How to Launch a Photography Business


How to Launch a Photography Business


Lesson Info

Luxury vs Consumer Products & Experiences

Luxury versus consumer products and experiences. Gosh, I can talk about this stuff forever. I love it. This is an exercise we're actually gonna do. Right now. We're gonna mind map a luxury versus consumer experience, and what we're gonna do is you're gonna do it while looking at this first. I want you to look at these two images and I want you to map out luxury versus consumer as your central branch, central topic, and you're gonna branch out, and give me different words and different things that apply to each of these different buying experiences. Right now, let me hear it. Just words. Clutter. Cluttered on the left. Elegant. Elegant on the right? Functional on the left. Functional on the left. What? One versus many. One versus many, that's a great one. Focused on the right. More what? Boring, yes. Minimalist on the right side. Maybe missing functionality and utility? On the right side, maybe missing functionality or utility? Yeah the side looks very functional, ...

there's places to sit, there's options. Yes. Joe. Exclusivity on the right. Exclusivity on the right. They have one person wait on you. Process versus experience. We're getting a lot of good stuff, so let me get the mic. We're getting more than one word. I was expecting like one word from each of you. We're getting, okay, so where's the mic. Grab the mics. Jason. On the left, I see a process and on the right I see an experience. Very interesting. Anybody else? Let's pass the mic over. I see clear quality versus quantity. Quality versus quantity. Okay. Cool, let's do one more. I want you to write that down on your paper, by the way, as you guys are defining these two things out. And now let's go to this one. Grab the mic when you have something to say. Define out these two different experiences. More organized. More organized on the left side versus the right side? Quality versus quantity on the right. Quality versus quantity on the right. More expensive on the left. That's an interesting assumption, 'cause you wouldn't know that. But you feel that, right? Presentation on the left. Versus just whatever on the right. I see a lot of uniformity in the as opposed to kind of chaos and options but very chaotic. Yes. Julie? It's more difficult to access the products. It gives you more want, I guess? Isn't that kind of interesting? Like they place it in ways that you kind of need someone to help you a little bit, right? Massive on the right versus exclusive, maybe? What was that? Massive versus exclusive? Yeah, like massive, like broad market versus exclusivity on the left. Very good. I think you guys have this. Lee, go ahead. Even the walkways are designed differently, you've got like a freeway on the right and then you've gotta get in and you sit down or, not sit, but. Okay, so this is very interesting that you guys have identified all this and you're spot on, okay? I want you to put that into your mind map. So you've got this central topic of luxury versus consumer. I want you to branch left to consumer, branch right to luxury. And I want to you define out all the words that you just put in each of those categories. There's the words that you guys really stated already. So in a luxury versus consumer good. On the consumer side, this is, by the way, a Honda dealership. We can't show logos obviously, but this is need over want. We all need cars, right? We need to get from one place to the next. That's how the showroom is kind of set up. This is a consumer product. These fulfill needs. Many product choices. We maximize, there's a product for everybody. Right? We got something for all of you. You want something small? Put you in a Civic. Want a big van? Got that too. We got it all. Maximizing usage of space. Well we gotta have a lot of space to be able to present all the different options that we have to give you. Products become commodities. Meaning brand perception aside, would a Honda or a Toyota or a Hyundai all fulfill the same need? Yeah and in fact, Honda and Toyota, in terms of brand and quality, I know all of us have preferences, but outside those preferences, it's the exact same product in terms of what it can do, in terms of its niceness and everything, right? These are commodities. The features are prevalent. Right, they're displayed everywhere. What does it come with? What is the engine size? Leather? Genuine leather? Patent leather? I don't think anybody puts patent leather in their car, that'd be weird. You'd have like a, like get in and there's a purse-type seat. This is all want over need. This is a Bentley dealership. Does anybody here need a Bentley? No. You could say I need a car, but you can't say I need a Bentley. I really gotta have a, well if you sat in them, they're pretty freaking awesome. Seriously, though, they have this fur under your feet. You're sitting in like, your shoes are on like this ridiculous, like $10,000 fur. Which if you take your shoes off, oh, it's so good. I'm just saying. But there's no way I need that. I want it. Few products and choices. Minimalistic open spacing. Do you not think that here the product is presented as a piece of art versus here the product that fills a need. It's a commodity, correct? Experience values trump, experience and value trumps the features. Prices are concealed. Now here's the interesting part. Where does photography fit? The service that you're offering, because this goes to your question. Anybody. Like, I wanna hear what your thoughts are. Is photography a consumer product or is it a luxury product? (students talking) Let's hear it. I consider it more of an investment, than. Okay, an investment in which side? Uh, to the consumer, 'cause they're, they're paying you to do this spectacular job. But a luxury consumer or a commodity consumer? That, that's where I struggle with that market. Because you have the photographers that that are in your area that charge $ and give you everything and you're out, you know, they kind of under-price you, and you're, you don't fit in that market, but then, it's kind of like, well, do I just stick with my pricing or do I raise it? Well, let me get to this. You are, okay, let's think of it this way. 15 years ago, you could have said photography was a commodity and a luxury. I'm gonna say that today you can't. Today photography, as a business, is a luxury. Why? Don, right? Yes. 'Cause everyone can take pictures. You are abso-freaking-lutely correct. Your, what we've talked about, your phones, the fact that everybody has Rebels, every single one of these inventions which we call the democratization of production, has taken this entire industry's commodity and destroyed it. It's gone. If you wanted to, this is why K-Mart photos. They're all getting rid of their photo stuff. Right? Everybody can do that stuff at home now. You don't need like your pictures on your iPhone are good enough. You don't need someone kind of not really learned photographer in a studio taking crappy pictures of your family for $20. That's gone. What's left is photography as a luxury. So here's the next question that I hope makes you stop and think for a second. Why would a consumer brand and a consumer business model fit your luxury product? And don't tell me that you don't offer a luxury product. If you're a pet photographer, I can take good pet photos with my phone. Boudoir? I stand in the mirror all the time naked and I just do that, like, I just go. I really don't. Julie, don't look at me that way. It's okay. But seriously, how would it fit? It doesn't. And that means that this whole mindset of the feature sell, which is what everybody started doing, is gone. When we get to sales, I'm gonna blow you out of the water. Why are we feature selling a product that has nothing to do with features? Would you walk into a Bentley dealership? This, this is some basic, let's think just on this topic for one second. Who in their right minds would go into this place and be like, are the seats genuine leather? Is, does that sound ridiculous? Um, what's the mileage on that car? Like, does it get good gas mileage? You're laughing 'cause it's a ridiculous thought. Because all of us know that you go into this place to buy an experience. You know that if you're paying 300, 400, $500,000 for a car, they damn well better be using genuine leather and have actual Rolex faces for all the timepieces in the car. And they're gonna do all the things necessary to make it so you never have to ask those kinds of questions. It would be silly, likewise, to go into a Luis Vuitton store. This is Luis Vuitton on the left side. Girls, how many of you would go into a Luis Vuitton store and ask the price? That's an embarrassing question to ask, isn't it? What would you do instead? I really love this one. Let me look at this one real quick. And you pull it down, and you kinda like, flip it around a little bit, and like, there's a tag, and you're just like, ding, oh, I saw it, okay, and then you kinda put it back. Tell me that's not how you do it. Like as inconspicuous as possible. Why is that? And yet, people will come into your business and hound you on your price constantly. Do you think it's because you're prepping them to do that? Absolutely. I'm gonna teach you how to get them away from it, and a part of it is gonna come from the presentation of your product. Understanding first and foremost that photography is not a commodity. It's a luxury.

Class Description

The content and opinions expressed in this course are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact your attorney to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem

Build a business and get people to spend money on your photography. Award-winning photographer and co-founder of Lin and Jirsa Photography Pye Jirsa will walk you through the first 12 weeks of building your business. With his relatable and actionable teaching style, he’ll explain how to define your product as a photographer and determine where it fits into a consumer mindset. You’ll learn the steps to creating a brand, pricing yourself confidently, sales techniques, and basic marketing practices. This class covers everything you’ll need if you’re considering photography as a job, including:

  • Where to position yourself in the market
  • Branding your business to attract your ideal client
  • Pricing and basic financing
  • Creating a business plan
  • Setting up a portfolio
  • How to get your first customer in the door
  • Getting leads on new clients
  • Understanding sales
  • The psychology of a buyer

Pye has built multiple successful businesses from the ground up and this course includes your 12 week road map to launching your business.


1Class Introduction
2Common Myths & Unknown Truths
3The Road Ahead
4Find Your Passion
5The Lin & Jirsa Journey
6Part-time, Full-time, Employed, Partners?
7Stop Wasting Time & Money
8Your 12 Week Roadmap
9Great Plans Still Fail
10Strategy Vs. Planning
11Mind Mapping
12Select a Focus
13Competitor Research
14S.W.O.T. Analysis
15Strategy & Long Term Goals
16Values, Vision & Mission
17Effectively Managing Your Time
18Artistic Development
19Create Your Plan
20What's Your Product
21Luxury vs Consumer Products & Experiences
22Quick Break for Econ 101
23Your Target Market & Brand Message
24What's in a Name
25Your Client 'Why'
26Crafting the Why Experience
27Document the Client Experience
28Business Administration Basics
29Book Keeping Management
30Create the Logo & Branding
31Portfolio Design
32Design Your Services & Packages
33Pricing Fears & Myths
34Three Pricing Methods
35Package Pricing Psychology & Design
36Psychology of Numbers
37Pricing Q&A
38Grass Roots Marketing
39The Empty Party
40Friends & Family Test Shoots
41Join Groups
42Second Shooting Etiquette
43The Listing & Classified Hustle
44Make Instagram Simple
45Your Automated Pinterest Plan
46Facebook Because You Must
47Giveaway & Styled Shoots
48Content Marketing & SEO
49The Monster: SEO
50Selecting Your Keywords
51Testing Your Keywords
52Grouping Main & Niche Goals
53Your Content Road Map
54Content Marketing Q&A
55Inspiration to Keep Working
56How to Craft Your Content
57Internal Linking Basics
58Back Link Building Basics
59Link Value Factos
60Measuring Link Value
61Link Building Strategy & Plan
62Link Building Plan: Vendors & Guest Writing
63Link Building Plan: Features, Directories, Comments
64Link Building: Shortcuts & One Simple Tool
65What is Sales? Show Me!
66Your First Massive Failure
67The Sales Process
68Your Second Massive Failure
69Understand Buyer Psychology
70Step 0: Building Rapport & Trust
71Step 1: Identify Need or Want
72Cognitive Dissonance
73Steps 2 & 3: Value Proposition & The Solution
74Step 4 : Close, Make the Ask
75Step 5: Follow Up & Resolve Concerns
76Family Photography Hot Seat
77Business Example Hot Seat
78Boudoir Photography Hot Seat
79The Best Sales Person
80Your Mindset, Vibrations & Frequency
81Always Positive, Always Affirming
82The Second Money & Dual Process
83Chumming the Price Waters
84Creating Want or Scarcity
85Timeless Advice on Being Likable
86Selling Over The Phone
87Forbidden Words in Sales