Congratulations, you took the first step in making your photography business official. You got your insurance and tax things all set up, and you are ready to go. Now what? What other photography business tools do you need to really and truly GROW your business? Here are the 5 tools that I can’t live without.
Your website is your face to the world. Unlike social media, you own your website. As photographers, we really have the upper hand in creating beautiful imagery for our websites. Put your best work forward. Show what you want to shoot. Make it beautiful, easy to navigate, and don’t forget your copy (how else is google going to index your website?)!
Speaking of websites, let’s get into another important tool in the interwebs. The Google suite. No, it’s not just having a Gmail account.
So you can learn all the things about your website performance.
So you can tell Google to crawl your website.
So you have a place for reviews and essentially a storefront. Also, google my business is essential for your local SEO.
This is a more advanced tracking tool. Think of this as your tracking bucket. This is where you can put your Facebook pixel, your analytics account, other advanced things you want to track –like button clicks or email marketing. So that when you put your code on your website, there is only one code to put in. Think faster load time.
So you can advertise, duh.
So, what is a CRM, and what do they do? Well, first, they are a place where ALL of your client information lives. Flush that excel spreadsheet down the toilet because you don’t need it anymore. Not only does your CRM act like a Rolodex (is this me showing my age?), but you know those emails you write over and over? Ya, your CRM can store those. It also allows you to send your clients contracts, prep guides, schedulers, and invoices (that they can pay instantly). Think faster money in the bank and better and CONSISTENT client communications.
There are many many options for CRMs to use. Some of the most popular are 17hats, Dubsado, Tave, Honeybook. I use Dubsado because of its beautiful forms with custom CSS coding blocks and robust workflows.
CRMs are time-consuming and daunting to set up, but you can consider them your studio manager once they are in place. They free up your time to make sure you can give your clients the time and energy they deserve (rather than writing the same email over and over and over again). So, if you have the financial ability to hire someone to do this for you, do it. Or, if you are a Dubsado user or are thinking of switching over, I highly encourage Colie James’ CRM Blueprint course OR her VIP day. You will not regret it.
A potential client ends up on your website, maybe they are considering a photography session in the future, but they aren’t ready to commit just yet. You know, in the research phase. So they are on your website, and then what? They close it down and forget about you? NO! Not you, because you have an email marketing platform and they signed up. Unlike social media, you also own this list of email addresses. It will always be there for you to stay in front of potential clients so that when they are ready to book, you are top of mind. I’m not going to go into the nitty-gritty of how to use email marketing without being spammy effectively, but more to inform you on the tool that is available to you. One of the most beautiful platforms that can automate your emails and segment your audiences (so that you don’t send newborn information to a family session client) is Flodesk. And the cherry on top…the email templates are beautiful to boot. Win-Win.
You need to make sure your clients get their photos, right? So rather than a dropbox link, or a gasp, thumb drive…why not make it pretty, too? This is even more important if you decide you want to sell print products and don’t necessarily want to make in-person sales. Some of the most popular are pixieset, pic-time, and ShootProof. There are pluses and minuses to all of these, so find the best fit for you and your business.
Now you have all the tools in place, bring on the clients! You are set up for success now. Boom.
In case you need the links:
Pic-time Use code: SP2G7S for a month on me 😉
Feb 23, 2022
©2021 Alison Amick Photo + Film
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