How my competitors increased my sales and I increased theirs

I hear it all the time and you probably have too - the photographer friend complaining their competitor is copying their style, stealing their clients, using the same presets … and charging way less!

It is easy to slip into this negative way of thinking.

In fact I started my business because of the negativity and downright rudeness another photographer showed me, but that’s a story for another day.

Back to embracing your competition to increase your sales.

When I started my photography business, I was living in a new city and didn’t have many contacts. So I reached out to other local photographers, who I felt had a similar style (and coolness factor lol).

I emailed them, introduced myself, complimented their work and asked if they would be interested in starting a referral network.


It worked like this:

If I was unable to photograph a certain client (see below for list of possible reasons), I would refer that client to the other photographer. And the other photographer would do the same for me.

I reached out to first 2 then later 3 other photographers and they all said YES!

Since starting this referral network, my annual sales increased by approximately 20%.

“You must never think for a moment that the supply is limited….Never get afraid that you will lose what you want because some other person “beats you to it”. That cannot possibly happen; you are not seeking anything that is possessed by anybody else” – Wallace D. Wattles

The more you give the more you will receive.

Have you used your competition to advance your business? We would love to know how! Take a second and leave us a comment on this article.

 

REASONS TO REFER CLIENTS TO OTHER PHOTOGRAPHERS:

    1.    you are already booked on that date  (i.e. weddings, events, holiday sessions, too busy)
    2.    you don’t do that type of photography (i.e. newborns, real estate)
    3.    you feel the client would be better suited to a different photographer (i.e. personality clash, wrong style)


ADVANTAGES:

    1.    your competitor’s marketing efforts give you clients
    2.    your reputation and visibility is increased when other reputable photographers recommend you
    3.    you make new friends (and you never know when you might need help i.e. you are sick and cannot show up for a scheduled photoshoot).

If you found this tip helpful, please share it!

Until next month,

Heike

Like this content? Get tips served up to your inbox every month!

Name *
Name

Mentoring

I am honoured, humbled and excited to have been chosen by my fellow photographers to be one of the few mentors for the modern women’s portraiture group formed by the amazing Sue Bryce! This international group of talented photographers has 15,000 members and is growing daily! To even be considered for this role is a great honour and a privilege - thank you! Thanks Lori Patrick for organizing and making this group incredible! #gratitude

heike delmore photography expert mentor

7 (FREE) STEPS TO CREATING BUZZ & MOMENTUM

I'm excited to announce that my new website dedicated to helping photographers build a profitable business you will love is now online! All of the new articles posted here will now link to the new website www.heikedelmore.com.

If you signed up for email notifications, no worries, we will still have your email and will send you updates and tips!

So now to today's article...

Do you ever start thinking to yourself, “What the heck am I doing? Is all this hustle worth it? How can I get more exposure for my business?” Here’s the scenario – You built your website, but you wish more people were booking. And worse, you fear many of your ideal clients will never know you exist! Insecure thoughts start to race through your head… you think it must be because…

Read full article...

Good luck creating a buzz around your photography business!

Please add your best tips and ideas directly in the comments!

Thank you, as always, for reading and sharing. You made my day!

5 ways to make clients feel comfortable

Understandably, people are usually feeling pretty nervous, vulnerable or anxious before a photo shoot. And I can totally relate! However after the photo shoot, my clients often tell me that it was easier than they had anticipated. Mainly because I made them feel comfortable!

To get that special connection in your photos - in the eyes and body language of your client - these are 5 things I do with my clients to make them feel more comfortable during their photo shoot.  Remember to always smile + listen when using any of these 5 methods:

 

1. Making a new friend

When a client is booking her photo shoot, be sure to ask her a lot of questions about herself.

It’s like making a new friend! Asking questions helps me get to know my client’s personality and also what she likes in terms of style and imagery. It gives us something to talk about. And finding any similarities between us, helps the conversation flow easily on the day of the photo shoot.

 

2.  Process

Just before the photo shoot begins, I warn my client that I will most likely be talking throughout the entire session - often gently repeating myself with posing and coaching instructions.

By informing my client of my process ahead of time, she never feels discouraged or like she is doing something wrong. She interprets my repetitious instructing as encouragement rather than criticism.

 

3. Tell a story to set the scene

Tell a story to get your client into the right mindset or character.

Sometimes if can’t get my client to give me the connection or body language I am looking for, I tell her a story to get her into character. With couples for example, I may say “you both just snuck out of a formal dinner party and met up in this secluded area to share a private moment”. Or with a couture portrait client, I may tell her to picture herself as a celebrity she likes and ask her to show me how that celebrity would portray this look.  This works wonders!

 

4. Share personal experience

Share your own experience of being photographed focusing on how you felt during the process.

I often share my personal experience of being in front of the camera and how nervous and vulnerable I felt. Let your client know that you can relate to how she is feeling. And how the poses may feel really awkward, they actually look good in camera. This will help reduce your client’s stress and you will see her shoulders relax.

 

5. Show positive emotions

When a shot looks great don’t be afraid to show your excitement!

During the photo shoot when a pose or shot looks great, I can’t help but get excited and let out a little squeal! This always gives the client an extra boost of confidence and reinforces that she is doing a great job! She will also inject more effort and enthusiasm in her next poses.

I hope you found these tips helpful! I’d love to hear any tips you have on making your clients feel more comfortable in front of the camera.

 

LIKING THIS CONTENT? SIGN UP FOR UPDATES. It's FREE...

Name *
Name



Celebrating International Women's Day

 Heike Delmore celebrates empowering woman through photography

Heike Delmore celebrates empowering woman through photography

Let's face it ladies: this is a great time in history to be a woman! We can be beautiful, smart and successful...all at the same time! We no longer have to choose between family or career. We can have it all if we are brave enough to dream it! This is it - this is now! Celebrating all of the amazing women I know and will get to know in the future! Happy International Woman's Day!

Free Fonts & Branding Resources

 Heike Delmore's favourite high quality free branding resources  |  www.coutureportrait.ca

Heike Delmore's favourite high quality free branding resources  |  www.coutureportrait.ca

My Secret Sauce

In addition to stunning photography, presenting a professional brand to the public is paramount in reinforcing your value, gaining trust and attracting your ideal client! I receive a lot of questions about my branding and my use of typography. And although I am not going to reveal my fonts - I consider them to be a part of my secret branding sauce - I am going to reveal some excellent free resources where you can find high quality editorial style fonts. Did I say free? Yes, I said free!

Mind your Ps and Qs

Please be sure to read any licensing restrictions before using a font for your business. Some fonts allow only for personal use - so be sure to read the fine print.

Using your Font on your website 

Did you know many fonts can be used both in graphics and on the web? Once you find your brand's perfect font you can use it for your website text! Take a look at the Web Font Generator at Font Squirrel.

My favourite Free Editorial style fonts

For my hand picked collection of free fonts, take a look at my pinterest board called "Branding & Free Fonts". I will be updating this board whenever I find new high quality fonts - so feel free to follow this board! :-)

Websites with free fonts:

If you would like to do some research on your own, these are a few websites where I have found some excellent free fonts!

*Please note, I have not tried nor downloaded them all of these fonts personally - so please, as always, exercise caution when downloading anything from the internet!*

 

 

LIKING THIS CONTENT? SIGN UP FOR UPDATES. It's FREE...

Name *
Name

How to make your facebook cover image crisp

UPDATE:

Facebook is always evolving. The dimensions below in my original article no longer give the best results. I have since changed my cover image dimensions to 851x477 and have achieved clear crisp text and imagery. In addition, the coverage image also looks great on mobile devices including tablets. The height is 477px so it looks great on tablets. You'll notice it's a bit tall for your desktop, but you can drag and drop to align for best results.

Here is the Faecbook coverage page: www.facebook.com/hdelmorephotographer

If you are like me, I have struggled with Facebook's compression making my images look blurry and fuzzy. It is especially obvious when adding text to your Facebook cover image. I researched best practices and was told by several online sources to make sure my cover image fit perfectly, I needed to size it to 851 x 315 pixels 72 DPI. When I did that, and saved it as a .jpg and/or .png the result looked like this:

heikedelmore_fbcoverimagetips_before.jpg

Not very professional! The "www" and ".ca" are very blurry! Initially I thought the colours between the text and the image were too close and needed more contrast. So I changed the text to white. Same problem.

Then I thought about how many new apps and programs are gearing themselves towards this new retina display.  And as such, they require a larger image size.

Using this retina display concept, I resized my Facebook cover image to: 1702 x 630 px! And magic!

heikedelmore_fbcoverimagetips_after.jpg

See not only how clear the image is, but also how crisp the text appears. Even the small ultra thin text is clear. I saved my 1702 x 630 px 72 DPI cover as .png however, it will still appear this crisp as a jpg.

* For aesthetic purposes I decided to make the image of the model larger in my 1702 x 630 px layout. I just changed my mind and thought it looked better. It changes nothing in terms of quality in Facebook.


 
 

LIKING THIS CONTENT? SIGN UP FOR UPDATES. It's FREE...

Name *
Name