For Photographers | Its slow season! Now what?
Hello to my fellow photogs! Summer has passed and wedding season with it. Now, as the fall leaves disapear, family portrait season is coming to a close and you are left wondering what to do with your slow season, other than enjoying some actual quality time with your family and friends!
Its one of the nice things about being a photographer and one of the hard things as well - the fact that we have busy and slow seasons. I shot over 30 weddings this year, sometimes 3 in a week and it definetly left me feeling burnt out and ready for a break! But I want to use this time wisely! Ill take the next several months to do some really crucial things for my business and my clients and I wanted to share a few with you guys!
-First thing I do is asses the past year and create goals for next year! Did I take on enough weddings? Too many? Do I need to space my weddings out more evenly (this one is a HUGE one for me! I took on 9 wedding in the month of June and I will for sure be pacing myself better next year! It was exhausting!) How was my balance of weddings with other sessions? Did I serve my clients well? Did I grow as a photographer? As a business owner? Where did I grow the most? Where did I lack? What do I need to improve for next year? And then set goals accordingly!
-I really like to focus on creating an exceptional experience for my clients! For me, this means having guides on things like how to prep for a shoot, a posing crash course so ensure they feel comfortable and prepared, a clothing guide, ect. This is the time I review the experience I provide as a whole, as well as specifically these guides to see where I can improve and update! Whats on my list for the coming year? Finding even more vendors to give my clients discounts and feebies because I LOVE to spoil my clients and support local businesses! Its a win-win!
-Update your website, portfolio and get that blog caught up! My ‘to blog’ list is currently sitting at 23 sessions! During busy season, my focus is just on getting images back to my clients in a timely manner and not on keeping everything updated! So I use this time to make sure my most current work is on my website and get caught up on blogging. Just today I updated my website galleries and Ive hired an assistant to help me get all these blogs published!
-Celebrate the successes you had! This is so important to do! Give yourself credit for all your hard work! I have a book where I write down all my business and photography goals and track them through out the year. I also write down any successes I had, big or small! I go back a read those sucesses, as well as the reviews my clients leave me and then I celebrate! You get to decide what celebrating means to you! Dance party? Ice cream? Facial? Just simply feeling good and patting yourself on your back? Trip to Disneyland?
-Education! Depending on where you are in your career, this might mean creating educational content to share with others, or it might mean continuing to educate yourself! There are so many workshops and conferences going on this time of year such as United, Photo Native, ect. Dont want to leave home for a conference, check there is so much education you can purchase and do from home! Some of my favorite photographers that have fantastic education resources are Kylee Maughan of Kylee Ann Studios, and Katelyn James of Katelyn James Photography, Amy and Jordan, and of course, keep an eye out for the launch of my educational resources! I am currently working on a posing guide for photographers as well as a Work Flow guide to show you guys how I keep my turn around to 2-3 days for most of my portrait sessions!
-Styled Shoots. Ill be honest with you, I am not a huge fan of Styled Shoots the way most photographers do them. Most of them have too many photographers, so you dont get a chance to actually practice important decision making skills like where to place your subject, how to pose and direct them, ect. Even if I do get a turn to direct, there are 10 other photographers capturing the same exact image and I walk away with nothing unique or really specific to my style. But I think putting on your own styled shoots, with maybe one or two other photographers can be a great way to get out and practice a new style, try out some new equipment, make sure you dont get rusty in your slow season, ect.
Did you like these tips? Be sure to keep an eye out for lots more fantastic educational content to come from Kristi Alyse Photography and subscribe below!