April 20, 2020

How to Build Your Photography Business While Self Distancing

Hi everyone! We’re over a month now into self isolating (if you’re in the West coast, like I am). It has been a ride, hasn’t it? Today I’m sharing tips on how to build your photography business while self distancing.

Before I start, the first thing I want you to know is that I want you to be very gentle on yourself right now. If you’re wearing sweatpants all day, your mind is in a fog, and you feel paralyzed and unproductive, that is completely normal for what we are going through. It’s been a massive change in your life and in our society, and going through it can be very stressful! So if you haven’t spent much time working on your business, don’t stress about it. You are doing the best you can, and self care is most important.

That being said, if you are feeling up to it, now is a fantastic time to work on your photography business. Here are a few simple ideas of how you can work on your photography business right now!

Work on Your Website

  • Perform a website review. Do the images represent your current skill? Are the images well sequenced? Update your portfolios with recent work, and remove any images that aren’t serving you well.
  • Does your website load quickly? Is your website easy to navigate? As an experiment, have a family member or friend (who you’re self isolating with, of course) peruse through your website. Sit next to them and pay attention to where they get confused. Make sure they can find the important information (contact, portfolio, about page) without needing prompts from you.
  • Does your website speak to your target audience? First, identify who your target audience is. If you’re a commercial photographer, check out the websites of brands you’d love to work with. How is their branding? What is their website flow like? Consider aligning your website more with the dream clients you’d like to attract.
  • Refine your About page. This is one of the most visited pages on your site. Make sure the content is genuine and is geared toward your ideal client.
  • Does your website need a face lift? If you’re unhappy with your website, check out other options. My favorite website provider is Flothemes in conjunction with WordPress. Check out their website themes here.

Research + Learn

  • Do some research on your ideal clients. If there are brands you’d like to work with, research their business. Study their website and social media channels. Study their branding, and their artistic voice. Research their business on LinkedIn – this is where you can learn more about the people who work there, and the responsibilities they have.
  • Get to know your market on social media. Genuinely engage with accounts and build connections.
  • Research who your competitors are. Explore how their offers differ from yours. Use this to further define your own uniqueness in the market.
  • Refine your workflows. How can you simplify and streamline your client experience and your own workflow?

Increase Your Knowledge + Skill of Photography

  • Learn more about your industry. The history of photography is rich and fascinating. There are countless photographers throughout history whose work is valuable to study.
  • Read books about art and photography. I have some good recommendations here.

Social Media

  • Identify your weak spots in your marketing on social media. What platforms have you not utilized? Learn how you can better use them with online trainings and tools.
  • Stay active on social media. Create new work and post it. Share behind the scenes of your creative process, and of the work you’re creating.
  • Take this time to build connections on social media.
  • Check out my free social media guides for commercial photographers in my free resource library.

Work on Personal Projects

  • It feels limiting right now, but that just means now is the time to push yourself. Be creative in what you can work on.
  • Try something you’ve never done before! Experiment with video, try a new lighting technique. Just get out your camera, get in your studio if you have one, and play. You’ll be surprised what you come up with! Having constraints and limited resources can yield creative, exciting results.

Self Care

  • Make sure you are still connecting with others. Talk with family and friends over Zoom or chat or a phone call.
  • Incorporate movement into your day. It doesn’t have to be a vigorous workout (although that can feel great and lift your mood, too!). It can be as simple as going on a walk or stretching.
  • Have realistic expectations. Be genuine with yourself about what you can accomplish each day. Distractions and needing down time are normal and to be expected.
  • Eat your fruits and veggies, and take your vitamins! Your body and mind need nutrients to feel good.

I hope these suggestions gave you some ideas in how to build your photography business while self distancing. Hang in there! We’re going to get through this. The economy will recover – now is the time to make sure you’re ready for it.

how to build your photography business while self distancing