Is social distancing hurting your photography business? I think we can all relate to that problem. COVID-19 isn’t just impacting our social lives, it’s affecting our livelihood in a way that we didn’t see coming. As entrepreneurs, we have to stay on our toes, move with the times, and pivot our business plans to make keep up with our goals.
For a larger list of ideas (including many other industries) visit the original post for Small Business Owners during Coronavirus. Additionally, this post includes a few affiliate links and I earn a commission from the purchase of products or services from these links. This post also encourages you to consider doing the same thing… so let’s jump in!
Below, I’ve created a list of ideas for you to add to your business, services, or shop! Today, I’m encouraging you to think about the ways you can continue to serve your community, while still providing for your family.
Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links and I would love if you decided to use them. Affiliate links + referrals programs help educators like me to fund the free content that we provide on our blogs.
Photographers have so many unused images that they can sell to other business owners as stock images. Images of flowers, things around the house, landscapes, office spaces, etc. are always needed for other business owners so they have content to share.
If you don’t have many images that could be used as stock images, you can quickly and easily photograph some around your home! Set up your workspace and photograph things up close and far away, brew a cup of coffee and photograph it in a variety of different scenes, and think about upcoming holidays and events that people would need content for. When you’re ready to sell them, create an account on Creative Market (affiliate??) and upload them. You can upload them individually, or sell them as a pack so your customers have consistent content to last them a few weeks.
Selling your editing presets is also a great way to create some extra income, because you already have your preset ready to go, and people follow you because they like your photography style. In Lightroom, apply your preset to a file and export it as a DNG file. If you have multiple presets to sell, export all the DNG files and combine them into a zip file.
You can sell your presets in a bundle or individually. Get creative with your pricing and a “bundle discount.” You can sell these items directly to your audience by listing them on your website and sending out an email to your list. Another way to sell them is through Creative Market or even Etsy! Both of those platforms are great because they have search bars within their websites, so be sure to flex your SEO skills when you list your products!
In-Home Product Shoots
Businesses still need images to market their product/services, but they may not have the budget to do a full brand shoot. By offering discounted content creation shoots, you can have your client mail their products to you, photograph them, and send them back. You can photograph them in your own home, on your own time, and these smaller shoots won’t take as much time as a big brand shoot.
Get creative with this! If you don’t have any examples to share with these brands on the work you can do for them, grab some of your favorite products from around your home and set up an example branding shoot. This way you can send image examples to brands you’d love to work with during this time.
You could also consider doing custom branded stock imagery for other entrepreneurs! Have them mail you things that they use all the time in their work (business cards, branded items, a particular notebook, etc). They could also give you a color palette and you can grab items yourself that match their branding – just charge a little extra in case you need to shop for some items, but then you’ll be able to keep those items and build up your arsenal for future photoshoots!
This might be the perfect time to run a sale on products (albums, prints, canvas gallery wraps) with your existing client base. If you’re not already staying in touch with past clients on a regular basis, start by building out an email list using Flodesk and setting up a quarterly client newsletter.
This could become a routine offering that you share with clients as new products are released or when you need to increase cash flow during slower seasons.
Teach what you know how to do—photography. With many school systems being closed, parents are looking for ways to keep their children learning and staying creative from home. Consider creating a photography class.
You could use a platform like Teachable if you want to build out a larger course or do it live for individual families or friend groups that can tune in remotely.
And the best part? No fancy cameras needed. You can teach the basics of photography to children without the need for a DSLR. It’s the photographer that makes the image—not the camera. Students can still learn the basics of the craft without needing heavy duty equipment.
With shoots and weddings rescheduled until later in the year, this may be the perfect time to begin creating valuable content for your audience that also acts as an affiliate marketing opportunity.
Find brands that answer both of the follow questions:
- What products, services, and software would solve your audience’s pain points or make their lives easier?
- What products, services, or platforms do you absolutely love and would feel proud to recommend to your friends?
For example, if you are a wedding photographer, consider writing posts that link out to products that couples might be searching for on their wedding day like:
- 5 Things You Didn’t Know You Needed on your Wedding Day
- 7 Items Every Couple Needs in their Wedding Day Emergency Kit
- Creative Wedding Party Gift Ideas
You can also consider recommending products for your couples that they are already looking for like the perfect pair of flats from Rothy’s or by creating an influencer storefront on Amazon with curated lists of products they will be shopping for during their wedding planning process.
Remember: Affiliate content should always provide value to the reader and the most successful posts earn loyalty from your audience by putting their needs first.
Good content will yield affiliate revenue. Poor content will leave your audience feeling like you just wanted to make money off of them. Always create with the goal of serving your audience well.
A few example of how I’ve done this successfully in the past (while educating my target audience at the time—wedding photographers) included What Shoes to Wear to Shoot a Wedding and the Wedding Photography Assistant Essentials that I wrote in partnership with my lead second shooter at the time, Madison Short.
Want more? I made a larger list of ways to financially pivot during the coronavirus pandemic for all small business owners that might be useful to you!
How to Financially Pivot as a Small Business During COVID-19 >>