Most creatives start their own service-based business because they love what we do and hope to make a living doing more of what they love. Very quickly, they discover 90% of owning a successful business is working on the business and only 10% is working in the business. One of the major parts of the “90%” is dealing with your company financials.
I’ve been blogging for almost a decade now and it’s no secret I think blogging is the coolest invention since the printing press. (Well, maybe that’s still cooler, I really like books a lot. And there would be no books without the printing press. But you get the point. Blogs are cool.)
Starting your own blog doesn’t have to be complicated, it’s simpler than ever before thanks to a few awesome companies: BlueHost and WordPress. If you have 5 minutes to set aside right now, we can get an awesome blog up and running for you in less time than it will take to make dinner tonight.
(On that note, you’re starting a blog today! Don’t make dinner. Order in!)
Although nothing could replace the quality and feel of a high-quality digital SLR camera… there are some moments in life where your iPhone will have to do the trick. Instagram is centred around iPhone image and more and more of our social media lives are becoming ‘in the moment.’ Knowing how to take better photos with your iPhone is a skill all bloggers and small business owners should learn!
Today, I wanted to provide a few easy tricks you can use to take better photos with your iPhone and start updating the look of your blog and social media photos.
1. Look for Simple Backgrounds
There’s no doubt about it – photos with simpler backgrounds and a clean, crisp look receive more attention on Pinterest and Instagram by far! In addition, you can’t go wrong with simple – it will say professional every time. What do you have around your home and office that could be used as a background for photos? Look for texture: wood floors, marble tile, a white or light grey wall, even a fur rug – neutral colours work best unless you can match one of your brand colours in a background!
If you were a fan of my post Using Pinterest for Your Small Business you will love the information I’m sharing in today’s post. I have been having so much fun with this platform! When I started this experiment in July 2014, I had 3289 followers.. and only 2 months later, I was able to grow to 7091 followers — a gain of almost 4000 followers in 2 months!
Update: As of March 2016, I have18,500+ followers on Pinterest. So that’s an increase of 14,000 followers in 6 months. Read on if you want to experience the same success growing your Pinterest following.
Gathering followers simply for impressive numbers isn’t worth much. What is worth a lot? Directing brand new users to my blog that get my brand, my vision and my way of thinking. Hopefully, these like-minded entrepreneurs will love what they read, sign up for my list and become a loyal follower of what I’m teaching and sharing!
I work with a second photographer aka “second shooter” at almost every wedding I photograph. I love having a “coworker” along on the day to help me with whatever I need, capture a helpful second angle and keep the timeline running smoothly. Weddings are better, together.
Personality: It’s really important that you get along with your second shooter. Before you work with a new photographer and add them to your second shooter “roster” meet for coffee! And don’t ask only photography-related questions, get to know them as a person to see how well the two of you could work together.
Equipment: I work with Canon gear, but I don’t require that my second shooters do. (It’s just ideal, if they do!) However I do ask that my second shooters have professional level lenses, flashes and back-up equipment.
Experience: How many weddings have they shot? Have they photographed any weddings solo or mainly stuck to second shooting? I don’t think there’s any ‘deal breakers’ here (unless of course, my second shooter has shot no weddings) as everyone starts somewhere. It’s the creative eye and portfolio that you’re really looking for over “resume.”
1. Be Kind. Our job as photographers is to make everyone smile who we come into contact with – be happy and boom, it makes everyone’s day better.
2. Show Up On Time. Most of my second shooters (I work with a couple consistently) live in the suburbs and we commute into the city together. I’ll provide a time we’re leaving Langley to arrive in Vancouver a bit early. That’s the “optimal” timing I provide so it’s my second shooters responsibility to arrive on time so I can leave on time.
3. Dress Professionally. We don’t want to stick out on the wedding day. We can blend in by dressing business casual, with a modest dress (colour is fine in my books! I don’t always stick to black!) and professional looking flats or sandals. (Do your makeup/hair as well and don’t hesitate to wear a few pretty accessories!)
4. Your Priority is Assisting the Main Photographer. The title “second shooter” may be deceiving, at least in my process on a wedding day. Although second shooters do photograph a second angle, I rely on them more as an assistant – so I can get the shot quicker and better than I could alone. Moving the dress, clearing the space, grabbing the veil, etc.
5. No Marketing Allowed. That sounds so strict but I don’t mean it harshly… the wedding was booked by the main photographer and the second shooter is there as a contractor for that company. The two of you as a united front for one business that day – so second shooters, leave your business cards at home! And if someone asks for your business card (even though they said it to you, the second shooter) reply, “Yes! Let me go get Jamie’s for you!”
6. Be Clear about Expectations. If you have an idea of what you want your second shooter to capture for you on the wedding day, communicate it. Don’t assume they know! I like my second shooter’s to capture the groom’s getting ready (if the bride would like it) and I request a shot that’s “straight on” of him putting on his tie, adjusting jacket, etc. I also like detail shots if he’s not wearing his suit already when they arrive. During the day I like “side angles” of the bride and groom and bridal party, if possible – and also candid reactions of guests.
7. Being Available. During the reception things can happen like running low on flash batteries, etc, and my second shooter could run for those in my bag while I keep shooting.
1. Image Delivery: I have my second shooter download their memory cards on my laptop before leaving the reception. I find it easier to have all images in one place when I arrive home.
2. Image Usage Rights: I allow my second shooters to blog weddings they shoot with me, however they need to wait until after I have blogged the day. In addition, when the blog post is written I request that the second shooter make it clear in the description they were second shooting for Jamie Delaine and add a link.
A) On Facebook: I allow shooters to post a link to their blog post on Facebook, however I don’t allow shooters to post an album of images. This is simply personal preference and may be picky but I have had problems with brides adding second shooters, tagging and sharing images from their pages – and as the second shooter was simply a “contractor” from my business – I want the Facebook recognition to all go through my page.
B) On their Website: I allow shooters to include images in their portfolio from weddings they shot with me, however I don’t allow full galleries to be displayed. This meaning, if you have a gallery called “Sarah and Robert” and you shot Sarah and Robert’s wedding with me – I don’t permit this. However if you have a “Weddings” folder and 5 of Sarah and Robert’s images are in there along with 8 other weddings, that’s okay.
“Wow, you look really young! How old are you anyway?” … a sentence that a teenage business owner never wants to hear. For those of you who don’t know, I started my photography business when I was sixteen years old. For the first few years, I tried to hide my age. Not deceptively, of course… but my birth date wasn’t something I published or offered unless a client directly asked.
So, let’s talk, does age matter? What’s “too young to start a business” and how can we deal with nay-sayers? I’m chatting a bit about this concept in a video below!