Set a Budget for Your Marketing Campaign
So I want to give an overview as to why I firmly believe these action these marketing shoots actually work because I know that it's a lot of fun but it's a lot of of time and effort and money, so in two thousand thirteen I left a photography conference and I left feeling uh, empty I left feeling stuck because what I was doing was when I was there, I was comparing myself and I was comparing my work to what other people were doing, and I also felt that they had more time, they had more energy and they had more money to do the things that they wanted, they hadn't they had extravagant clients, they had extravagant venues, they traveled to do what they loved. And so what I was thinking as a result was, after all these comparisons, what I felt was deflated and absolutely stuck and then what I decided to do that if I feel stuck and if you're at home and if you're in the studio audience and you feel stuck, let me tell you, the only way to get unstuck is not self pity is not dwelling with what ...
you don't have, it is actually getting out and doing the work, so they're at the airport I sat with jd, my business partner, my best friend and my husband, and they said, I need to do something to change and it was then that the floor of the mccarren airport in las vegas, where I said, I want to do three marketing campaigns and we budgeted two hundred and fifty dollars, for each of those chutes. So what I want to do if I had done styled shoots up until two thousand thirteen, but these three were different. I were walking through those differences as to why started off with change. But in order for me to change, I need to set goals for what? Those what that change was going to get me to. So I had to think to myself, doing these shoots for shooting sake was not enough. There were too many photographers who were shooting pretty things in pretty places and yet not fostering enough jewish enough momentum to push them forward. So what? My four goals then became I needed to be inspired because I felt stuck. I felt in a funk and the only way to get past that was a thing to see and create things that I thought were beautiful. It would push my business forward. Secondly, I needed visual alignment at two thousand, the year of two thousand thirteen, I was attracting higher and clients, and so I would be shooting a lot in ballrooms. Which is great because I was able to learn how to use my off camera flash, but the problem then became and it was a good problem to have, but it was a problem for me. Nevertheless, was that people were commissioned me consistently for ballroom, wedding, ballroom reading, baldwin running and I was suited for it, but it wasn't the thing that I really wanted to be shooting, so I created the shoots for visual re alignment. I also wanted to create for client attraction. Clients don't know what they want until they see it. So what I wanted to shoot more was outdoor, natural light, a reverend brides. Because I believe that if I show something that's really out here, it's not going to attract that really off kilter, bright it's going to move my current brides somewhere in the middle and that's what I wanted the chutes to do. Lastly, I wanted to get people talking because that's a marketing is marketing is simply people talking about who you are and what you do now ancillary I thought a bonus would be if I can use these marketing effects and get them featured somewhere else, that would be fantastic, but I did not list getting featured as a goal. Getting featured like on a magazine or in a block or something like that because if I had listed as a goal and then I did not get featured or I did not get published, I would have then thought that it was a failure and I needed these chutes to be free from any sort of expectation. Someone walking through the very first shoots, I want to bring it all back. I'm at the floor of the mccarren airport, we budget two hundred fifty dollars, and that was in february march of two thousand thirteen I produced the first shoot april of two thousand thirteen, so I want to give you an idea and a breakdown of how it came to fruition, because I think people see things online and then they make things up in their head like that must have been a big budget or she was so lucky or she works a great people let's talk about the nitty gritty. So it was an outdoor photo shoot. I collaborated with a wedding coordinator designer in orange county. We actually shot this in ojai, california, which is about an hour and a half from where I live, but it was a big open field that we were able to use without a permit now the the designer had made the bouquet and she said can you cover the cost of the bouquet? I said absolutely and with fifty dollars she said I made a tp for my kids and it's sitting in my garage with some sequence do you want it? I said yes, we will have a teepee issue so this is how the story of the strategy had started now the bride for this photo shoot I have a tendency and proclivity and a desire to actually work with real couples on my shoots because they have a chemistry that you cannot replicate so I found her by reaching out on social media and she wore her own wedding dress and he wore what he wore on his wedding so that didn't take anything and I was able to commission a makeup artist to come with me from orange county to ojai and she said that we would trade for our services but they also give her one hundred dollars because she was spending a lot of full day with me now then I went to michael's craft store and I bought sixty dollars of candles now they were on clearance in this big ben in this big bin and I thought I wasn't planning on having candles but you know what? They take up space so I bought with my budget allowed me which was sixty dollars I went to the gorgeous store and I bought smores, and that cost me about fifteen dollars. Now, the other decor pieces are things that I just grabbed from my house. I loaded my car with whatever I thought would work, and you also see a bottle of dom perignon, and before you guys think I'm all high brown fancy, it was a gift, and what you'll see later on to the shoot, you'll see the couple toasting with a bottle of champagne, and if you think I'm going to waste ah, bottle of dom p on a photo shoot, you were wrong because I bought a five dollar bottle of champagne, and so I took pictures of dom p and then poured the five dollars okay, so that's, kind of like how things are going and the total for this shoot, and it being two hundred and twenty five dollars. We shot in the afternoon and we enjoyed a ride home, and it felt good to create now an unexpected by product, but a welcome byproduct nevertheless, was that there was an editor from green wedding shoes blawg, one of the largest wedding blog's in the nation, and she decided to feature this as a wes anderson meets camping in a teepee day after photos. Now part of why I was extraordinarily excited for this is because gen campbell agree, wedding shoes targets organic. Ferial kind of free flowing brides, so if I can have my work featured on that outlet in addition to what I did, I blogged it. I put it on facebook, I put it on twitter, I was pushing that direction now this boat that was just the bonus that worked out for me and that ended up being wonderful marketing. The second shoot that I produced it was in april two thousand thirteen now part of what I wanted this you to do is I had set a personal goal. I want to shoot more in northern california. I love the bay area now. I didn't have portfolio pieces that put me in that in that geographic region, so in order to attractive thing that I want, I needed to have pieces that went out there. Now I also want to start shooting at the time, especially want to start shooting more allotment there is so much fun, they're a great way to kind of fill in the middle of the week, so I decided to put together a shoot in san francisco and styling as an elopement. Now we decided to have the photos done at san francisco city hall because there are a ton of allotments every day, so we wouldn't permit because they will just assume they just gotta lopes. So these are the things that I'm thinking about so let's walk through how things unfolded from a financial perspective now the florist donated the boot near and the bouquet as a trade for services. She said, if I can have the photos in a week I said absolutely and the bride's cousin was a makeup artists and hair artist and so she brought her along and said she'll do it for trade as well I said this is even getting better now she's wearing an untraditional white dress no, I got this dress by renting it online on rent the runway dot com now at the time they were having this new sails for new people who are renting items you get like a fifty percent off coupon so I used a fifty percent off coupon, so the rental and even the shipping was about forty dollars. Now, um, I flew to orange county are you student? I flew from orange county to san francisco and we were able to align during the perfect time to shoot. At that time of year the light was beautiful. I wanted to start shooting mohr of this less ballroom seemed to show what you want now the groom tyler total sweetheart when it comes time to styling him, he just had a naturally cool style and I just trusted him. I said, you know what where? What makes you feel good if you were getting a lochte? This is what I wanted to wear, so put on a hat he put on a bow tie and this is what resulted and it costed, I mean nothing in regards to what my budget was reflected, and I especially love that it was something different now, after shooting at city hall, we meandered over to a bar in the city for lifestyle photos. Now I did this, particularly because I wanted to attract clients who wanted something different on their wedding night. So I think that a couple on the wedding day, naturally, we'll say, hey, guys, peace out, we're going to a bar. No, I don't, but for a low moments, it could be something slightly different. And so we ended up here in natural light. We bought them, so I bought them some drinks. The bartender said, hey, use that corner. No problem. And we literally had no plans. We just found it and we walked in. Now we ended at the park at a park in san francisco because I wanted to ensure that they stayed true to the things that I wanted. Natural outdoor light now let's, go through the expenses for the shoot. I spent forty dollars to run the dress I spent thirty dollars on the drinks that they bought them in a bar because it's san francisco and you pay way too much for drinks but it was part of the cost I paid thirty dollars for transportation from the airport to the city and then the couple graciously drop me off at the airport so I caught a shuttle that was thirty dollars for transportation I made one hundred and forty seven dollars for my flight on southwest of the total for the shoot was two hundred and forty seven dollars now I have to walk you through was it worth it and my answer is unabashedly yes here's proof ah couple found the images from kelly and tyler's elopement in san francisco on google and she sent me inquiry and she said we're getting married we're from atlanta would you shoot I said absolutely so I met christine and paul that we met for the first time in person at city hall I documented their beautiful day we shot around city hall and I was already a custom and I felt confident in shooting and finding those nice, beautiful pockets of light because I had practice with no expectations then instead of walking to a bar the way that he did it kelly and tyler she said I really like how you did those lifestyle stuff we want to just create something our own I said perfect what do you want to go? And she said farmer's market in san francisco where foodies perfect she walked through, she made her own bouquet she just went through a florist grab some flowers they walked we enjoyed the a cheese and meat and drink to the stalls and I thought to myself, dang it I am so lucky to do with I love but better yet the third location they chose because they're avid travelers and were everything on the world they make sure to find the best donut shop where they are it is they're saying it is what they do so they said on our wedding day, we're going to find the best donut shop in san francisco and they went to the dynamo donut and the outskirts of the city and instead of having wedding cake the donuts and they enjoyed as husband and wife and well resulted where lifestyle photos from an allotment so you have to show the things you want. And in the same vein, heather and dan found christine and paul's images on google they flew from canada and I met them there it's a hall I shot to their wedding we ended up at a park in san francisco because I'm showing the things that they want to attract and also christina and george had a very small wedding and I don't know what men they had a small wedding at san francisco city hall and then I went and I shot their reception a very quite dinner with views of the golden gate bridge. So can I get an amen? Two hundred and forty seven dollars resulted in the thing that I wanted this is tangible thes air things that all sight back to images that were shown on the internet in the winter let on the internet now the last shoot now this happened in july of two thousand thirteen about four, five months after I said this is what I wanted to do after we had set those budgets know based on my experiences from the first to shoot, I thought this is my last you let's see if I can take things up another notch. So I collaborated with a great friend and orange county and she said, if you give me a larger budget, I'm going to maximize it I said, well, my entire budget is two hundred fifty dollars and an orange county she was like, okay, so that's where like flowers, right? And I'm like no it's where the whole thing and she was so good at really trying t make it work, so she told me I rented pillows for one hundred and twenty five dollars and my thought was like waited pillows, could we not make them for cheaper? But there was a a rental facility in orange county they rented wedding rentals exist nationwide so she just happened to find these pillows and she went to them for one hundred and twenty five dollars. Now the florist who the coordinator brought on she said I will give you the eye will make the bouquet for you but you have to cover my fees and her fees were sixty dollars for supplies now I went toe etc etc dot com because I knew that I wanted this to be bohemian style so I wanted a headpiece and I found this headpiece for about eighteen dollars twenty dollars on etc now the dress that was chosen for the shoot is actually not a wedding dress remotely it was a white dress from free people now the wedding coordinator the designer bought this for herself and she said let's use it for the shoot I said fantastic that was great now the groom who's dressed adorably we made an inspiration board on pinterest and I sent it to the bride and they said does his name is cody. Sabrina said this cody has anything like this he had all of this in his closet with the exception of suspenders so she went and bought him suspenders and she said, oh, I could get that for him no worries okay, so so far we're not paying anything for clothing now the stylist decided to make a boho inspired kite because, she said, if we can add different things to make the shoot more, lifestyle will have a lot more fun and there will be an opportunity for us to get featured that was her goal. My goal was I need stuff to shoot and I said here's, the money you do with it. So she went to michael's and she bought feathers and cloth and string for fifty dollars. What resulted was a feature on one hundred layer cake block, another very popular wedding block, and they entitled it a bohemian day after shoot by jazz and star. That was the bonus, but for me it was shooting things that I truly found inspiring, the chute told turned out in totality to be two hundred fifty five dollars, so these chutes were a byproduct of me trying to get unstuck. Now it was wanting to do something to change my current state on when I so often see from photographers is they don't like where they are and they really want to get to where they want to go, but they won't do anything to change the current state. That's what today's going to be about now? Oftentimes after I teach a course, the first thing I hear is well, that works. For you that works for people like you. And I don't think that there were two types of people. I think there is one type of person who makes two different decisions. I will do it. And I don't care what I have to do to do it. Or I will do it. And then anything. Anytime I meet resistance, I will stop that's who I believe there's. Only one type of person who makes to death decisions or their flight delays. Yes. Did the weather get compromised? Yes. Did models flake out? Yes. Then I feel very alone producing these and worried about what people think about me. Yes. Was I afraid to put something out? So def, some of the things that I had been producing. Yes, this is it in its reality. And I could tell you now in retrospect, it was worth every time minute, second money, dime dollar to produce. Now I'm going to walk you through how you could do it cause enough talking about me. I just want you to like I want to leave the ground. The groundwork it works. This really does work.