Where to Get Help


Marketing for Photographers


Lesson Info

Where to Get Help

The following presentation has been approved for photographers who feel like they're always flying solo are stranded on an island with tom hanks, volleyball wilson and have no idea where to get help. We're going to go into the next section after this by the way we're going to go into promotional planning and setting up a calendar which I think is important too, but there's so many photographers that just don't recognize all the resources that are out there and there are tons of them there tons of places you can go to get help and I want to hear I mean one of them is here right now in terms of creative live in this format but there are other places first of all, the internet is free everybody's gotta use it remember that it's free it's out there I'll sit and I'll I'll show dad dad was talking about selling his car so I went into I think it's kelley blue book dot com or blue book that calm whatever I went in and I said, well here's, what it's worth here's what you can probably get for it...

here's what you get if you trade it in and he looked at me like I was from outer space, how do you know that god my kid is so smart? He knows every car on the market what their value is the reality is that if you've got the internet there there's so many things that air free there right off the bat there are hundreds of speaker blog's just about every instructor teacher photographer who you admire probably has a blogger a website or someplace that they give help there was so much content we talked to matthew jordan smith a little while ago there was so much content in mathews site that every now and then he's okay if I lift an article lift the post from his blawg to run on my block because I know there aren't enough people that have seen it and he talks about lighting he talks about how he does a particular shoot all that information is out there I mentioned the photo resource hub dot com earlier creative live dot com here digital pro talk david a zisis site skips photo network I've got stuff out there all the time to help photo focus dot com is scott's behind the shutter dot com is sal matthew jordan smith dot com cantrow portrait dot com is bambi's clay blackmore dot com the ice society is gerry g onus my studio mentor dot com is bruce hudson and his son josh twit tv photo twit tv is catherine halls um and catholic catherine and leo do twit photo which is essentially it's like watching a news broadcast but the topic is almost always photo an imaging so all these places they're all free a few months ago, I got something from my studio mentor. It was fourteen points on things you could do and make money with senior photography, and it was a free. It just came because I subscribe to the newsletter and a lot of these bloggers. A lot of these locations have newsletter how much this is one for you guys. Now, how many different videos are out there? Download just ballpark on creative live right now. Workshops are videos, individual video let's lump them all together. I'm going back there to five thousand. I mean there's there's several hundred thousands of hours for sure. Thousands of hours. I mean, thirty times. Yeah, fifty workshop, sixty workshops, times thirty videos for each workshop. Yeah, okay. Thousand hundred, but their sixty, sixty workshops a year give or take? No, I think there's been a total of sixty, maybe in the last two and half years. Ok, probably so there's six I'm not sure I don't go to seo don't call his point is there's a lot of content there? It's there's tons of content. And if you missed it at the time and you didn't get the, you know, the seventy nine dollars, raid or the discounted rate on whatever that workshop was off the ria, the reality is that information is unbelievably valuable. And if you could go in and watch a workshop no matter what you paid for it. If it's from a photographer that's talking about a topic that you really need help with, then the amount of money you spend becomes it's insignificant. Do it get it. It changes your skill set and at a time let's say when business might be slow. You suddenly have a secret weapon because you just you just got inspired by watching matthew jordan smith, bambi cell who also were the other names in there. Lindsay lindsay adler's last week on social media there's all this content the bianchi sisters over mother's day weekend on things that you could do and sell and market yourself. That information is invaluable and photographers for whatever reason, everybody gets so short sighted in the value of what it is they're watching. This isn't like when we were kids and we watch tv and we watched cartoons all saturday morning. We got absolutely nothing out of it except the cartoons were great. This is about this is about building your business catherine does and leo, they do some incredible interviews then there's youtube everybody seems to forget about you too. You can type in any name on that list and then some, and you will find so much information on youtube there's a video syria's, tony core bells at the top of the list. Tony is absolutely king alighting there's a siri's of one, two, three and four light videos the tony did for pro photo. There are only two three minutes apiece. They've got so much content, there's a piece on their clay blackmore has a has an ad on there that was really like a promotional piece he was doing for a studio just watching that piece, you pick up ideas, kevin good boat has got a piece in there on the lighting notebook, I think I counted twenty five different on location lighting scenarios just in that one video, so every one of these people and this is this is only part of the industry that I happen to be thinking about when I was putting this slide together, there's another the same way. There are hundreds of speaker blog's out there, there are hundreds of iconic instructors and there's, some that aren't so iconic, sometimes just searching by photography and the topic you're trying to find. We'll bring up people that you might not have heard of their people out there, there's some wonderful videos, I'm going to say they're people that aren't even with us anymore, there's a syriza lighting videos that air unstoppable by dean collins, there's software cinema that has all of the all of the original stuff that dean started doing when he started software cinema, but this also dean's original lighting videos there's one episode that I can't link to on my block not long ago that was dean doing a lighting workshop on the road fifteen years ago doesn't matter that it's fifteen years old photography image ing lighting, the technique quality are timeless, so all these things are out there to help everybody. I absolutely believe that everybody's got to attend every convention and every local something happened to work. This is where this is where proof reading your slides is important didn't proof that one attend every conventional local events you possibly can don't get wrapped up in the fact of my god, I just spent forty nine dollars to go to a workshop last week and this one is ninety nine dollars and every single one of these is part of your education. I remember sitting in the back of the room at a seminar with nick vidro's, and he was the speaker great commercial photographer I mentioned yesterday out of out of kansas city and I was sitting with don blair, who at that time was over seventy it was probably done at that point was probably seventy four, seventy five years old and don was taking notes I look guys, what the hell you taking notes for because this guy's really good this is pre digital to this guy's unbelievable he's getting here's don who's who's who should be thinking about retirement and right down to the day before he died was thinking about what the next workshop was that he was going to do and there's don thinking about lighting and there's nick up on stage who's I don't know at that point thirty years dons jr and here's don blair the the king of poor traits one of the most well known respected portrait photographers in the world at that point and here he is taking notes so your education never stops smug my meetings go to every single one if you've got smart smug in your area if you don't go toe smugmug dot com and somewhere in there smuggling pro dot com somewhere in there you'll find the length to the to the meetings you get you get a map that's got dots all over it showing where they are get involved I mentioned earlier today the local guild the peopie a chapter meetings here you've got imaging yusa this year, yet the last big show is usually photo plus expo in new york you've got w p p I you've got all your state wins the state convention up here seattle wins you guys don't know wins illinois ok didn't know they had one um I don't I have no idea I don't know whether ohio has a very good one and kentucky has a has a great one that's actually just outside it's in covington just outside cincinnati which tends to draw from ohio in illinois s m p is very active in the seattle area s mp we talked about yesterday yeah s mp has has meetings they have workshops they bring in guest speakers they have programs that air locally and the cool thing is you get the network you get to meet other photographers and that's one of the things that everybody's got to do every time you go to one of these programs talk to the person to your right talk to the person to your left meet the person in front of you we've got a great saying never have never have lunch alone don't have dinner alone you go to one of these conventions take the time to meet somebody go to dinner with somebody haven't met before goto that makes that sounds really stupid you haven't met prior to yeah don't pick a random guy out of the casino is you're walking out of you know w people you've got skipped summer school coming up I love the fact that and jared you've been a part of it I know you've been on there there's there are one hundred eight people that started their own facebook page I didn't start it they started it it was a lot with with brett watkins and levi sam who put it together just having them in my network has enriched my life because they're active because they're doing things because they're making you think mohr because they're helping each other and here's this one facebook section of one hundred eight people that went to summer school last year and they're probably a few more that didn't go that have trickled in, but the cool thing is everybody helps each other somebody puts a question up there and says, does anybody know what I ought to be buying for the following and I need this strobe I'm blown away by the fact within a minute there's always one person that answers that's a very cool thing it's about networking then you've got all the road shows and then you've got after dark, which is another educational element, and dave joanie in and his crew and what they do with their road shows and after dark education there's there's so much out there, which leads me to thinking about sam putsch and you can do they're they're so many programs to look at and choose from and I don't I mean, I'm hitting the tip of the iceberg here, how many of you have seen? I mean, they're only five you here have you guys seen the videographer? Videographers births is photographer spoof okay it's classic it's actually up right now on photo resource hub if you scroll down you might have to go to a second page the site just started so it's still work in progress and will be organizing it differently but it's a great thing to watch it's hysterical and it's kind of a spoof on every movie scene from braveheart on that ties in you know the battle between photographers and videographers and it's even more fun when you spot people that you know photo resource hub I mentioned earlier today it's a new site we launched but there are three tweet handles that relate to it and feed it at p r h calendar five times a day at least there are tweets that go out on different events that air coming up just being on that calendar is going to get you updated on tweets off programs all the creative life programs get tweeted there and have been from the beginning at photo rez hub is tweet is tweeted out there with more information and then my tweet which is that skip colon is that's my stream and same thing again keeping you guys plugged in with events going on another one that just launched forty eight hours ago that's kind of fun scott born and I spent two years on doing podcasts and blogged posts and a couple of life programs as well on the going pro project we just launched the complete podcasts of going pro almost complete their missing we're missing to their twenty eight hours of podcasts, including the guest we had on and we had guests on like tamerlan key matthew uh, michael coursen tino, joe brady from the mac group marathon press there were a lot of different guests that were involved in some of those those podcast they all run typically anywhere from seventeen to twenty five minutes you go to going pro two thousand twelve dot com we put those all together so they're going to be available on a disk and they're out there to pre publishing price of twenty eight, ninety five, twenty nine, eighty five whatever it is, but it's twenty eight hours of help there's all this support out there resource mag online I mentioned the other day resource mag online dot com this new feature I love this so much content on that website and this new feature from adam sherwin, who is at adam sure win on twitter and at resource mag is the twitter handle for a resource magazine ask a geek he's got great stuff he's doing a piece right now because last night sherry was talking about her first camera and how she got into photography and he's doing a piece on there that you just put up published last week on getting photographers to share their stories of how they get started and he's got photographers that have posted pictures of their first cameras I'm hoping any tap is going to do one but he's that he's actually got the receipt from his first hasselblad that only cost him I believe six hundred dollars so there's all these places that you can get help that people forget about and don't take advantage of and just to wrap this section up a little bit on those days when you just need help see that's not you know what I think this happened when we changed for men on my slides because I know I didn't miss that think about some things that you need to do when you just need it just need it just need help you need a break so you got a day and it's just crappy think about the different things that you can do and should do and right off the bat I always rhyme people this doesn't might not seem like it ties in directly with anything I'm talking about but get the sleep you need absolutely if your body doesn't get enough sleep you could be a six hour guy you could be an eight hour guy if you miss it by an hour it's like a bank account if you miss it by an hour seven days in a row, then you've overdrawing your account by one night's sleep get the sleep you need music we've got music on all the time in the house I got music on I need music in the background and a lot of times when I find myself getting stressed I realized I forgot to put the music on get time with friends we get so wrapped up in our business that we really screw up a lot of relationships we get so wrapped up we're so buried in working that you forget that take time with friends your spouse with family you've got to walk away from it look at the top magazine my favorites are obviously range finder resource but read the magazines go look at photo books look at non photo books michael asked before about different words and how were you able to tie things in together and get new ideas on how to describe things look at the magazines to get ideas on how they describe different things visit workbook dot com I hope it's still up is this I know black book dot com I don't think is a business anymore but work work dot com look at other work exercise walk every morning attend the local workshop that we talked about spend some time on you too in fact a great thing on youtube just look up all your favorite movies look for those funny moments I mean I am I'll admit that I'm that I'm like a fourteen year old at heart I go after the knife fight and butch cassidy and the sundance kid where paul newman kicks the guy between the legs because there are no rules on the night knife fight, you have to watch it to see it to enjoy it or it's the being seen from blazing saddles I mean that whatever it is that just makes you laugh going to youtube there's nothing wrong with it don't be afraid to just step away from the business for a little while, get out and take a walk it out and take a drive get out of the office for the day when you're feeling stressed you've got to take a break being yourself up more to try and get to a certain point and finally resolve what that goddamn it I'm going to write that bio today if it kills may well, it really will if you've got that kind of attitude, you're not relaxed. Watch a webinar watch a workshop here we are we're right here now online education it is very best with a ton of stuff to be able to watch one of the things that love is just take your camera out and just go shoot go photograph the things that got you interested in the first place I found a great quote that really ties in that I really like a lot from steve jobs your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life don't be trapped by dogma which is living with the results of other people's thinking don't let the noise of other's opinions drown out your own inner voice most important have the courage to follow your heart and intuition they somehow already know what you truly want to become everything else is secondary I mean that's just brilliant pick up steve's jaws steve jobs book and read it what what a great leader inventor inspiration you know we lost but that's the cool thing because his philosophy and his thoughts and his quotes live on for all of us I won't take some questions because our last section we're going to lay out a promotional calendar so even though it might sound like I'm winding down and all skip is doing the thing about, you know, walk away from the business and relax once in a while and get focused but we've got a great section coming up but this is this is the great way to lead into your promotional calendar because you have got to plan your work out if you don't do a promotional calendar than you might as well be carrying around that battery pack I had yesterday, they will take some questions absolutely so many questions the's questions go all the way back to the pricing section we could go back the pricing because I don't think we really got a chance to ask questions after that all right starting off with susie souls question who says I work from home and I have a hard time selling prints and campuses two clients due to not being able to show them the value face to face is there any way to work around selling prints and albums from a home office where clients don't regularly come in? Well one I would have a stash of prince in some really nice portfolio cases so that they have value or you've got them wrapped in those those really nice velvet blanket packs that you sometimes see find pieces of art packed in so that you could take some to the client to see number two I would follow what I call the helen nancy rule she's got a lot of images framed in a local restaurant she lives outside detroit we talked about it yesterday uh look for look for some local place that will allow you to decorate for them and have your images up so that people could see him so you can say well, listen if you just go over to you know ruess chris on main street you'll see all of my image is hanging in the lobby if you're really at that point I mean ideally you really want to have the images there you could also do what michelle selling tunnel does michelle selling tano visits them at their home and actually carries it out to the very last step where when her prints are delivered michelle will come in and hang the print she'll put the nail in the hook in the wall and she will work with the client on okay, look, you've got this spot right over here next to the tv. Wouldn't it be nice to do a twenty by thirty canvas? And while look at that I see your taste is kind of contemporary. Let me give you some ideas on frames so she's actually taken photography the level of she will help the client actually be the interior too shall be the interior decorator. She'll come in and actually make suggestions and show them frames and take them through it because the reality is if somebody just orders a print it's going to sit there if you provide them with the frame and the idea and where it's gonna hang, you've got the ability to sell bigger prints and more of them. So those are things that I would do just because you work out of your home. Um, well, I'll give you a good example. Bambi studio is in her home. She's never be client coming to her home. She has an amazing room that's that's stunning that's her preview room that she's decorated in a way that that clients feel comfortable but she's out showing work all the time if you go to her studio because she does have a studio, I keep forgetting that I'm dating myself here and putting it back in her home because she has stuff in her home. She also does have her studio, which I forgot about she's got all the hallways now, and she's got a lot of places that she can decorate, so I apologize for forgetting that, but you just have to be able to show prince to people, so take them to them and have them displayed in a way that has value don't just pull a print out of your trunk and carried in having been a beautiful portfolio case that you can go in and nine show, how would you recommend approaching a small cafe owner or like a I know quite a few ted to artists also that say he I have some photographs that would look cool in your establishment like what's the other than yeah was the payoff for them what's the benefit for them to show right off the bat? The payoff for them is you're going to help them decorate, make their make their business look better, right? I know again that's assuming that your photographs are all while prints, so you don't want to show them you don't want anybody which years would be, but you don't want anybody you don't want to go in and show anybody mediocre prints. I would definitely always have at least two prints that were already framed. I would do a little research to go in there first if you're going into a well, you talked about a tattoo parlor, but wherever you were going, if you're going in and you're talking about having prince there, do some research first and pay attention to what the style is what's the decor so that you can have a print framed and you could be showing them an idea that already fits with their taste. So don't go in with a you know, if you're looking at a an italian restaurant that's very ornate, that has a lot of gilded gold frames and and the squiggly I don't know what they call them, you know, the style of the frames that that what you call him that renaissance? Look, I guess so you've got some frames you wouldn't go in there with some really contemporary, you know, really thin all metal frames because it's not going to fit with the decor. So do your research first so that you know what they're into have a couple of images already framed offer to do it, and in exchange for your decorating, I had no charge, they're going to put out your business cards. And that's part of that that's part of the exchange and they get images to decorate restaurants it's a it's a great one there's a photographer in south jersey by the name of jim chamberlain who years ago got several french restaurants to help fund a trip of his to france this is all pre digital now do a trip to france and he did some of the most amazing stunning panoramic x and he was he was stitching negatives together and doing some incredible things with these monet looking fine art pieces for their restaurants tell there's what's in it for them is is making their place look better than it deserves to look sometimes all right so I have a question from I am sham what advice do you have? What advice do you have for someone who is already made the mistake of underpricing that's from jackson mississippi you got to re launch yourself so if you're under pricing and he's just been so low for so long then you first have to look at your image in the marketplace you need to elevate that image it might mean that you want a new look to your website it might mean that you've got to do some press releases and things that that talk about changes you might need to show that you're diversifying now and you're bringing in another segment of the market let's see what else would I do to relaunch you want my wantto identify some partners within the community so you can start to cross promote with somebody else if your wedding photographer than I would go meet the florist and the travel agent and the tuck shop in the limo driver maybe you do a networking luncheon like dawn shields has been doing and you bring everybody in within that category so that you guys can talk more about the business and you start to build those relationships then you start to need you need to start to look at your pricing if you priced yourself too low then you need to change your packages you need to change some of your descriptions maybe if your wedding photographer you're going to add on another hour two and you're going to change your coverage so you're giving added value but at the same time you're elevating the price point um I can't think of what else I missed right now because it's that's great thank you there those are some of the things you could do thank you. Okay. Question from hank henge in what do you think of giving away work for free to get other work later for starting photographer this half of me says oh for god's sakes do it it's called planting the seed this side of me says oh, I'll be careful because everybody likes to get work for free and everybody talks a good game there is a great story, and I might miss some of the detail here, but you'll understand the point. Clay blackmore had a caterer ask him for a if he could if he could get some of the video footage that clay shot of a particular wedding that the caterer had done, and clay just said, I'm just going to give it to him. It wasn't that big a deal, he gave it to him. Either he gave it to ridiculously cheaper, gave it to him free, and the caterer came back two or three months later and referred one of the biggest weddings or events that played, photographed and then wanted him to come back again and do a full company video so I might have some of my fax and they're wrong. But there, times when it's a really good payoff the other times when you need to be careful. Now, if you look at what bambi talked about, she did everybody's, facebook free a charge sheet, everybody's, facebook had shot that attended that changes salon program, the whole gallery, that event in the community, she did him for free and just get him for everybody her pay back on that eventually will be outrageous because every single person that attended that night at this high end salon event. Met her had their picture taken by her saw her work so that's when there's a good payoff so I would just be careful that that that's my only advice some things are going to feel right and you're going to feel really good and other times you're going to feel taken advantage of sometimes you might get burned chalk it up is a tax loss and get over it don't get yourself worked up to the point that you wind up in therapy for a year get a base ah a question from twitter who says I'm a photographer but I've never gone to college for photography does that mean I should charge less even though my work is great? Absolutely not this is about this is about your self esteem and your value now I won't deny for a second that if you can get a formal education especially in photography it's going to help you because when you're learning on your own and on the job you're learning from your mistakes or hopefully a college education is goingto change things a little differently. But I can tell you right now and I won't name them because they might be embarrassed. But if I gave you that top ten photographers in the united states today that we all admire the most, I'm willing to bet that six of them don't have the formal degree now it doesn't mean they haven't taken thousands of hours of workshops of programs of watching things like creative life but the formal education in itself isn't important. It's what you do with it? I mean, we know plenty of people that have got the full education and they're morons because they don't have common sense. Just the fact that they were able to get a degree by itself doesn't mean that they had the passion and the skill set to be a terrific photographer because they may not have any business sense, they may be spending it faster than they can make it. They may have extended themselves and do products. They don't really even need to buy it. All right, let's, ask a couple more questions here trying to find a good one. There are so many, um oh, michael, this sort of related to him. Whether we went very fast, I would have spotted you. They're only five of you here. What was it like? Unbelievable. Okay, well, this sort of relates to the cafe theme, but bambi mentioned having her fine art line. And I think a lot of us photographers got into it originally, either with art, photography or fine art photography that we wanted to be artists. And so how do you do that without diluting your money making part and potentially make some money from your fine? Our line so how do you get into the fine arts side? Yeah even is doubling. Yeah. Oh, this is one of those that I'm only half qualified to talk about and if there is think of a lot of photographers that would do so much better in that and answering it from my perspective what I've seen successful a lot of these photographers we'll work to align themselves with the local gallery we'll take images in and be able to show their portfolio to a gallery there number of gallery type sites where you can sell work online that helps you get established I'm not talking about like stock photo I'm talking about formal gallery I don't I don't know the names of them, but if you google on site galleries, does that sound right? You would probably find one one of you google over there see what comes up so if you google if you goto galleries online or online galleries, that might give you another idea on how to be able to show your work um getting your work out there and being able to show it in different locations and communities before you're really trying to sell it makes sense I know that everybody they know that's ever had work up in a restaurant or some kind of establishment like I was talking about with helen yancey typically has prices on their images eso that starts to establish value but I have to get back to you on that I don't have I don't have a good answer on how one does break into getting your work out there and letting people know that it's for fine art I know that that image above bambi's head in her video is part of a siri's of horses she did on icelandic courses and I know she one of them recently sold for somewhere around twenty five hundred dollars it's about how she got it out there and how that happened that's the part of the story that that isn't in my expertise yet well it will be by the time I call you back with that answer on monday but so this is a question from paul sorna and it likely comes back into a lot of what we're talking about but paul asks how would I deal with clients that judge me for being a young photographer show work that suggests that you have more experience than a young photographer I mean there is a point where when your brand new you don't have the experience you don't have the depth the truth is that doesn't mean that you can charge exactly the same thing that bambi cantrell can charge the denis reggie can charge the job using khun charge because they do have the experience so there is a gap there but I think the biggest thing that happens and this goes back to that block post I had last week of scott borns on photography being the great equalizer when you have an image that absolutely just knock their socks off doesn't matter doesn't matter what your background is doesn't matter who you are doesn't matter how tall how short you are doesn't matter how experienced you are the reality is that you got the shot now getting that one shot is one thing it's really important to be have to have consistency in your quality well there's a question here from monica olsen in texas he would like to know if you know if some of the best image contests and is there a list we confined if we're new to this and don't know where to start o right off the bat I would go to um google the site range finder magazine nielsen does a contest almost monthly um they are the owners of range finder a go to photo district news because pgn publishes a number of different contests if you google photo contests you will find all kinds of contests all over the place because there are also private companies that do photographic contest sometimes it's in exchange for usage rights where they're actually looking for images uh both range finder and people have done cover contests with your mat with your image being featured on the cover of an upcoming issue and that's out there then there are contests a lot of times in the community you might is a professional photographer. You might want to suggest the contest and get together with a few local businesses in your community and sponsor a contest just to be able to get involved at a different level. Where you're going to be the expert and you're going to be one of the judges in a contest. Is there a specific place for all the contests in the world? I honestly don't know. But those are all sources that will come up with contest.

Class Description

You know how to focus your camera, NOW focus your business. Professional photographers today have greater marketing capabilities and reach than at any time in the history of photography, but a winning strategy has to be aligned across all aspects of your business.

Skip Cohen will take you through a complete analysis of your business and give you tools for growth. Skip will focus on the art of a successful website, developing PR campaigns, planning your promotional calendar, networking, branding and time management, just to name a few.