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March 2017 archive

Know The How To Plus The Want

Most photographers (including myself) jump right in to starting a business, trying to figure out how to succeed and thinking that all they really needed to know was in their head, or they would learn it from their own experience.

But it all takes so long.

I found some old financial records last week, and was surprised to see that it took me 12 years before I “turned the corner” in my business.

Things can happen a lot quicker in today’s world with greater technology and of course the internet.

I made a note and circled the month it happened, and wrote the words “The Turning Point.”

That month I employed my first staff member.

My monthly turnover started to double each month.

I had a business that was growing, and it did so for many years.

I reflected on how I had sustained my passion and motivation for such a long period of time, before my success.

It was important that I had finally learned the lesson of the how to, but my drive was in my want to.

I wanted to succeed, and that want never left me, even now as a Photography Business Coach.

My photography studio from day one was my only source of income, so I was driven to succeed.

You must have a strong want for you photography business to grow and prosper.

Ask yourself, “Why do I want this business to succeed?”

Have a conversation with yourself write down the answers where you can look at them each day.

Develop a strong want to succeed to continually grow your photography business, that you have created for yourself and your family.

It is very rewarding.

Photography Business Coach

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Is Your Pricing Right?

Photography Pricing
In my experience in talking to, and consulting with hundreds of portrait photographers, the area of pricing their photographs, is the most difficult part of their business, that they have to contend with. If your prices are too low, you not only attract the wrong type of clientele, but you also may not make any money.

You can in fact lose money. If the prices are too high, you may not get any customers at all. Both of these scenarios are of course not acceptable.

So how do you determine your prices? To help us get to this, you should first ask yourself this simple question. How must should I charge? I will answer this for you. As much as possible!

One of the most important things that you have to do in your business is to set your prices. Most photographers totally get their prices wrong, and have price lists that are too confusing, and far too detailed.

Getting your pricing right will be crucial to your business success. Your prices for your imagery will determine what market you will attract, your brand, your competition, and the amount of money that you will earn.

Because this such a crucial part of your planning, make sure that you follow carefully the steps in this book.

Photography Business Coach

Being a photography business coach I have learnt that to develop your price list, the first thing that you need to do, is start to think differently. You probably set up your price list by guessing at numbers, or worse than that , you may have obtained a copy of a competitors price list and then made your prices cheaper! This is the exact opposite of what you should be doing.

A badly thought out price list will cost you money, and may even bring your business into debt. It will force you to work many hours without pay, and may even destroy your love of photography. Compiling a well thought out, and realistic price structure, will help to drive your passion, attract good customers, and help you achieve the financial success that you deserve.

Over the many years that I have worked on my business, getting the price list right, was always high on my list of things to do.

I have built a guide to building a solid portrait price list that you will constantly revisit over the years. But the price list that you are about to structure, will be your default. It will be the foundation of your business.

It has worked for many photographers from a variety of backgrounds and in many different locations.

Everyone’s pricing is different and it is up to you to determine what is right for your business.

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#berniegriffiths

Walking Your Photography Path

Finding Your Photography Path

It doesn’t matter whether you have a shop front photography or a studio on a main road, or you work out of your home, being a photography business coach I have discovered that there are 3 key points to making good money with your photography business.

Make Your Wall Art Shine

Selling only digital files will restrict your ability to maximise your sales and you will be unable to grow your business.

Understand that you will only sell what you show.

Having defined products also makes it easier for your customer to make their buying decisions.

When your client or potential client first walks into your studio their eyes should be drawn to beautiful large portraits on the walls.

This may seem obvious, but sometimes you may need to be reminded of this. You should regularly update your displays.

It’s important that you have on show larger wall décor in 24×30 size or above, rather than lots of smaller prints.

Don’t forget that your Wall Portraits should also have appropriate lighting on them to show off the quality, colour and textures, making them “jump off the walls.”

Track lighting in the ceiling, with the daylight balanced lights aimed at the wall portraits is a must have to achieve this. You want your portraits to be the brightest items in your studio.

Never have fluorescent lights around any area that you display your wall portraiture!

Avoid having 8×10’s or 5×7’s in frames sitting around, or even on your walls.

Smaller prints can be shown as Box Sets or Memory Boxes, with 10 or 20 matted images on archival art paper.

First Impressions Do Matter

Your potential client’s first impression is the lasting one, whether it is when they go to your website, speak to you on the phone, or go to your studio.

They are assessing whether they will spend any money with you and how much.

Creating a good first impression can sometimes take time, but always strive to be the best that you can be with your presentation and your knowledge of your products.

You could start by de-cluttering your studio. Is it messy? Framed prints sitting on the floor? Does the air smell a bit stale? Does the floor need a vacuuming? Are the windows clean? Do you dress appropriately? Do you have a deep knowledge of your products you can talk to your potential clients about?

Make Your Business Real

I have visited so many home businesses as my role as a photography business coach, and very few of them have had a sign outside their home to reassure me that I was at the right house.

Imagine your client arriving and wondering whether or not they are at the right house?

Their first impression isn’t one of trust, and certainty.

To make your business real, you must have signage. Can you imagine a book without a front cover? Well that’s your business if you do not have a sign with your logo on it, outside and inside your place of work.

How Much Should You Pay For A Photography Business Coach?

It is important that the coach that you select has been the owner of a successful photography business, and has “walked the walk.” This will give you the confidence to know that they know what it takes to be successful, and what it takes to create and grow your business.

Fees of a photography business coach will usually relate to the amount of experience that the coach has, not only in running a business, but how many years they have been coaching.

Like any form of expertise prices vary, and photography business coaching can cost from $250 for a single one hour consultation to the more intense twelve month photography business coaching priced up to over $12,000.

Some coaches charge a monthly fee, while others will come to your studio for a couple of days to provide you with the solutions to your problems.

Many photographers are part time coaches, and are offering coaching services on a more casual and unstructured basis.

A part time coach may charge for a short time program and you can expect fees of around $1,500-$3,000 for this type of short term guidance.

When selecting a coach, know what expectations and outcomes you are looking for.

Is your main problem Marketing, Workflow, Pricing, or do you simply need someone to motivate and drive you? Or a combination of all?

Remember that you don’t know what you don’t know, and a photography business coach should give you the knowledge that you lack to implement your business growth.

It is also important to find a photography business coach who you trust, who you can work with, and who is a good fit for you and your business.

Whatever coach you decide on, what you definitely should be looking for is a return on your investment.

The bottom line is that a good photography business coach will help, drive, and guide you to increase your turnover, maximise your profit, and give you the work/life balance that you are looking for.

And of course, don’t forget to get heaps of testimonials and referrals if possible.

#photographybusinesscoach

#photographycoach

#businesscoach

#berniegriffiths