Addicted to Facebook?

Let’s be honest with ourselves here. Are you addicted to Facebook? Twitter? A certain photography forum? Does this addiction get in the way of your work? Do you find youself jumping between minutes of work, and then hours playing on iwastesomuchtime.com ?

If you’re a Google Chrome user, welcome to the world of Stay Focused! It’s an awesome little Chrome plugin that allows you to literally SHUT OFF certain websites! Here’s some the things that you can do with it:

- Completely disallow yourself to go to a website for a certain period of time (i.e. if you MUST get things done and simply can’t focus, you can “Nuke ‘Em”)

- Create allowed time periods that you can visit your blocked websites. For example, I scheduled myself to only allow 60 minutes on Facebook between 5pm and midnight every night. This will ensure that I focus on being present when my husband is home and not just sitting on the couch playing on Facebook.

- Set work day hours for websites

Want to see an example? I decided to nuke Facebook for an hour in Stay Focused:

And here’s what I got when I went to Facebook!:

80,000 Miles?!

OH BOY, this is going to be fun! Along with all of my <i>wonderful</i> weddings this year, I’m heading out now and then to speak with tons of photographers around the country about the benefits of amazing systems in small business. Should be a blast! Hoping to get enough points for that trip to Bora Bora that Brad promised me. Right, honey?;)

Leeann Marie Photographer Tour Workshop

Handling Growth in Your Photography Business

For some, growth is a gradual process made of months and years of connections, leads, new programs, and changes.

For others growth is a fast process, made of one pheonomenon that sparks large interest in a small period of time.

Neither is easy – both can be difficult routes to travel, and neither is more admirable than another. They’re different routes, but when done well, they can lead to great, successful businesses.

In the case of large growth in a short period of time, it’s important to consider the possibility of  what could go wrong before you even know it. Things could get out of hand faster than you can blink. The ability to handle change and adapt quickly is heavily dependent on systems – having a plan in place to handle the growth and execute with high levels of customer service.

What kind of plans do you have in place? What would you do if you suddenly were twice as busy? Do you think you could handle it?

DA FOCUS

Da Focus – it’s a habit. A state of mind. A being.

 

There are often days when I know there is a ton to do. I also am a huge gym rat and know that I need to get there mid-day in order to feel good at all. Client meetings. Emails. Editing. Ordering. Phone calls. So much to do!…..

 

…and that’s when I bring out Da Focus. Yes, I did get all ghetto fab on that one, but that’s because I seriously listen to rap music as I work. And it makes me work hard. And get things done.

 

The key? Waking up early. Early bird gets the worm, ladies and gents, and arising at 6:30am is no joke to my holy crap the Snooze button is really just. right. over. there abilities, but I have to force myself to get up and GSD. Get Sh*t Done. No joke. Rappers say no joke.

 

What time are you up? Do you wake up, brew that coffee, and get down to biz-nass? If not, do it! Get as *much* done as humanly possible in the first 2-3 hours that you are awake. Run around like crazy. Make a to-do list the night before. I think you’d be amazed at how much you can get done in a short period of time in the early-daylight hours. Before anyone or anything catches up to you and demands your attention.

 

Word.

Seriously – this is my Spotify playlist. I listen it to all the time and I look like a FOOL!

Albums: The Benefit of Pre-design

It seems as though there are two schools of thought and preference when it comes to album design, and at what point in the process the client should be involved. While there is no wrong way to do this in your business, delivering an album pre-design to your clients can help with a few major points:

1) Solidifies expertise: Your clients have hired you as the expert, and this includes (whether you think so or not) you are also the expert in album design. Creating a starting point for your client further enforces the idea that you are the expert in your field and can direct them to making the best photography decisions.

2) Reduces client stress: An album pre-design reduces the stress placed upon your client. If you are working towards an experience that promotes clarity and a stress-free process, producing an album pre-design as a starting point can really help your clients to feel calm after the wedding-day.

3) Manages time to delivery: If you deliver an album pre-design in a relatively close time period to the release of images (whether before or after the gallery is released), your clients will still be anxious to review their images and request any necessary changes to the album. This can aid in managing the time to delivery of your albums, and also reduce the chances that an album will take a year or more to deliver to your clients.

4) Encourages small changes: Again, by delivering an album pre-design, you’ve established that you are the expert, so hopefully requested changes will be minimal, as the client will likely trust your expertise.

Jeff - I think the important part to clarify here is what you mean by pre-design, as that term has gotten cloudy over the last few years. Are you referring to designing an album before your client picks out the images, but have already ordered an album in their package? Or are you referring to over-desigining the album where they order 40 pages, and you design 80?

admin - Ah, great question, Jeff! I’m referring to pre-designing the album to spec that is included in the package. I have never employed the technique of over-designing to upsell, although I know it works well for some.

So yes, pre-designing the album that your client has already selected.