Email Management


Balancing Work, Family, and Photography


Lesson Info

Email Management

I think this is a big one. A lot of people feel say they feel like they're an email all the time. We give the example yesterday about how we're spending all this time with on enquiries and even if it's ten minutes a day for five days, it's almost an hour in your week that you're not making any money, same thing that time is increased when you're having to go through and see which ones are the best ones to target. First, that completely blows the local to do list out of the water like there's. No point in having it at that point for having open each one, and then that's where you can get tripped up. What that something is urgent for them may not necessarily be important, and vice versa. And you're going to get muddled and the things that are inefficient and these could be easily automated. I know this stuff's, not sexy and fun, but I tell you, once I set this all up is so much easier. I do that this morning open on my email was like pinks and greens and yellows. I knew exactly which one...

I need to go to first by the filter name and by the colors. All right, so scheduling and e mails like I said in the very beginning that when I get the client that go through the whole checklist, I get the notifications in my inbox and the pretty much boom boom boom they filled out there, they've paid, I get the receipt, didn't they fill out the contract? I get the copy of it, and I also get the questions that I have the bottom line, what kind collection, that sort of stuff to make sure that they've read, I have all that, then I can send them right then and emails, a status we have this all set up. Do you want to save your pre consultation call in that exact same block of time is when I scheduled all the e mails of the reminder of when the session is going to be where it's going to be if there's any fees that they have to pay for any permits and licenses and also try to go ahead as scheduled? A thank you, mel for that exact same day, I'm just like a little hey, thanks so much for the session type of thing, but there's danger in this, I'm going to show you guys that if you do change a session and he forget tio, turn to cancel or amend your scheduled emails there's a problem, the next level of scheduling is when I when we're done with the gallery we've uploaded everything everything's back enough for us and we're good to go on that I go ahead and reach out to them and final when they're ordering sessions going to be I go ahead sir schedule the confirmation of the order in session a reminder of the ordering session and then if I allow them any time after the order in session do any more orders at that same moment I schedule another email that's a template of email that I'm dragging across that's going to go before the deadline of any extra orders that they can make so then at once time I've sat down and schedule all these to the same person um so yeah, there we go so at the time of the booking scheduled reminder email timer inquiry I also scheduled a follow up again if they convert term inquiry to client, you got to make sure that you do eliminate that and when we get into the database stuff you're going to see how you can automate that even more but you're just sticking an email and scheduling and when the galleries complete sent a request for cell session gallery expiration reminder this is really important if you just upload to stuff the gallery and send a link to a client and expect them to order and then you're like, well why aren't they ordering it's in my contract that ordered fourteen days they didn't read and it's really your responsibility to remind them because they they don't may not have ill intentions, I get busy and if someone has to follow up with me and they just sending a gentle hey, I'll get it done and so I do about a forty eight hour reminder if I ever do galleries like that, especially for residual sales, I put a deadline on those as well and so it's not it's, not the session that never ends at that point and as some kind of their feet to the fire to get ordered and a lot of sales will come in those last forty eight hours want you have that email, but I don't have to think about it's not on my local to do it because I've already done it all at one time, so now we're being ableto scoop, you know, pare down our local to do list by having it all scheduled at front. I'm you can utilize there's two main ones that I really recommend they're mad mimi airmail trip the reason I recommend them is because that they are free up just certain amount of contacts in the question that we had yesterday also was what if about capturing of leads and stuff he's also will do the same thing for you can bring people on two different groups on I made the I gave the example if we have the contact form for those that are ready to pull the gun and book but you also want to capture the leads of people that are not right rhett yeti no not yet ready to book but may still one information to find out different promotions the stuff that's going on the's functions because you get the scheduling stuff in the exact same dashboard you're also going to be able to capture people onto a list that is the lead list that you can keep following up with and that's just something put on your in box on your website stay updated with me and that's my recommendation and so that you could also schedule quarterly marketing e mails at least quarter leaks and mentioned that's kind of how I work with my pricing and my marketing and business plans everything is quarterly to clients and enquiries so if I haven't quarries that it was sitting there for a bit in the follow up I hear you said to follow up I never hear from them again okay, but they're still on the list so I haven't completely dropped them the example that I have for this and I'm gonna expand on it some more later is that I had a girl that came to me a woman I'm sorry and she wanted to book and she didn't have the money at the time and normally I would have written her off I kind of touched on this yesterday and only would have, you know, normal photographer business under way although she's not worth my time I kept her on the lead list on the inquiry list I kept her on the quarterly campaigns and then when I was getting ready to move because we're military at the time we were at the time we were about to pcs, I was able to email on one of my quarterly campaigns out to my clients and in various list tell him I was moving. She then was ready to book she'd been saving for the last year, whereas if I had dropped her because she had told me I was, she couldn't afford it in my mind I heard she's going to pay my prices, but that wasn't it they didn't have the money she needed to say issues needed a general idea more of what she wanted to say for even though we had that on the website of in the average client's spends ex she's really wanted to see what I had to offer, and so I was able to capture her eventually and it didn't cost me any more money and don't take any more time her information was already input and because I scheduled out a quarterly email john it was all in there for me and I got her and I got all the referrals out of her when when you're talking about how things are coming in and you know where to categorize them, and not because when they fill things out on your web site, that automatically puts him into categories like if it's coming through as an inquiry versus their contract stuff, is it? I'm kind of confused about how that comes in organized. I have just the general on my website, I've got my like my blogging about me and all that kind of stuff. I had the contact form that is already going to categories put everyone in tow, one list it doesn't identify the determine your team that's coming in my inbox, all of that and those are the people. Typically they're ready to pull the gun, pull the trigger on the gun to book me that may require we're going to see a little bit that may require from me, too put them into leans enquiries and clients. I've got three main lists, right? And then we have so the leads are the ones that we have, like, stay updated thing that's kind of like a newsletter sign up that you get when you want pottery barn or send you coupons and that kind of stuff that is gonna be the lead that's going to be people that aren't ready, that to book they don't want inquire yet, but they still want to get information that's just a subscribe form on the site, then the inquiry list is where I'm going to put all those enquiries that come in through the contact former they may have email me directly if they do, and then obviously I couldn't remove you from inquiry list to client list the reason I want to sparse the south I can email all at once, but I don't want to send a thie client promotion to a lead that has never even contacted me directly same thing is I'm going toe I'm gonna have different approaches for that inquiry zara list that I could tap into when it is a slower season or slower ma, I only have five sessions. I need eight let me pull out that inquiry and see if there's anything I can do to try to get them in the door for this month instead of mass emailing on my client's cause I don't want to bug all the past clients and may have just had a session a month ago. I want to bug them to book another session, it doesn't make you know it doesn't make any sense and waste their time, I want them to, I want them to want to open my emails. Corley stuff that comes through like upcoming mommy and me events in those type of things I want to put them into those and not nurse larry a targeted hit and need somebody right now type of thing so that cleared up you know, I'm glad you asked that there's three main list and you can keep saying many that we could take the clients or to see we can break it down to the type of photography that it is then the type of potential crossover we'll talk about that automated you're not having to go in and manually do it I'm going to show you that in the database in the mankind management section how they could do it if you do it just in a newsletter program the same one is that you schedule ah you're gonna have to hand do it um for the most part but the good thing is that milk shrimp on here integrates with the database systems and I'm gonna show you guys later on dh so for example when I put them into that system they will automatically get emails through here whenever I'd push it out but aiken tagged them based on the type of session I had the type of potential session I want to target them for like it was a couple sessions I may want to target her for boudoir we're going to see that I'm going to really expand on that next section okay, so many questions about that, but this is part of the whole system of being able to email on schedule, so I don't have to keep that, because if I had to put schedule and follow up e mails on the local list, I would have, like twenty local with sion things to get through. I would even get to the really other priority maintenance things, and I need to get done for the business with I got a question, yes, when you get busy and you feel like you can't handle like email stuff, is there? Is that one of your do you have to go to you have a vendor, don't you? Is there anybody and you bring it hasn't assistant or you can? We're going talk about that a little bit and outsourcing you can get someone like for these few days, I got someone to manage it for me, so that there's any issues so you can find someone through referral. You can look on the lance and no desk and those types of things like you asked me yesterday what are some things you don't really want to release control up? I don't really want to release control of the one on one communications with my clients unless my client knows they're getting me. An amber, you know, like, they're one if they're just booking me and they really want me and some people may disagree with me on this, but the way that my business model is I am very one on one on dh so that's, the way I present myself that you are getting me for them process of it wonderful said help! Okay, all right, but free, you know, if you can't outsource your email it's a very freeing thing, I don't know this is the first time ever done it, and I we logged on last night, not by hot could get used to this, but at the same time I had client emails that she couldn't respond tio because she may not know what we talked about in the session, even if I feel about the client, you know, the client notes section or anything, she doesn't know all that familiarity, and I need to know that stuff to all my client interactions if I do my sales because I need to be able to remember stuff that they said during the session with me. Oh man, that image of timmy to be great and canvas, we're going to remember that the session so campus could be one of the things that I show her is that you remember this shot, I'm connecting the dots from familiarity and confidence and their decision reducing the barrier for them to give me their money I sound really money hungry but it's boring business it's all about wanting to get that sail in the end but making clients happy without being run over all right? So here's another way I'm glad you asked that you can filter your e mails to be an automated assistant for you obviously they're not answering and emailing them for you but you're able to go through so that your local to do list is not this crazy crazy thing when you walk in you just go one by one it's kind like the whole idea when you just walked in the checklist section yesterday everyone had one checklist they just went in order probably do that e mails as well it's it's habit to go in order of what's there and so by setting up filtering rules in the email client that you use, you can have this all done for you so that I can see the client things that air priority clients are going to be more of a priority then maybe something that I don't need to that's all my global list in july or december if I'm at the beginning of the year eso were I utilize a gmail so I have my custom rachel it rachel bronchi dot com but I have a set up through the business aps so I actually logging in gino it goes in and out as rachel rachel breaking, but it is still done in gmail and the reason for that is because then I can have it on my phone, my talent, my laptop everywhere I don't have to log into the sea panel or whatever my husband's probably because he's explained this to me one hundred times that only know it's called we don't have the log into your host who manages that email in order to check it you can do it on the go on dh they're the ones gino specifically anything yahoo in them have this as well have the filtering function so there's three core filtering methods the guys need to get set up I think this is a mule could do tonight when you leave here if you know brian's not fried so you can monday morning, everything is a little bit more filtered out you're going to set up filter per contact you're going to see here in a minute, though you need to know who that contact is. So once I have a client who is in the door, I know who they are going to tag them is a client, they're going to a client color and they're gonna tag client with their name because we're back with the client checklist I'm getting all those notifications on when all those notifications to be one folder I don't want to have two hands do it because that's containing thirty seconds if I even get around to doing it, but I want to be able to if I ever have to go back and check to make sure they finish the checklist or anything that it's all in one spot for me, I do want to set filter by inquiry, so the inquiry's that come in through a contact former also be tagged a different color, because those maybe those maybe really quick. Since I've said of the client guide and everything, this could be really quick turnarounds that I can get done in the morning that's that priority of really quick things get out of the way before you move on two bigger task, and you can also filter to set up by subject within the within the forms, like the gravity forms you could have it set when I e mailed you that has a certain subject. So for example, I'm requesting client testimonials from my past clients. I sent out an email because I have them all on one list. I haven't embedded page of my website using gravity forms or one other plug in asking all these testimonial questions well, when they all come in, I want them to be tagged, always testimonial, so I'm ready to go create the testimonial page I know what subject lines going to be because I set that up so when I set up the form I go then into my its gmail and then there's the gear tool settings filter and then create new filter and I think I have the images on here in a second, but that way all those would be in one spot so that when I'm ready to go through those I have them all and you can have multiple filters as well it can tag them also to their name so when they open up their their folder, their testimonials there too but I don't have to be clicking in and out of client folders and it's going to testimonial one when I'm ready to use it like if I'm creating marketing campaigns that's on my list for the day I don't want to spend twenty minutes trying to find the testimonials there there an email or they're also in the dashboard of the digital form three core filtering methods that I want to utilize so they can boom look at it right away this is the one setting it up for contact I can put the person's name and the subject or any of this other stuff I pray my stick with the name and identify I'm gonna put the crate the filter to put them into like client dash jane's meth whoever it is so they have their own folder so all the communication that that point once they're a client are all in that folder everything is good to go and that's relatively easy and skeevy guys the directions on that but you can do this for anybody you can do this say that you're print lab send you invoices you can filter so they all go to an invoice thing if you have a c p a I have this so she can be put into a holder until I'm ready to deal a taxes and then I respond but I can also look and see immediately just my client oh, I have an overarching client folders in all of these breakdown per name because that have a lot of e mails and to respond to that I probably need to shift my local list for the day and respond to client e mails first before any other business matters so they each get their own folder but I have the overarching so like all business stuff is gonna have been sub folders clients have one and they all each have their own sub folder that are set up through creating a filter with the search and you can also include chat so if you talk to your clients through chat I got to get a soap box I am not a fan of discussing anything with clients outside of email or phone or in person obviously on social media is a no no very big no, no text message perfect example this week, my phone all of a sudden restarted on my way here lost every single text message that I had in there, which wasn't a big deal because I don't talk to clients that way but had a lot of other information that may have saved don't have it anymore. So what happens if there's an issue we have no communications to include at any contacts that any relationship or contractor anything same thing going and goes for social media's? Well, like, don't get offended if you message man social media and I said, hey, can you email me? Or I ask you for your email address because I also want it all in one place? I don't have time to check nine hundred social media accounts because they're probably going to miss it. You don't want to miss an inquire a leader important client question at all what's my clients become my friends and we're done with the transaction sure weaken tex and talk about like workout stuff and food in the kids that's fine down talking for actual business transaction stuff try to keep it an email and it all goes together, so little soapbox I just said, I don't know, I just don't have time to check all of that kind of stuff on gets really inefficient for you guys to filter by contact filter it by inquiry that's the contact form that you can set up making has the word you can also do it that if it asking certain buzzwords that come in price you may still end up getting some extra things that's a pricing and obviously because you're the filter is only as good as what you put in I mean it's going to find everything that says price but if there's buzz words that people have coming in your inbox email you could still filter them out by putting them in there has the words or doesn't have a swell okay oh and it says you want to do if you have attachment funny story I got on my rant about pts yesterday when I was done my husband sent me a pdf and I couldn't get it to open and I was like a perfect example of why I don't like pdf um and I still never got it open last night um filter it by subject so this like I mentioned yesterday for taxes when I am out and I purchased something I try to keep it all in a credit card and when I think about it I try to actually take a picture of the receipt because I am standing at the cashier thing and I had the kids in the car by the time I ran into the car it's never going to get into my house never you knows no matter how much I have little zipper pockets and I want to put the receipts and there that bag's gonna be gone at some point so I always take my phone, take a picture, email it put in the subject line the year in tax receipts automatically goes into their or it can upload a drop box, but it automatically goes into there so that when I'm done, I just really here to see peering like here it is or if I'm in putting it into the spreadsheet myself, which I dio I'm able to pull out one folder and have it all right there I don't have to search in the search bar receipt, jimmy and a whole bunch of receipts anyone's that are specific to what I'm talking about and that's a really, really important um that's a big one, I think for tax for my organization of taxes and then you could set a filter per type of action. Oh yeah, this one talk about it, you can apply them tio labella's well and a color so that all of the clients will be like a yellow. And if I see hotsy yellows or something, I know that I need to work on that and you can choose a category on these categories I stick everyone and files of client in their name and so forth that's pretty relatively simple, but it makes it so much easier when opening in box. It's not is overwhelming the elephant just a little bit of time. So my recommendations do not have an email. There's also for personal and business same thing goes for your business, your bank accounts. No way. I mean, even just it just stinks. It is not get on dh. Then you have to sort through everything as well. Uh, a lot of times I have people that will, like described to mind the law talk newsletter. Fantastic thing. I do say so myself, but they will then have that going to there. Business email. Okay, well, good. And I'm just thinking, oh, man, but I'm then taking up their time from their clients. I hope they have a filter set up. Maybe they will after watching this. But if they don't have it filtered out or it's not going to like an education specific email, that's one more thing. They're having a trip over in the morning in order to get to actually what needs to be done. Education is important, but you still have priority things they need to get done, so always have separate email addresses for just between personal and biz business stuff on like I mentioned a little bit ago the google business app make sure the email is on platform and easy access on the go just just that way you can I could be sitting in the car pool line has sent an email because if I have to await left along into a dashboard on a computer, I'm not gonna get much john at all and each client should have their own filter but I can combine like newsletters and promotions all until once if I am subscribed to multiple people like creative life goes into an education folder s so that I can keep abreast of I do have a slower time that day and educations on my globalist aiken go check it out let's see what's going on I don't get to filter happy don't do too many because then he's like, oh, I got an empty in box you see all the little colors over here and they're like I'm good for today no, you still have stuff you need to dio or becomes overwhelming because there's way too many filters I really try to stick to clients, enquiries and business stuff as much as possible filter yeah filtering business seem all swirling vendors and labs because I don't need the receipt right then but it's good to have it sticking in the receipt folder okay and to keep up with sales and filter invoices

Class Description

"Achieve work/life balance” doesn’t have to be an abstract goal -- it can be an immediate, concrete reality. Join Rachel Brenke, author of The Laundry List: A Mom’s Guide to Running a Successful Business and Home, to learn how to build a photography business while remaining present in your family life without feeling constantly pulled in different directions.

Rachel will share her expertise as an MBA, an attorney, and long-time business consultant. The checklists and tools Rachel provides will help you lay a sound legal and financial foundation for your business, so you’ll have more time to focus on both your photography and your professional life. You’ll learn how to efficiently plan and outsource work so your business runs more seamlessly. You’ll develop strategies for sales, networking, and business growth that you can accomplish in more efficiently in less time.

The blend of business fundamentals, legal skills, and real-life scenarios you’ll explore in this course will prepare you for anything you might face as a professional photographer, giving you more time to lead a stress-free, balanced life.