or anxious before a photo shoot. And I can totally relate! However after the photo shoot, my clients often tell me that it was easier than they had anticipated. Mainly because I made them feel comfortable!

To get that special connection in your photos - in the eyes and body language of your client - these are 5 things I do with my clients to make them feel more comfortable during their photo shoot.  Remember to always smile + listen when using any of these 5 methods:

 

1. MAKING A NEW FRIEND

When a client is booking her photo shoot, be sure to ask her a lot of questions about herself.

It’s like making a new friend! Asking questions helps me get to know my client’s personality and also what she likes in terms of style and imagery. It gives us something to talk about. And finding any similarities between us, helps the conversation flow easily on the day of the photo shoot.

 

2.  PROCESS

Just before the photo shoot begins, I warn my client that I will most likely be talking throughout the entire session - often gently repeating myself with posing and coaching instructions.

By informing my client of my process ahead of time, she never feels discouraged or like she is doing something wrong. She interprets my repetitious instructing as encouragement rather than criticism.

 

3. TELL A STORY TO SET THE SCENE

Tell a story to get your client into the right mindset or character.

Sometimes if can’t get my client to give me the connection or body language I am looking for, I tell her a story to get her into character. With couples for example, I may say “you both just snuck out of a formal dinner party and met up in this secluded area to share a private moment”. Or with a couture portrait client, I may tell her to picture herself as a celebrity she likes and ask her to show me how that celebrity would portray this look.  This works wonders!

 

4. SHARE PERSONAL EXPERIENCE

Share your own experience of being photographed focusing on how you felt during the process.

I often share my personal experience of being in front of the camera and how nervous and vulnerable I felt. Let your client know that you can relate to how she is feeling. And how the poses may feel really awkward, they actually look good in camera. This will help reduce your client’s stress and you will see her shoulders relax.

 

5. SHOW POSITIVE EMOTIONS

When a shot looks great don’t be afraid to show your excitement!

During the photo shoot when a pose or shot looks great, I can’t help but get excited and let out a little squeal! This always gives the client an extra boost of confidence and reinforces that she is doing a great job! She will also inject more effort and enthusiasm in her next poses.

I hope you found these tips helpful! I’d love to hear any tips you have on making your clients feel more comfortable in front of the camera.

Thanks for reading! Leave your comments below!

With much gratitude,

 

 

 

 
 
 

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How to blog to keep yourself fully booked

easy-how-to-get-fully-booked-heike-delmore

Spring is already here for those who live further south. Last week I had the opportunity to visit Nashville, TN. With the family in tow, and camera in hand, it was a fabulous trip. I think I even got a bit of a tan! See my Instagram feed for pics from the trip.

While on my trip I got to meet an awesome stylist, Krista Roser, who styles many of the young country stars. And I got to hear how others are using their social media accounts to generate income.

All of which got me thinking about how I've used blogging + social media to keep my calendar fully booked. (I outline the super simple steps below).

I've never needed to invest in any advertising or do any shows/expos. Truth be told, I've invested in advertising twice. Approximately $1000 each time. Once was for a listing on a local wedding website. And the other was on a national magazine's website. The latter got me 3 out-of-town jobs. 

Not bad I suppose, I made the money back - but blogging is what has kept me consistently fully booked with shoots. Best of all it's free. And here's how...

I don't search for ideas or try to brainstorm new ideas of what to blog about.

I blog about my clients.

I use the photos I have created and sold to my client for the core of the post. Then I add a little story around those photos.

I call this method C.B.B. - or Client Based Blogging. Sounds simple right? Here's what it does...

Client Based Blogging (C.B.B.)


    1.    It makes my current clients happy
    2.    It attracts new clients


Here's why the "Client Based Blogging" method works...

CURRENT CLIENTS FEEL SPECIAL

It makes your current clients happy. The blog post makes them feel special. Heck, I feel special if my work gets featured anywhere! Your clients feel the same when they are featured on yours. 

Often clients are more excited about their photos being posted online, than they are about receiving their albums or digital files. They're excited because they want to share and show them off.

So having a well curated blog post + a story shows your client in their best light.

ATTRACTING NEW CLIENTS

Now onto the psychology of how blogging about your current client actually attracts new clients. 

  1. Suspicious - according to socialmedia.com "buyers are naturally suspicious". If they see someone they know has purchased from you, they become more trusting of your product and services.

  2. Best choice - other times buyers don't have time to shop around. They assume those before them have already done the research and selected the best choice. According to research conducted by Forbes magazine, "we copy people we know because we’re simply uncertain about the best choice".

  3. Fitting in - according to Psychology Today magazine, sometimes clients purchase from the same company to "imitate others and fit in".

  4. Success Stories - if your work has aided in your client's success - success stories have an immense impact on consumers, according to socialmedia.com.

Now that we know how and why it works - how do we get people to our blogs?

PROCESS: HOW TO GET PEOPLE TO YOUR BLOG

All roads lead back to your blog - and timing is of the essence.

  • When to create the blog post - create your client's blog post before releasing any digital images. Here's the process: you've completed the photography job for your client and he/she has paid you. You are ready to deliver the photos. Before you do, put together their blog post and send them the link. This ensures your client will share the link with their friends and family (not the other products you give them).

  • Announce on Social Media - announce on any and all of your social media platforms (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter etc.) that you have a new blog post up on your site. Be sure to include the blog post link and post a photo to peak interest.

  • Email your client - email the blog link and social media posts to your client. Encourage them to tag themselves and share the post on social media.

PROCESS - TWO steps HOW TO WRITE a C.B.B. POST

Still not sure how to make a "Client Based Blog" post? Use these two easy steps to help you:

  1. Use photos your client has selected and purchased

  2. Accompany those photos with a story about your client. Try to write a minimum of 3 sentences. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • What... are they using the photos for? (tells both about them and the service you offer)

  • Who... is your client? (promote/plug their business or tell their story)

  • How... did the photos impact their life? (e.g. client got first modelling job)

  • When... did it happen? (is the timing of their photos important or is age?)

  • Where... did it take place? (is significance in the location?)

  • Why...? (why did they need these photographs)

ACTION STEPS


A. Create a blog post about your last client using the Client Based Blogging method (C.B.B.)
B. Use the photos they purchased
C. Write a minimum of 3 sentences about the client
D. Post the link to your blog post and teaser images on your social media accounts
E. Send your client the link to their post
F. When you are done go to my website and leave me a comment

ASIDE - I know you do this already, but I want to remind you to have your clients sign a model release before posting any of their images online.
TIP - I also let my clients know ahead of time that I'll be writing a special post about them on my blog. This gets them excited. Or, if they are super private people, they have to chance to let me know that they are uncomfortable.


With love and gratitude and wishing you all the happiness and success,

 
 

P.S. If you know someone who will find this article helpful go ahead and share it with them!

If you'd like to take these concepts further and dive in deeper on how you can easily build a profitable wedding photography business, check out the E-Course: For those with a creative background not a business background - how to easily create a successful and profitable wedding photography business.


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How to Attract Ideal Clients

How to attract ideal photography clients

Are we unknowingly diluting our brands?

In a world where websites are often the first touch point our clients have to us - are we dressing our sites for the job we want or the job we have?

When we dilute our websites we automatically attract the WRONG clients and repel the RIGHT clients.

Let me elaborate with a story before we get to the action steps. 

SANDRA

Sandra, a fellow photographer, recently told me she couldn’t get any clients... and the few clients she did get purchased very little. She went on to tell me how she went to networking meetings, had a booth at a show and invested in paid advertising. And the result - a negative bank balance.

So what was going wrong?

Now, there could be several things wrong, but I started with her website because this is where our potential client's start. 

The design was nice, but when the homepage photos ran through the auto gallery, I noticed two major problems:

The first was, Sandra is a fine art wedding photographer. Her homepage displayed 2 fine art wedding images, and then, a baby photo set in an outdoor park. (Insert record scratch sound effect). The style clash stood out like a sore thumb. 

I asked Sandra if she does baby photography.

Her answer, “I don’t want to.... but it pays”.

The second problem was, sprinkled throughout were unpolished, amateurish photos. These photos were not consistent with the quality of her best work.

I asked Sandra about the unpolished photos.

Her answers, “I don’t remember what photos are in the homepage gallery”. Then, “Even though those photos aren’t my best work, they show that I have experience…” 

MORAL OF THE STORY

    •    ATTRACT: What you show on your website you will attract. If you put baby photos, you will get requests for baby shoots. If you don’t like shooting XYZ… don’t post XYZ photos.  If you’re shooting a genre and your heart isn’t in it, that will show in your work and in your sales (or lack thereof).

    •    FLOW: Make sure there is a flow to the style of the photos you post. Don’t be all over the board or clients won’t be sure what they’ll get if they book you. If you have different styles, transition to them slowly in your gallery so you don’t throw visitors for a loop.

    •    A+: Only show your best work! Edit your website and remove any photos you dislike or you think are just “ok”. If they don’t score an A+ take them down. If a potential client comes to your website and sees 2 great photos and 1-2 mediocre ones they won’t be confident in your abilities. And they won’t contact/book you. Don’t give them a reason to hesitate.

    •    FOCUS: Potential clients don’t care if you’ve been a photographer for 10 years or 10 minutes. If you can make them look good or fulfill their needs they will contact you.

ACTION STEPS

  1. Remove the photos from your website of work you’d rather not do in the future. Only post photos of what you want to shoot more of.

  2. Post only your A+ images and delete the others. Don’t dilute your best work with your less-than-best work.

Remember, clients come to your website because they want to book you! They are hoping you are a good fit for them. It's okay to repel the wrong clients. But don't repel the right ones!

I’d love to hear from you. Have you found you're diluting your website in other ways? Share with us in the comment section (way down) below.

With love and gratitude. And wishing you all the success in your photography business,

 

P.S. Share this article it you found it helpful.

P.S.S. After writing this, I realized I have one super cute baby photo (that I am so proud of) on my website. I don’t shoot babies but sometimes get requests. Lightblub: I think it’s time to take it down!

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Animoto Video - Yay or Nay?

Animoto Photography business making video marketing Animoto

So I did it! I took the plunge signed up for Animoto and created a video!

Now I’ve heard people in the photography industry singing the praises of Animoto for a while. Namely the super talented Sue Bryce! And I must admit, my initial reaction was how great can it really be? I mean I use a Mac.... and iMovie is simple enough.  

I’ve also tried Photodex Proshow Web. Could this really be any better? - I said to myself.

Well, at the end of this article I’ll tell you the reasons why I think Animoto is a better tool - for my needs - and they probably aren’t for the reasons you think!

I’ll also touch on some different ways you can use video for your wedding, family or glamour photography businesses!

Why

But first let’s start off with why video is even important to your photography business!

These are some interesting and rather compelling statistics in my opinion. The article “The Science of Video Engagement” found that:

  • 60% of web site visitors will watch a video if one is available before reading any text

  • 88% of visitors stay longer on a site where there is a prominent video

  • homepages or landing pages that have a prominent video lead to 800% more conversions

  • website visitors have a higher likelihood of remembering videos compared to other forms of information

  • visitors who watch videos tend to look deeper into your product/brand and later purchase from you.

So video is pretty important. But how can we use it in our photography business?

How to use video

I’ve put together a list of some fun and easy ways I’ve seen and heard of video being used - and ways you can use it too: 

  • show behind the scenes at a wedding or in studio

  • interview

  • show your studio and office

  • client testimonials

  • image galleries

  • surprise client with their images put to music

  • showcase final images mixed with behind the scenes video/images

  • family shoot: interviewing the kids mixed with final images from the shoot

  • business commercial

  • brand story with images and your voice-over

  • showcase products e.g. wedding albums, folio boxes

  • up-sell packages

That’s all great, but where can you use these videos? Uhm… just about everywhere! And the best part is you can easily re-purpose your videos. Think - homepage, blog post, Facebook, Instagram and other social media.

My Animoto experience

I wanted to surprise one of my beautiful portraiture clients with something extra thoughtful. 

My typical portraiture blog posts prior to this, I’m sad to admit, were 1-2 images from a photo shoot that I would post here and there if I found time. 

This time I wanted to say more. This time I wanted to show more. And I wanted to say more without words and without just throwing a bunch of photos up consecutively one after another.

So I logged into my Animoto account and I picked a theme that I thought would be fitting with the style of photos I wanted to showcase. 

Tip: when viewing the themes, try to look past the default placeholder images - your photo genre may give the theme a completely different vibe.

Next I uploaded my photos, added my logo, a few lines of text, picked some music from their suggested royalty free music library and voila - I published my video! (Big Smile)

Animoto, automatically timed my video to the music, transitioned between the different slides and gave me straightforward options to export/publish my video.

Since you can control the time of the video, (if you’d like), you can also make shorter complimentary videos to use on Instagram. 

Tip: Instagram cuts videos off at 15 seconds.

So in addition, I made a shorter 15 second version of the video to match the look & feel of the original video.

Then, with the touch of a button, I exported the videos to my youtube and vimeo accounts and also downloaded them to my computer.

And the very best part... my video looked ultra professional! All shiny and polished!

Why I love Animoto

iMovie and other online video programs can do the same thing right?

Yes for some features, but these are the reasons why I prefer Animoto to other software I have tried:

  • it’s a super simple process

  • it saves me time! I’m a photographer and I don’t have time to fiddle around with video software.

  • it’s drag and drop

  • it’s really fast and slick

  • it’s online

  • you can import photos from smugmug

  • if you dislike the theme you can easily switch it without re-starting your project from scratch

  • it makes exporting easy

  • it exports quickly

  • all of your videos are in one place

  • it connects to your vimeo and youtube accounts

  • it easily embeds video into your website

  • you can upload both videos and still images

  • you can clip your videos in animoto

  • you can upload voice-overs

  • it has a huge library of royalty free music (hola!)

  • it has a blank template that you customize for projects that don’t fit with any of their other themes.

If you’ve been considering using video for any aspect of your photography business, I hope this article has been useful! I’d love to hear about your experiences!

Also, if you want to explore more about how to use animoto to boost your business check out Sue Bryce's super Creative Live course here!

Be sure to leave me a comment below.

P.S. Here is my video

With love and gratitude. And wishing you all the success in photography business,

 
 

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One of the biggest mistakes when designing your logo

Logo design mistakes photographers make Heike Delmore Education

What is one of the biggest mistakes a photographer can make when designing her logo?

Realizing it doesn’t work where she needs it most.

So you’ve designed a logo and it looks great… on your website. You envision it on your business cards, note cards and bags and it will look great there too.

Wonderful!

But now, as you are sitting down ready to blog a recent photo shoot, you contemplate, "should I add my logo as a watermark to my photos?"

You test it out… YIKES!

It looks distracting and actually takes away from the beauty of the image.

You decide to leave your image naked… watermark free.

Your rationale? "Well thieves will remove watermarks from images anyway - so why bother."

Here are few reasons why you should bother

Watermarking your images with your logo is free advertising. And who doesn’t have time for free advertising and marketing? Holla!

(Now before I go any further, I should mention that I too did not consider all of these items initially… it's been a live and learn experience. And one of my logos still suffers from this problem. But more on that and possible workarounds later in this article).

Consider the following:

  • Stealing: not everyone who will use your image(s) is trying to steal it or claim it as their own. For example, a very successful photographer friend of mine found one of her images displayed on a website accompanied by a short paragraph listing the site's favourite photographers. She was one of their favourites. They used an image from her website that was not watermarked. In a mad scramble, my photog friend contacted the site’s owner and sent her a watermarked version of the image. Capitalizing on the free exposure! (*Although people should always ask before using your work, the reality is they don’t always do this).

 
  • Branding: Why do people purchase bags covered with the brand’s logo? - think Louis Vuitton. I had the pleasure of hanging out with Christa Meola and handful of other talented photographers last summer. Christa did us the honour of taking our photos. As she was telling us about when she would get us our photos, one lady asked if she could have hers with the Meola logo on it. Why? Because it means something to her. Just as the LV logo means something to the woman carrying the monogramed Louis Vuitton purse. Make your logo mean something! 
    (See Christa's awesome logo on my Pinterest board below). 

Christa Meola and I in NYC last summer. I had the best time with this amazing talented lady.

Christa Meola and I in NYC last summer. I had the best time with this amazing talented lady.

 
  • Searches by Google Images: these days clients are searching for photographers on google images. Naturally, when shopping for a photographer you want to see their photos right? Make it easy for them! For example, if a client does an image search and a few photos in the results appeal to her -- help her see that those photos are all by the same photographer (you) because they all share the same logo. This will instantly help narrow down her search... to you!

 

  • Pinterest: ahhh gotta love Pinterest. Style boards, wedding, boards, headshot boards, boudoir boards, glamour boards. If one of your images ends up here, you want people to be able to find you. "But Pinterest will link back to my website - right?" Not all the time. For example, if someone pins your image via Google images, it will not link back to your site. And with no logo on your image, there is probably no tracing it back to you. (Unless of course, you are a well known photographer with a very distinctive style, such as, Sue Bryce, Craig Lamere or Annie Liebovitz).

 

  • Painters:  I thought I’d throw this in… traditionally artists have put their signatures on their work. Think paintings and prints.

 

But I already have a logo and it doesn’t look good on my photos

Trust me you are not alone.

I have two brands 1. Delmore Photography and 2. Couture Portrait. I wrestle with this problem with my Delmore Photography brand. The logo has a symbol with text below it. It’s too chunky to put on any image... without ruining it. Don’t get me wrong, I like it on its own… just not on my photos. To make things worse, this is the brand I use mainly for weddings… and the thought of putting that logo on every image in a long wedding blog post makes me cringe.

I did better, with my second and newer logo for Couture Portrait. I’d throw that logo on anything ;-) And will be updating my redesigned website soon. 

 

WORKAROUNDS

These are some workarounds if you already have a logo but it’s too distracting to put on your images. Use these tips alone or in combination. And be creative there is no right and wrong.

  1. URL: add your URL in a visually appealing and non-distracting way on your photos

  2. Creative URL: do something creative with your url - see ribbon example on my Pinterest board below.

  3. Font: Have a specific font in your logo? Use that font and write your URL on your photos.

  4. Distinctive: Is there a distinctive aspect of your logo that you could use, that would instantly identify it as part of your brand?

  5. Photoshop layer opacities: Set Photoshop's layer opacity to "multiply" to help blend the logo into the image.

Need visuals of these workarounds in action?

Here is my Pinterest board with examples of worksarounds  -- and examples of well designed logos that look great on photos:

 
My Pinterest board with examples of well designed logos that look great on photos and real world workaround options.

My Pinterest board with examples of well designed logos that look great on photos and real world workaround options.

 

Final Note:

Although filenames and meta data can help link an image back to you, the general public may not know how to look for these things. Or it may simply be too time consuming.

Also disabling the right click option on your website will not always prevent the Pinterest "Pin it" button from pinning your images.

Keep everything simple, easy and straightforward for a path of least resistance.

Let social media spread the word about your images - so be sure to have your name on them!

Leave a comment below, I'd love to start a conversation on the topic!

With love and gratitude. And wishing you all the success in photography business,

heike delmore photography mentor
 

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Don't say the M~word

2 minute money formula for photographers who hate to talk about money. Set your yearly goals and achieve them. Download  FREE PDF version .

2 minute money formula for photographers who hate to talk about money. Set your yearly goals and achieve them. Download FREE PDF version.

 

Happy New Year!

If you are like me, you are feeling so grateful...but you are completely exhausted from the holiday season.

It was a festivity whirlwind of visiting with friends and family. We chalked up over 820 km on the road in just under 7 days.

During this time, I uploaded something special to help you to start off the year on the right foot!

It’s a 2 minute formula that will help give you a clear plan for 2015!

It's called “Don't say the M-word”.

Specifically, it’s an information download for photographers who hate to talk about money.

As a bonus, I share the awesome results I had when I applied the formula in my business.

And I back it up with why-and-how it works based on a simple Harvard study!

For more information or to get the PDF version now - you can download it for FREE here.

Wishing you all the love, success and happiness in the new year!

P.S.

After you download the "Don’t say the M-Word: 2 minute money formula for photographers who hate to talk about money", leave me a note in the comments section.

I’d love to hear how you have applied this before or how you plan on implementing now. All the best for 2015!

If you know someone who could benefit from this article please share it.

With love and gratitude,

heikedelmore
 
 

Heike,
Thank you from the bottom of my heart. You just rocked our world in a short 2 minutes or less.

I know that you posted the Free Download for Don’t Say the M-Word 9 months ago, but I couldn’t have been happier to find it today.

My mom and I have a photography business and have been struggling to make our business run SUCCESSFULLY while working our day jobs.

I saw your post in IBWS about creating a market about Sweet 16 and fell in love with the photo. So I started researching your other sites (Facebook, website, pinterest) and came across the download for this PDF.

We have been having such a struggle with pricing and products and believing in our pricing, and believing in our products.... and I know this isn’t the end all be all answer... but it is the most motivation I have felt in quite some time.
I instantly did the formula for myself.. then did again times 2 since my mom and I are partners in the business and then went straight to re evaluating our Pricing PDF, our product list, our collections, everything!

Thank you so so much for this Free Download— It is going to change our business... I am sure of it!”
— Addie and Chelsie Photo { www.addieandchelsiephoto.com }

P.S.S

You may be wondering how I found the time to put this together during such a busy season.

Well, I found this little gem of an app. It’s a free smartphone app called “dragon dictation” and it’s awesome.

You tap and talk. The app translates your voice into text. You then have the option to save or email your notes!

I’ll never forget an idea ever again.

Update: Google Docs and Mac computers have this ability voice dictate also.

 

CONTINUE TO:

- Favourite free font and branding resources
- 7 steps to creating business buzz & momentum
- Don't say the M-word: For photogs who hate to talk money
- 5 ways to make clients comfortable during a shoot
About Heike


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Wedding photography business questions answered

photography-expert-question-answer

I will be holding a free webinar on Monday, October 6th to answer your most pressing business questions focusing heavily on wedding photography. Send me your questions by September 29, 2014!

Replay January 6, 2015 @ 1PM

What is your biggest question? People ask me all the time how I got started and how I managed to book myself solid with my “ideal” photography clients.

It’s a great question, because I can remember when I first started out and I was “trying” to build a profitable photography business, I always found myself competing on price - instead of style or service. Although, charging low prices allowed me to build my portfolio and hone my photography skills, I found myself working all hours of the day/night.

I was on the verge of a burnout and I definitely didn’t have a happy balance of work and family life.

Slowly, I educated myself from leaders in the photography business. I combined different strategies from many mentors and steered my business in a whole new direction.  Then one day, I turned around, and people were asking me the same question? How can I be profitable in this over saturated market of wedding photographers?

Recently I was honoured, humbled and excited to be chosen as one the mentors for the modern women’s portraiture group (with 17,000+ members) formed by the amazing Sue Bryce Photographer -- and as an extension from that group, I started the IBWS Wedding and Bridal Group.

I know we all struggle with different areas of running the business.

So I will be holding a webinar to answer your most pressing sales questions focusing heavily on wedding photography.

Any these sound familiar:

  • you only sell your lowest package

  • you feel bad charging full price in this economy

  • you have inquires but you are having trouble closing the sale

  • you feel nervous when a client calls you

  • you are struggling with setting your prices

  • you know your photography work is as good or better than your competitors but you are afraid to charge more

  • you fear losing clients to cheaper competitors

  • you just want to be a photographer not a salesperson

  • you hate feeling 'salesy'

  • you are not sure when to give the client your price list

  • you feel desperate for a sales

  • you feel you need to charge less due to poor state of the economy

  • you feel nervous talking about your pricing

What I need you to do is send me your biggest most pressing sales process questions! Anything from how to handle inquires, email responses, price list/packages, meetings and bookings. (No question is too simple, silly or stupid - no photography business snobs here).

Where in the sales process are you getting stuck?

I just wanted to thank you again for opening my eyes to the world of photography. I had gotten laid off last year completely unexpectedly and photography carried me through and gave me a purpose during this period. I owe this all to you and everything you shared with me. I will always be so grateful to you for being so open and sharing all your knowledge with me. You truly are and absolute pro and a real talent. Just wanted to thank you again and let you know how much it has meant to me.
— Jennifer White | www.photographybywhite.com

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Hi Heike! I went into my wedding consultation on Wednesday with you in the back of my head the whole time! They booked within 24hrs of the meeting. It was was my fastest response yet after a consult! Thank you, thank you!! Really Heike, thank you soooo much!
— Lee-Anne Jarrett | www.leeannejarrettphotography.com
Photography Expert Heike Delmore answers your sales questions

How my competitors increased my sales

how to use your competition to increase your sales

You have probably heard this too – the photographer friend complaining their competitor is copying their style, stealing their clients, using the same presets … and charging way less!

It is easy to slip into this negative way of thinking.

“If you look at things in a new way – things will actually be different”

When I started my photography business, I was living in a new city and didn’t have many contacts. So I reached out to other local photographers, who I felt had a similar style (and coolness factor lol).

I emailed them, introduced myself, complimented their work and asked if they would be interested in starting a referral network.

It worked like this: If I was unable to photograph a certain client (see below for list of possible reasons), I would refer that client to the other photographer. And the other photographer would do the same for me.

I reached out to first 2 then later 3 other photographers and they all said YES!

Since starting this referral network, my annual sales increased by approximately 20%.

“You must never think for a moment that the supply is limited….
Never get afraid that you will lose what you want because some other person “beats you to it”. That cannot possibly happen; you are not seeking anything that is possessed by anybody else”
– Wallace D. Wattles

The more you give the more you will receive.

Have you used your competition to advance your business? We would love to know how! Take a second and leave us a comment on this article.

REASONS TO REFER CLIENTS TO OTHER PHOTOGRAPHERS:

  1. you are already booked on that date (i.e. weddings, events, holiday sessions, too busy)

  2. you don’t do that type of photography (i.e. newborns, real estate)

  3. you feel the client would be better suited to a different photographer (i.e. personality clash, wrong style)

ADVANTAGES:

  1. your competitor’s marketing efforts give you clients

  2. your reputation and visibility is increased when other reputable photographers recommend you

  3. you make new friends (and you never know when you might need help i.e. you are sick and cannot show up for a scheduled photoshoot).

If you found this article helpful, please share it or leave a comment! If you know someone who could benefit from this article please share it. I'd love to hear from you!

Until next month with much love and gratitude,

heike delmore photography business mentor
 

CONTINUE TO:

- 5 Ways to make clients feel more comfortable
- Don't say the M-word: For photogs who hate to talk money
- Video: Make-up Highlight & Contour Photoshop
About Heike
- Free Stuff

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7 free steps to creating buzz & momentum

7 steps to creating buzz in your photography business

I used this social media technique when I moved to a new city and started my photography business.It was super easy and it impacted my business immensely! It is one of the best ways to get people talking, spreading the word and taking action.

Do you ever start thinking to yourself, “What the heck am I doing? Is all this hustle worth it? How can I get more exposure for my business?”

Here’s the scenario – You built your website, but you wish more people were booking. And worse, you fear many of your ideal clients will never know you exist! Insecure thoughts start to race through your head… you think it must be because…

  • my prices must be too high

  • I don’t have enough experience

  • my work isn’t good enough

  • my website sucks

  • nobody likes me

What’s wrong and why aren’t people booking? Chances are none of those insecure thoughts are true! What’s really going on has NOTHING to do with your prices, talent, or like-ability. It’s more likely that your audience simply:

  • does not know about your website

  • has not heard of you

  • is not talking about you

  • or does not know you started a photography business

CREATE A CONTEST 

Why do contests create a buzz? Social media is about social sharing. When one person’s friends or followers see they have entered the contest, they will likely do so also, then their friends will see and do the same, and the domino effect continues…

7 STEPS TO EASILY SET UP YOUR CONTEST

It should go without saying , but your photography business should have a separate Facebook page from your personal page. If you don’t have this do make one now.

  1. Decide on the prize. Keep in mind the better the prize, the more likely people will talk about it. And the more likely people will participate and give you their contact information. Also, consider teaming up with other complementary vendors who will also donate prizes for extra exposure. For example, you give away a photo shoot, a spa donates a treatment, and salon donates some hair products.

  2. Make the rules. For example, if you are running your contest on Twitter, have entrants “retweet”, “@mention+ explain why they should win” and use “hashtags”.

  3. Get friends/family involved. One way to do this would be to allow friends and family to support others to who entered by, for example on Facebook “liking”, “sharing” and leaving a “comment” as to why their friend deserves to win. Or on Twitter to “retweet”, “@mention explain why they should win” and/or use “hashtags”.

  4. Collect email addresses. Direct entrants to your website form to submit their email address. Since, we don’t know when Facebook or any other social media platform will change it’s rules or become obsolete – the best way to continually market to your potential customers is directly into their inboxes.

  5. Set a draw date. Be sure to let entrants know when the contest will be over and a winner selected. Nothing gets people moving like a deadline!

  6. Post your contest. Now create an image or graphic to represent your contest. Post it on Facebook, for example, and add the rules and draw date information.

  7. Spread the word. Share your contest post on your business page and personal page. Ask the other vendors who submitted prizes to also show your contest post on their Facebook’s pages, websites etc. Don’t be afraid to comment everyday on the status of the contest, for example, “only 2 more days until the winner is drawn”! Think of other clever places to mention your contest.

THE OUTCOME

✓ increased sales
✓ increased brand awareness
✓ increased referrals
✓ increased popularity
✓ increased newsletter subscribers
✓ increased social media followers
✓ increased visitors to your website

 

P.S. Before running a contest on any social media platform be sure to check their contest guidelines.

Good luck creating a buzz around your photography business!

Please add your best tips and ideas directly in the comments above!

Thank you, as always, for reading and sharing. You made my day!

 

CONTINUE TO:

- 5 Ways to make clients feel more comfortable
- How I used my competitors to increase my sales
About Heike
- Free Stuff

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& sales tips right to your inbox.

 

Free fonts and branding resources

heikedelmore-fav-free-font-branding-resources

 

MY SECRET SAUCE

In addition to stunning photography, presenting a professional brand to the public is paramount in reinforcing your value, gaining trust and attracting your ideal client! I receive a lot of questions about my branding and my use of typography. And although I am not going to reveal my fonts - I consider them to be a part of my secret branding sauce - I am going to reveal some excellent free resources where you can find high quality editorial style fonts. Did I say free? Yes, I said free!

MIND YOUR PS AND QS

Please be sure to read any licensing restrictions before using a font for your business. Some fonts allow only for personal use - so be sure to read the fine print.

USING YOUR FONT ON YOUR WEBSITE 

Did you know many fonts can be used both in graphics and on the web? Once you find your brand's perfect font you can use it for your website text! Take a look at the Web Font Generator at Font Squirrel.

MY FAVOURITE FREE EDITORIAL STYLE FONTS

For my hand picked collection of free fonts, take a look at my pinterest board called "Branding & Free Fonts". I will be updating this board whenever I find new high quality fonts - so feel free to follow this board! :-)

WEBSITES WITH FREE FONTS:

If you would like to do some research on your own, these are a few websites where I have found some excellent free fonts!

*Please note, I have not tried nor downloaded them all of these fonts personally - so please, as always, exercise caution when downloading anything from the internet!*

NEED HELP PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER?

You know what fonts you like, but you don't know how to put it altogether? Which fonts flatter each other? How big should I make the big ones and how small do I make the small ones? I suggest google image searching "magazine font combinations" or "elegant font combinations". This will give you a good idea of what style of fonts go together!

Thanks for reading! If you know someone who could benefit from this article please share it. And leave your thoughts and comments below. I'd love to hear from you!

With much love and gratitude,

heike delmore photography business mentor
 




CONTINUE TO:

- Don't say the M-word: For photogs who hate to talk about money
- How I used my competitors to increase my sales
About Heike
- Free Stuff

PHOTOGRAPHY TIPS YOU'LL LOVE

Join the community for a free serving of marketing, motivation
& sales tips right to your inbox.