San Diego, California
Brand photography in sunny San Diego
and around the world since 2017.
Okay, let’s be real…
It’s tough to get to that feeling of ease where you feel like you’re making real money as a brand photographer.
You’re ready to scale your business further right? But perhaps you’re not quite sure how.
Maybe you’re feeling stuck, burned out, or that you’re not making enough for the amount of work you’re putting in.
You’re working nights, weekends, and holidays. You name it. Another one of your son’s baseball games – missed. Why? Because that was the only day your client had available on her calendar.
All you want is a photography business where you – call the shots, make good money, and also flourish in your life.
You want to be able to afford life, while also being able to enjoy life.
Ah, that’s the dream.
In this article, I’m giving you 6 steps to scale your personal brand photography business to 6-figures.
So you can finally…
This is so possible for you.
I know you can get to the point of complete confidence in what you do and charge accordingly.
Here’s how to scale your business, while flourishing in your life.
But first, have you heard about my new Mastermind Flourish? It’s a mentorship program created specifically for personal brand photographers. Check out the details here.
Okay, let’s get into it.
I’m sharing 6 steps to scale your business with you today. We’ll dive deeper into each of these steps during my new mastermind, Flourish, launching in January. Having all of these in order is what it takes to scale your business to 6 figures.
Set goals around your vision. Dive deep into your wants so you build your business around your desires. This is how you build a business that continues to fulfill you.
And as a personal brand photographer, it’s important to practice what you preach. Be clear on and develop your own personal brand first. This way prospective clients see you have your own stuff together and feel more confident in hiring you. So having your mission, elevator speech, brand promise, and brand story all decked out is imperative.
Here’s a quick breakdown of each so you can write yours out and add them to your website.
✔ Your Mission — Your purpose and why it’s important to you. Feel free to check out my mission for reference.
✔ Elevator Pitch — Your quick spiel about what you do. It’s used to promote yourself. This one’s not kept on your website but should be in your back pocket at all times.
✔ Brand Promise — What you plan to do for your clients to serve them best. Here’s an example of my promise.
✔ Brand Story — The journey you took to get to the place in your business you now are. Here’s my brand story if you want to take a look.
Make sure you know what all of these are, so your website and brand are clear to your ideal clients. That’s how they’ll know you’re the perfect personal brand photographer for them.
This is where I see brand photographers struggle the most. Your pricing and your offer should always be in alignment. When you craft your offers, make sure they are repeatable and something you can overdeliver on. And something that is not gonna burn you out.
Then think about your ideal lifestyle, and break down how many clients you need to fulfill it. You can reverse engineer to find out how much you need to charge for your services. About 50 percent of small businesses fail within five years1. Let’s make sure that is not you. If you want to scale and continue to rise – you’ve got to make sure you’re charging enough.
If you charge too low, you’re gonna feel burnout, and ultimately resent your clients. You’ll also feel stressed in other areas of your life. You have to feel good about your pricing. Because if you don’t, you’ll feel a disconnect there. Your clients will feel it just as much as you.
Money mindset is real.
Remember that pricing is a balance of heart and strategy.
And don’t forget to consider the name of your offer(s) and how many sessions are included. That is how you really stand out and attract your dream clients. Carefully crafting your offers and pricing sets you up to scale your business.
A magical launch strategy can be a godsend. Starting at zero clients every month is super stressful. When you have a launch, you can sell 10 to 20 photo shoots from just one launch.
I’ve done it, so I know it’s possible.
In fact, I’ve had a 10K launch, 20K launch, and a 44K launch. Which, btw, I teach my photography students exactly how to do for themselves in my upcoming mastermind.
Make sure there’s strategy behind each launch. Launches have been really supportive to my photography business. Each one has allowed me to focus on my zone of genius more instead of spending all of my time on marketing. And it can contribute to booking you out 6 months in advance!
Bonus Tip: During your launch, it’s best if you’re in a high-vibe state. People buy when you give off high energy and high vibration. Self-care is so important for this. Your daily rituals and habits contribute to this as well.
Here are some examples:
These are things that change the way you feel, and you’ll give that vibe off in your business and your launch.
You’d be surprised how much of a difference this can really make. You’ll literally attract your soul mate clients to your energy.
Marketing is something that many brand photographers dread putting into place. Photographers are creative people, so the idea of marketing can feel a little stuffy. But it is so important. And there are so many options and different ways to put marketing into place. Showing up in multiple places is a great way to not put all of your eggs in one basket.
You can use social media, email newsletters, and networking.
They are each different animals, and I personally love to do all of these.
I’m active on Instagram, have an email list, and even go to in-person networking events, which is easy to forget sometimes.
✔ On Instagram (or your favorite social media channel), you can create quick posts. They’re powerful because many people can see your posts at one time.
✔ In-person events are intimate and personal. When someone sees you in the flesh, they connect with you on a different level.
✔ With an email list, you control what your followers see from you. And you have your audience in one singular place. So when you have a launch coming up, you can share the details with everyone at the same time. The inbox is where sales are made.
In my course Flourish, I make sure every one of my students leaves with an email marketing system in place. I want to ensure every photographer who leaves my course has a way to introduce any offer they create.
This is a big one. Money mindset is *crucial* to being able to scale your business. Make it a point to do money mindset exercises daily. You have to believe in your own prices and speak confidently about them.
On top of that, you should always know where your money is coming from and where it’s going. This is how you know if your business is profitable or not.
I can’t stress the importance of this enough. Three things on this topic to keep in mind is to always:
✔ Know your numbers. Be in the know of your incoming money and outgoing money so you know what your profit is.
✔ Pay yourself first. Put 50 percent of your incoming money into your bank account, and the other 50 percent towards taxes and business expenses.
✔ Step into the role of the CFO. You’re the boss, but that also means that you are in charge of keeping tabs on your money.
I am huuuge on the profit-first philosophy, which is making sure you’re paying yourself first before anything else. Then pay taxes, and all the other expenses.
I’ve learned this philosophy from this book by Mike Michalowicz, which I love. (This is not an affiliate link, it’s just such a great read that I want to recommend it to you.)
Here are some quick tips for your sales calls:
✔ Always listen more than you talk. Take the time to hear their point of view, concerns, and what they want.
✔ Ask the right open-ended questions. For example, “tell me what your 1 to 5-year vision is for your business.”
✔ Take time to connect with the person that’s on the phone. Your prospect can tell when you’re not really hearing everything they’re telling you.
If your client is an entrepreneur, that means they’re super passionate about something. So if you take the time to focus on that, it will work wonders for your closings.
I love helping brand photographers go from having really low closing rates to having their best months yet in sales. It’s one of my favorite things to witness.
I’m an advocate for a healthy work-life balance. So, I always remind my fellow brand photographers not to forget to tie in things they enjoy.
I went through a period where I was always hustling and constantly burned out. It was so bad that I made myself sick and exhausted. I wasn’t happy. Just busy.
So, don’t forget it’s important to take weekends off, stop working at a reasonable hour, and get support when you need it.
That could be anything from building a team to hiring a business mentor. If you bring on help and support for your business you can get your time back and even invest in self-care.
Wouldn’t that be something?
If you’re ready to flourish in your business while also flourishing in life – check out my mastermind Flourish, launching this January.
Inside Flourish, you get personal support, community, and accountability to scale your photography business with more freedom and flow.
At the end of our time together, you’ll feel:
You get all of this (and more) in Flourish. Plus I’ll be right there with you every step of the way, along with other eager brand photographers! It’s time to scale your business.