Small biz owners– this one is for you! I know we’ve all heard a lot about how to pivot and protect our businesses due to the impacts of COVID-19… weddings are being postponed, shoots are cancelled, and partnerships are on hold. But today I wanted to share 5 easy ways that you can actually GROW your business during these crazy times and set yourself up for success! These tips could apply to any small business, but I’ll be giving some insight from a photographer’s perspective.
1. Find ways to provide more value to your clients.
Chances are you’re pretty stressed out during these unprecedented times and I don’t blame you one bit because it’s hard owning a small business during a global pandemic! But you know who else is stressed? Your clients. Their wedding may have been postponed, or they may be facing a reality of celebrating their big day in a way they were not originally dreaming of. Either way, this is a great opportunity for you to add value to the client experience! One of my favorite value-adds for my clients is my Marybeth Marlow Photography Bridal Guide. This magazine is something I send to all of my clients right after booking and covers a wide array of topics that will help them throughout the wedding planning process. Everything from what to do if it rains on your wedding day to sample family formals lists– my brides tell me all the time that this guide made them feel even more prepared for any situation that may arise through the planning process or on their actual wedding day! It’s a simple gesture that I couldn’t recommend enough to fellow photographers. Other ways you can add value could be blog posts with wedding planning tips for your couples, resources on elopements, or just simply reaching out to all of your clients and letting them know that you’re there and you’re thinking about them. A small gesture can go a long way! 🙂
2. Update your website.
During slower seasons is the best time to update your website. Making sure the portfolio you share is up to date is so important for attracting your ideal clients. If you’ve been waiting for time to redesign your website (either good ol’ DIY style or actually hiring a web designer) this is also a great opportunity to finally make that leap. I’ve often found that photographers focus so much time/effort on their social media profiles and completely neglect their websites which decreases your SEO (more on this in a future blog post!).
3. Invest in education / strengthen your craft.
With all the extra time at home there is no better time to invest in education to strengthen your craft! Some of my favorite educators with fabulous online courses are Katelyn James and Amy & Jordan. It’s also a great time to get out there and simply practice shooting to stay sharp! Personally, I’ve found that shooting wedding details at home in quarantine using sample invitations, my own wedding rings, and items in my styling kit has been the creative outlet I’ve been craving during this time. (See some of these shots + a little BTS below!)
4. Batch blog and social content.
Another thing that’s always on my to-do list but I’m never getting around to is batching blog and social media content! This takes a lot of time (at least for me!) and we’ve been gifted a LOT of extra time right now. So I’ve been personally taking advantage of this by organizing my future social media feed, working on upping my caption game, and prepping some educational blog posts for brides and photographers to slowly go live throughout the rest of 2020.
5. Set processes in place for your 2020 taxes!
I saved the most boring tip for last because let’s be honest… nobody likes to think about tax season! This is the perfect time to begin organizing receipts, recording mileage in a spreadsheet, implementing a tax tool (like Quickbooks!), and just simply getting your finances in order to have an up-to-date view of the financial state of your business. You will thank yourself come tax season next year!
Cheering you on!