PHOTOGRAPHY BUSINESS ESSENTIALS
I get so many questions about my favorite tools and resources for my photography business so I thought I'd just list them all here. I'm continually adding to it so be sure to come back to this page every so often for updates :)
Bluehost is one of the most recommended hosting and domain name platforms around. Ask almost any blogger about that! Domains with Bluehost are very affordable!! At $2.95 you just can't beat it. Use my link to get that discounted rate. And that also includes a FREE Domain! If you are starting a blog, this is the most affordable and easiest way to go, especially for WordPress Blogs.
I've had a Photobiz website for years and I absolutely love this company! Their sites are completely mobile friendly and the ability to change a template or customize it myself anytime I want is huge for me! Drag & drop features make it so easy to use. It's a powerful tool and the people behind it are so innovative and cool. Plus, there is always a real person to talk to when I call. That is priceless to me when I need a little help.
In Person Sales
I don't think I would want to go through an in-person ordering session without using Fundy. Having a tool like this in the studio has created a highly level of professionalism and control of the sale. I have more than made my investment back from this product! I love creating wall galleries right there with our clients. The room view feature allows us to see what size images to place in our clients’ home. Talk about up-sales! No more "I want the big 8x10" ;) The real beauty of this tool to me is the album design feature. It is incredible and saves us so much time in post production!
OMGosh! Animoto has single handedly saved me hours upon hours in video production! I love creating our senior session slideshows with this product. It's so easy to use and creates some of the coolest effects you'll ever see! The hardest part is choosing the music because the selection is huge. That's a good problem to have though because trying to find good royalty-free music is difficult. I don't even question whether I will renew my subscription each year with Animoto. It's a given that it will be well used in the studio!
Online Galleries and Mobile Apps
Another account I've had for years. I do not do online sales, but I have had occasions where I needed to host images for clients. I have made exceptions for out of town clients as well and used ShootProof to conduct a Skype ordering appointment. But if you love online sales there is no better tool than ShootProof. We use it in the studio for creating our mobile apps. Seniors love these! It is also great for additional sales from family and friends after our ordering appointment with the client. We can set our own pricing for prints and they are shipped right to the client's door from the lab. That is crazy awesome to me!
I've tried several email service providers for blogging. But when it comes down to it, ConvertKit was built for bloggers and by a blogger. Try it for free here! It is a phenomenal tool for converting your readers into your subscribers. I love all of the automations and tagging features. The ability to re-send emails to people who have not opened them yet is super cool!
This tool is an absolute game changer. Everything changed when I implemented Tailwind into my Pinterest strategy. I'm not in front of my computer all day long anymore manually pinning. Hours upon hours of my life back! Automation is key when it comes to blogging and this, my friends, is the bomb. You can schedule all of your pins, including which boards to pin them to, how often and at specific times for your audience. Hello Pinterest traffic!!! Try Tailwind for free here.
Graphics & Stock Photos
Canva makes creating blog post, social media and Pinterest graphics so easy. I have several templates that make creating new ones very easy. This is a free tool, but there is a paid pro version, but it is not necessary.
I cannot speak highly enough of Jasmine Star and her genius behind Social Curator. She creates beautiful images no doubt, but her words steal my heart. She is such a creative writer and I have learned so much about purpose and engagement with social media through Jasmine. I highly recommend Social Curator for a boost to your social media platforms.
When it comes to setting goals according to your purpose or calling I believe there is no better product on the market than PowerSheets by Lara Casey. Her goal setting series this year was amazing and I am so glad to have gone through it. I'll be updating mine monthly and will post my goals progress throughout the year too :)
When it comes to keeping track of all the things in my head I only trust it to Trello. EVERYTHING is literally in one place! Each area of my life has a board. Within those boards are lists. And each thought / to do / item is a card on a list. Ahhhh! There are so many options to make life simpler too: due dates, calendar view, assigning cards, linking to Google Drive or Dropbox, search functionality and sooooo much more! It’s the #1 productivity tool I have ever used!
Client Management Software
Keeping track of clients and where we are at in our workflow is a breeze with Honeybook! We can schedule, keep track of project tasks and communicate back and forth with clients all in one place. It’s a photographer’s dream software for giving clients the absolutely best experience possible.
Social Media Management
Social Media is meant to be social and fun, right? Well, it can be again. The secret is in scheduling the bulk of your social media content ahead in batches so you can still engage and truly be social with your followers at other times. And SmarterQueue makes this possible! By setting up tons of content in different "queues", this tool auto generates your content based on when you tell it to and to different platforms like Twitter, LinkedIn, Google Plus, Facebook Pages and Facebook Groups. It has been a lifesaver for me!
Oh how I love this Instagram planning tool! As a photographer a pretty curated Instagram grid and feed is super important to me. I want my Instagram feed to tell a story and Planoly helps me do just that. I batch schedule my Instagram content at least a week in advance, sometimes two. Planoly also has the ability to schedule stories too. That's huge!