Hello! Thank you so much for stopping by and I hope you enjoy my first blog post about business! I'm pretty excited to expand this part of my business as I try to help others achieve their goals in starting their own businesses. I am in no way an expert! I have never been to school for photography or business school. But I do have a profitable business that I’ve built from the ground up and I know that I have knowledge and skills that I can share.
Over the past six years I have spent countless hours learning from the experts. I've gotten up way too early and stayed up way too late trying to catch as many live, online workshops as I can. I’ve purchased online courses and resources. I’ve read and downloaded all of the free resources I can find. I’ve invested a few THOUSAND dollars into my small business. In return I’ve met hundreds of incredible people, clients and other creatives, all while my small business grows into a profitable second income for our family. There’s no greater feeling than pouring money and time into an idea and having people find me in my tiny corner of the world and trusting me and investing their time and money into my business.
This blog post is the kickstarter to my journey into the influencer world. My hope is that I can now use the knowledge and skills I’ve gained through all of the research and hands-on experience I’ve done to build a profitable business that you are passionate about.
The following three topics I put into practice in the last two years and I have seen tremendous growth in my business, skills, and relationships in the industry.
1. FIND SOMEONE WHO KNOWS WHAT THEIR DOING!
One of the best things you can do to increase your skills and learn the ins and outs of an industry is find a mentor or someone who will allow you to shadow or learn from them. For photographers, get second shooting jobs! Reach out to some local photographers and offer them your services for free in exchange for being able to shadow them during a photo session or wedding. You’ll have to invest your time in this. There are even some incredible people out there who will allow you to take photos at a wedding they’ve booked and use them for your own portfolio. (I am one of those people *wink wink*.
My business started by second shooting for anyone who would hire me. I didn’t care how much they were paying me or if they were at all. All I cared about was that I was going to get hands-on experience! Even if all I was doing was carrying a photographer’s gear or holding a family members purse while they were getting their photos taken. That experience is priceless! I’ve learned how to handle myself when a drunk family member gets a little carried away and starts telling me how to take photos (Put a harassment clause in your contracts!). I’ve learned how to get my normal amount of deliverable images when things are running late and I still need to do the couples photos. You can’t learn these things by going to school or reading blogs!
For MLM businesses (Multi-Level Marketing such as Young Living, Beachbody, Rodan & Fields, Tupperware, etc,) find someone who runs their business WELL and offers some sort of business coaching for their downline. Find someone who is readily available to answer your questions and help you build your business. I follow some incredible MLM business owners on Instagram who offer online workshops and provide resources for how you can create an income in an industry where it might feel like everyone is trying to sell the same products.
IT PAYS TO LEARN FROM SOMEONE WHO KNOWS WHAT THEY ARE DOING! Seek out these people on Instagram or in your community. Send them a DM or a text and just ASK if they can help you out.
2. GET BUSY LOOKING BUSY!
One of the best things you can do for your business is show people that you're busy. Even if or when you're not! If you’re just starting your business get creative and keep showing up on your social media every single day. I promise that the busyness will soon happen! Set up photo sessions with family members and friends. Take pictures of your dog or children. Take pictures when you go out with friends or family. Make your friends pose in front of a mural any chance you get (That will most definitely get lots of likes!) Post different photos from the same session in between your other posts until your next session. You will get more traffic to your page when you’re consistently showing up and engaging your audience.
People will only hire you or purchase your product when they can trust what you’re selling. Get consistent with your editing. Share about why your facial wash is better than an affordable drug store brand. Post before and afters when you finish a workout program. Show people why they should hire you instead of their cousin who isn’t going to charge them anything!
If you’re selling a product post your reviews or how you use it in your social media posts. The first people that will support your business will be family and close friends. When that happens get them to take before and afters for you to post. Or have them tell you their favourite ways to use the products. Plan to go LIVE on a social media platform and tell your followers when you’ll be doing it. Let them send you their questions in advance, make a pinned comment on your live saying “Ask me any questions about the business!”. Remember that even if there are only 1 or 5 people watching when your live more people will be able to view it for the next 24 hours afterwards! Let those people know they can still ask their questions to your DM’s and if you get enough maybe do another live in the next couple days!
3. INVEST INVEST INVEST!
This goes for your time as well as your money. Invest in the camera you’re buying. Invest in the programs you need in order to serve your clients (online gallery platforms, editing software, online contracts for ease and a faster booking process). Invest in the products you are wanting to sell. Try them out so you can recommend your favourites and tell people how they have changed your life. Invest in your website and your marketing materials. Potential clients can easily tell who is serious about their products or services and who is just trying to make a buck. Growth happens when you have a professional online and in person presence. If you don’t have a landing page where people can find the information they need or easily contact you, you are missing out on so many potential sales and connections!
You should also invest your time into learning and growing your skills. Don’t just buy the product, USE IT! You won’t be able to sell a product honestly if you yourself have not tried it.
Spend time planning out your week or month on social media. If you invest a few hours at the beginning of the week and decide what photo your going to post and what you’re going to say along with it and when you’re going to post it, you’ll save countless hours during the week trying to decide what you should say that day. You will also more than likely not have very good engagement or traffic because you didn’t make a plan as to how you were going to serve your audience with that post.
Thank you so much for reading along! In the last year or so I’ve become so passionate with helping people build their businesses. If you have any questions or you enjoyed this post leave a comment below!