If you're a photographer, then you know what focus in photography is all about. However, do you know what it means in relation to your business?
As a photography business owner, you will find that you're forced to wear many hats. You are the photographer, client relations expert, marketer, designer, social media manager, bookkeeper, and whatever else you need to be to keep the business running.
It's easy to get overwhelmed and lose sight of the primary goal of establishing your business. By learning how to focus all your resources on one task before moving to the next will help a great deal in getting everything done efficiently and effectively.
This is how to go about it.
When you start a photography business, it is tempting to want to do anything and everything to prove yourself and earn some money. This means doing all sorts of shoots from weddings, to birthday parties, baby shoots, cars, travel, food and whatever else comes up. When your business is new, it gives you a great opportunity to experiment and play around with different styles and types of photography. If you, however, want to grow and be taken seriously in the industry, you need to move towards narrowing your focus to a genre in photography that you're passionate about and good at. Something that will give you an edge over the competition.
The Pareto principle basically holds that 80% of your outcome is derived from 20% of the inputs. As a business owner, you will soon realize that about 20% of your clients will bring in about 80% of your income. So instead of trying to create a huge clientele list, it's best to focus on attracting fewer clients and then converting them into long-term clients. When it comes to prioritizing your daily activities, apply the same principle. Allocate the most important tasks during the hours when you're most productive. The less important duties, on the other hand, should be scheduled during the times when you're least productive.
This does not mean that you should not aspire or work towards your client lists. The more clients you have, the more money your business will be making, but if you cannot keep the clients coming back, then you're not really doing your business justice. In fact, in this case, you should begin evaluating why you don't have return customers who are crucial to your business.
To do lists are a big part of most people's lives today. When running a business a to do list can help you organize your day and keep track of the things that need to be done. Nonetheless, a to do list is no good if you're not able to take action on it. Instead of being so stuck on doing everything in the list, why not pick the three most important tasks on the list and focus on those from early morning, and keep moving to the other tasks in order of priority?
Several years ago I decided that I would narrow my focus and only photograph high school seniors. This focus allowed me to treat each client with high quality and afforded me time to create artistic images that grew my business greatly. I focused on the 20% of my clients that brought me 80% of my income. Those high-end clients referred other high-end clients. The result is that I was able to work less and make more in my business by being hyper focused, supplying great customer service and creating an artistic brand.
Quality is better than quantity when it comes to growing your photography business. Think about how much time you waste by not focusing on the right clients? Make a list of the qualities of your ideal client and the type of photography you love to shoot. Then put more focus into that area, you won't be burnt out, you will most likely make more money by doing less and love each session you shoot!
To see more of my senior photography head over to Frievalt Photography
Dan Frievalt, M. Photog, CR.