Building Your Photography Business for under $3,000

 

Lesson Info

What is The Purpose of Your Website?

I'm gonna show you our website and let you know how we use it, and our homepage with our very first interaction with our clients. So, let's go ahead and pull that up, and take a look at this website here. So this is it. It used to be Holcombe Photography when we were doing weddings and portraits. We have actually rebranded ourselves as Famagogo, Inspiring Adventure: Familystyle. This is our whole new personality. And so, you can see, right off the bat, there are images that scroll through. So, all the things I've talked about our business are mirrored here, so these are all adventurous places. They have the same bold, dramatic lighting, they're all natural, they represent our family, our daughter is part of these images. It encompasses our new brand of the kind of images that we are sharing. Okay, these are the images that we want to create for our clients. So, right off the bat, we have a really striking gallery that automatically scrolls through. We're super selective on these images...

that scroll through on this banner part of our website. And we have navigation at the top of our page. We have all these different tabs here, home, and meet the family. Meet the family's our first thing. We want people to know who we are. We have portraits, adventure, fine art, blog, contact us. We have lots of different categories, but honestly, I want people to be able to get a feel for everything right here on the front page. So, striking images of the kind of work that we want to create. And then, all you do is scroll down. So, you can manually scroll through those, but then, we have a little blurb right below that that talks about what we do. "Exploring wild and natural places is our passion, "sharing these places with our clients is our specialty." Right there in a nutshell. Remember that short description? That's it, wild and natural places, our passion, sharing these with our clients is our specialty. That's what we do. Okay, and there's more, and you can learn more about our family there, but that first sentence nails it, what we do. So, you need to have that description that we talked about in the last segment, the 140 characters or the briefly expanded description. And that needs to be right on the front. What is it that you do? What is it you do better than anybody else? Needs to be right here, quick and easy to find. And then, right below this, look right here, book a session. This is what I want people to do. Okay, remember when we talked about those marketing questions, what do you want your client to do? I want him to book a session with me. The book a session just goes to a contact us, email us. They have to enter their phone number to be able to email me, so I can pick up the phone and call 'em back. It's a setting that I can set up. Okay? So, below "exploring wild and natural places," we have an opportunity to view our work, and we have a few different kinds of work that we specialize in right now. So, if I click on this, the first thing that pops up is adventure, because that's what we wanna do the most. And you can click on that and go to a gallery that represents our adventurous images, and this is mostly our family out in the wild. Then we have another gallery that they can go to and learn more about our portraits, taking other people out to wild and natural places and sharing those images. And then, the last one is our fine art images, and how can people purchase our fine art images as decor for their home. That's what we do, all of it, right there in a gallery. People can click on that, they can see the gallery, it's easy to find, it's easy to see the style, it's easy to see what we do. This is all still just on the homepage, so I keep scrolling down. What do I want my clients to do? I want them to contact me. Here it is again. So, I've given them an opportunity to see our images, I've given a brief description about what we do, I've given 'em a Book a Session, that's a prompt, and then I've given 'em another opportunity to contact us. Don't we look like a family that they just wanna contact right there? (laughing) And so, here's the area. So, the ones with the asterisks, that email and that phone number, they've got to include those to be able to contact us. So, I wanna pick up the phone and call 'em right back. And then, we actually have our blog located right on our home page. And here's what we have on our blog. There are articles that we've written, "Home is Where You Park It," it's all about living in an RV. People get a feel for our values, our lifestyle, our personality. The next thing that they see is Famagogo's Third Year Video. It is all of our favorite images crammed into four minutes that is high-paced, fast, action, out in the wild, doing what we love to do. That's the second thing on our blog. The third thing, oh my gosh, it's Alaska! We just came from Alaska not too long ago and had amazing, extraordinary adventures. So, I want people to read about these and get a feel for who we are as people, who we are as adventurers, and who we are as a business. So, if you think about it, what I've done on the home page is I've told the story of our entire company in several different ways. I did it through our images, I did it through a short description, and then I did it through more expanded articles that let our personality shine through. Who are we? What do we do? Where are we? I mean, 'cause what we do is pretty weird. There aren't too many families out there living in an RV traveling North America, and so this is a hard thing for people to wrap their heads around. And are we somebody that they really wanna do business with? Are they even gonna be around to follow through? If I give them $3000, are they gonna take my money and run? So, I need to tell our story, and I need to tell our story very authentically, and I need to give them a reason to love us and want to do business with us. And it was hard coming up with this brand. This wasn't an easy thing to figure out. And when we started our business, and we wanted to do weddings and portraits, we were very closed off from our clients. We put a superficial face forward. We thought that we needed to be high-end, and we needed to wear specific clothes, and we needed to do specific things, and drive specific cars, and all of these things that weren't really us. We put a face forward of elite, high-end images, and this was our persona that we put forward, and there was always a disconnect, 'cause I'm a girl that loves to walk around in flip-flops. I like to dangle off of cliffs. You will find me with my hair in pigtails, out in the wild, all the time. And so, when I had this wearing dark clothes, and being fancier than I really was, there wasn't harmony between our business and our personal life. We didn't necessarily want our clients to know that we were dangling off cliffs in our spare time. They might be a little bit worried about us showing up for their wedding, right? (laughing) It wasn't until we let the us shine through in our business that we found real success in our marketing. It has to be us. So, as you think about the personality that you're setting forward, make it authentic. Make it real. Make it you. And you know what, not everybody's gonna love you. 'Cause that's life, not everybody loves you, right? But your target client is gonna love you, and they're gonna love you so much that they can't get enough of you, okay? So, as you're building your website, let the real you shine through. Let the images that you want to create shine through, let who you are shine through, and own it, 'cause you guys are all amazing. And I was scared to let the real us shine through, and when I did, my dream business appeared in front of me. So go for it, try it. Be you, be you online, and be obvious that it's you.

"If you are serious about starting and running a successful photography business... this IS the road map to follow!"
-JB Photo Design, CreativeLive Student

When starting a new business, you will make hundreds of decisions, and many of those can be costly and affect the future of your business. Most photographers have little direction available on how to take these critical first steps to set themselves up for success.

Kathy Holcombe and her husband Peter have built multiple photography businesses over the last 15 years. Kathy will share what they have learned so that you won’t waste time, money and resources trying to find the perfect formula.

You will learn how to:

  • Define your brand
  • Set up social media channels and a business website to support the vision of your brand
  • Develop an effective strategy for marketing to your ideal client
  • Develop a product line and profitable pricing structure
  • Develop a sales strategy to maximize your time and sales average

This class is for anyone who is standing at a crossroads, wanting to start a photography business, but not sure exactly how to go about it. You’ll not only learn how to get you started, but also how to turn a profit through your photography in your very first year of business. Skip years of trial and error and invest your precious startup dollars in strategies, tools and equipment that will immediately start making you money.

"You don't need to be a beginner to get great info from this class, it's packed with ideas and tips that even an experienced pro can put to work and take to the bank literally the next day. I highly recommend this class."
-Jeph DeLorme, CreativeLive Student

 
 
 
 

Reviews

  • Kathy was a wonderful instructor. She was engaging and someone who was precise and incredibly helpful. We have a full time photography business and are always looking for new ways of running our business. Her information was insightful and forced us to have conversations about our business that we have haven't had in several years. She is fantastic and someone who has the information needed to help you start or expand your business. Thank you for a wonderful class!!
  • Thank you Kathy for yet again another very thought provoking class. You are such an inspiration, teaching us the right questions to ask ourselves so we too can be brilliant photographers / entrepreneurs. I was a fulltime RVer for seven years, traversing 44 states and seeing some of the most beautiful places on our planet. It gave me a great opportunity to meet some extraordinary people and to hone my photography skills. Now I have put down roots in Stapleton - Denver, CO and am soon to launch my own Family Lifestyle Photography business. Your course has definitely given me the courage to just charge ahead and go for it!
  • I am VERY impressed with this class! The structure of the class is well done. Each segment was thorough and backed up some knowledge from the previous segments. Kathy breaks everything down into understandable knowledge and also makes it very enjoyable to watch. I HIGHLY recommend this class if you're unsure about what to do to start your photography business. $3000 may sound like a lot of money, but you'll going to find yourself in a determined state to raise that money if you're REALLY passionate and serious about starting your photography business. Thank you, Kathy & Creativelive, for this class. I'm excited to get the ball rolling and build my photography business. <3