Looking back at 2017
So 2017. We’re a couple of weeks into 2018 now and I thought now would be a good time to talk about 2017. I feel like it was a really good year for me. It was a bit strange in places, but mostly it was a good year. Okay so I think we’re more like getting towards the end of January, but one of my resolutions is to blog more! Even though I’m a bit late I intend to stick to it. Because I want my audience, that’s you guys, to get to know me better.
A glance at 2018 so far…
So let’s take a look at how 2018 is shaping up to be at the moment. 2018 has started really well with wedding meetings, trade shows, photo shoots, joining community groups of fellow marketers and photographers AND I upgraded my camera! It’s the way I wish 2017 had started really, but 2017 was a year of discovery for me and my business.
Okay back to 2017…
Last year I started to really get a feel for my how I wanted my business to look, I launched my new website which I tend to do every year to keep things fresh (there will soon be an update this year, soon as I can!). I defined my business properly with what I wanted to shoot: Weddings, Portraits and Pets. And I did shoot those things, and definitely I loved it. Since I started my business I’d kind of been floating through it, winging it if you like, but achieving success in growth each year.
In 2017, I learned what it truly means to run a business and I began to think about it seriously, way more than I had before. I really wanted it to be a success. No matter how big or small the business grows or becomes, I want my customers to feel like they made the right choice when they choose me to photograph their wedding, their precious family, or their loved pets. So what I realised was that I wanted customer service to be the forefront of my business.
I did this by implementing strategies that enforce my customer service without it becoming too gimmicky. I created a small referral system, hand-delivering products where I was able to, and meeting with clients prior to shoots as often as I could. Now there are a mountain of ways I can improve these systems and I am currently working to achieve that.
If you’re a previous client of mine, and there was something you’d wish I’d’ve done but didn’t, please send me an email and let me know. Your feedback really is truly important, to building a business that works for you guys. You’re the forefront of it, after all. Email me here: email@example.com
So what actually happened in 2017?
I got to shoot some weddings for some amazing couples, couples who I used to work with, study with and who booked me on a recommendation – thank you to the recommender, that truly is the highest compliment you can pay your photographer!
Documenting someone’s wedding can put some pressure on you to say the least, but getting to know your customers, giving them the photos they will treasure for the rest of their lives; that’s something too beautiful to explain, I feel honoured just to have been picked out of so many amazing photographers.
Photographing families is something I love to do, and when a family came back for their third year of photographs with me I knew I was on the verge of creating something special. I really hope to have more customers who feel like they can keep coming back year after year. To see how their lives are changing is a wonderful thing to be a part of. I’m not just your photographer, I’m your documenter, your story teller. Thank you for that.
I also photographed some other awesome things…
I enhanced my pet photography by giving something back. Photographing dog shows for charity and volunteering at a local rehoming centre. I was able to photograph a range of animals in order for the charity to re-home them. It’s proven that professional images are more eye catching, therefore will help to get that animal be seen, shared and hopefully in the end find their forever home. It’s something I want to try and dedicate more time to doing this year.
Due to the nature of the rescues specifications I am unable to post any of those photos at this time. Check out the Facebook page for regular updates: www.facebook.com/lnzphotographer
I attended my first Christmas Craft Fayre as an exhibitor where I went and set up to take family photos. It was very last minute, as the slots were fully booked when I enquired. However someone had cancelled and I was therefore able to take their place. It was an experience that taught me so much, like how much you need to be able to exhibit! Tables, cash boxes, a method of card payment, and so many more little things you just wouldn’t have thought about!
The final thing that help me and my business grow in 2017, was the 365 project I undertook. Photographers often undertake these kinds of projects because it helps them to continue honing their craft. I’d always thought I wouldn’t be able to stick to it, and while I always got behind on posting daily, I managed to finish the project. One photo a day for the whole year. Don’t get me wrong, it was almost a relief when it was over! But how I grew in that time. I tried things I otherwise may have avoided, like astro-photography! And I was able to hone and improve my photography skills. Always a bonus in this business, we’re always learning new techniques and styles.
That’s one thing I love about photography. It’s ever changing, and always a challenge, here’s to 2018 being a cracking year!
Lindsey at LNZPHOTO