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Hi, I'm Brooke! I'm a believer, wife, mama to two, Oklahoma photographer, and photography business coach.
I help photographers grow profitable full-time businesses from home.
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Are you stressed about the hard economic times we’re facing? Does a looming recession have you worried about your photography business? Today’s episode on the Book More Clients Photography Podcast, I’m sharing the ONE thing you MUST do for your photography business to survive any season or a recession.
In today’s episode on the Book More Clients Photography Podcast, I’m discussing the decisions you need to face when you don’t know what to do for your photography business to survive a recession.
It’s no secret that we are living in tough times right now. Now we are in the midst of an upcoming recession. The economy is not doing well. No one is talking about what’s going to happen next. You’re wondering what to do for your photography business to survive a recession. So, I want to share the number one thing you must do for your photography business to survive during this recession. Or any high or low season that comes along.
The businesses that succeed are the ones that pay attention and adapt to their market. So, the number one secret to surviving any season or any hardship is that you must be adaptable. You must be open for change and paying attention. You’ve got to be two steps ahead of your client.
There are so many decisions that we have to make on a daily basis. There are even more decisions that you need to make for your business right now.
The first obvious decision is, are you going to be able to continue with your business? You need to decide, are you in? Or are you out? Are you willing to be committed to your business and do whatever it takes to survive through this low period that we’re that we’re walking through right now? And the recession that is to come?
The good news is – it won’t last forever. Are you going to press forward and fight with all you’ve got, be adaptable, and see your business survive the recession? Or are you going to shut your doors now and find something else to do? There’s no shame in either decision that you make. But you need to make a decision quickly. You need to decide if you are committed or if you would rather do something else.
For those of you that are 100% committed – the first thing you should decide is whether or not you need to commit to working more during this season in order to hit your current profit goal. If you don’t want to increase or decrease you prices and want to stay where you’re at, it might cost you working a little extra to actually bring in your current profit goal.
You might have to work more in your marketing or increase the value of what you’re currently offering so that clients will continue to book you at those prices. Are you willing to spend more time working in this season? Or are you looking to increase your prices and work less? a
At this point, you are weighing two different resources. You’re either going to value more of your time during this season, or you’re going to value more of your money during this season. I’m not going to shame you for either one. I’ve walked through seasons where I had to sacrifice time with my family and doing other things in order to make the cushion of money that we needed at the time. Then I’ve had seasons where I value more of my time than I do my money. I would cut my budget to be able to make that time with my family, rather than focusing on the money.
This is up to you and your family and your personal goals of what matters more to you in this season. What do you need more of in this season? You’re probably want both time and money. I totally understand that. But sometimes more time and more money don’t happen at the exact same time. So are you going to be working more in this season? Or are you going to be working less?
I’d like to share some options you can consider implementing into your photography business during a recession. The first option is to create a lower priced package or offer. Not doing away with what you currently have but adding to it!
Maybe you have two packages right now that work well for your market and niche. But you know that people are going to be doing some cutbacks. Consider adding in one lower priced offer, while keeping your other regular packages on the table. You can offer the lower package through the recession and then remove it once the economic hardship is over.
Another option that you have is to pivot to a different niche. Do you currently have a profitable niche? Are you photographing a clientele? Or are you photographing for a reason that if someone misses out, they miss the opportunity completely. Some examples would be senior pictures for high school seniors, newborn photos, birth photography, maternity sessions, things like that. If you an offer where someone’s going to miss out on it, then you have a profitable niche. You’re creating that fear of missing out and fear of missing that offer.
If you don’t have something that’s time sensitive, consider either pivoting to a completely different niche, or adding in a profitable package. For instance, I knew last year that we were probably headed into an economic hardship. There were rumors that there could be a recession. Now we’re battling inflation and all of that. You’re looking at layoffs for major companies and all of that stuff. Those are typically your indicators that a recession is going to happen.
We don’t know how long it’s going to last. We don’t know how bad it’s going to be. But we do know that we are very much in the beginning of what is going to turn out into a recession. With that being said, I knew I needed to add in something to my photography business that was going to have some urgency behind it. I looked into adding seniors or newborns. I recommend that you do the same thing.
If you’re a family photographer, add a maternity session. If you are a children’s photographer, add in cake smashes or a one-year session. Something where there’s a fear of missing out. I don’t always ask you to add more branches to your offers. But during times like these, I’ll be the first to tell you we have to be adaptable. We have to meet the market where they’re at.
If you are just offering things that are luxury service or only looking at increasing your prices, that won’t work for everyone. So, you have to be adaptable. Maybe what you’re offering right now isn’t enough. What you’re offering right now, at the prices that you are trying to hit, may not have enough value behind it. Maybe your quality of work hasn’t caught up to that. So, you have to be really open.
This is why I work with photographers in my coaching program. Because I’m able to look into your business one on one to find the holes. Then we get to patch work those to create a business that works better, even during economic hardship. I am watching my clients have win after win. Yes, I have clients right now that are struggling. But the ones that are continuing to be adaptable and push through and hire me for coaching and get my one on one? They’re the ones having the most success right now. Because they are they are willing to do whatever it takes, you have to have that mindset.
Another option is to target a different market. What I mean is, maybe you’re speaking to the wrong person. You might need an ideal client shift. You’re going to be resonating to different people. Do a little bit of market research. Figure out your current client. Are they cutting back so much they’re not doing photography at all? Do you need to speak to a different type of clientele? Look into that or find a different way to speak to your current clientele.
All of this falls under messaging and marketing. We teach all of this in The Blueprint Program, as well as one on one. If you’re super confused, then you might want to look into working with me one on one or joining one of my programs so that we can help you learn how to speak to your clients.
Another thing to consider is to change your business model when you don’t know what to do for your photography business during a recession. Do you need to get really creative and crafty and come up with a different business model? If you’re charging a sitting fee, maybe it’s actually not sitting well on your clients. Maybe you need to change your business model.
For those of you who know something needs to change, but you don’t know what it is, you’re the prime candidate to come into The Blueprint Program, or to get some coaching. I know we’re walking through economic hardship. But here’s the thing about coaching, when you work with someone that’s already gone ahead of you, or is an expert/authority in your industry, they’re going to be able to coach you. Not just so you can put money in their pocket, but so they can turn around and teach you how to double what you just invested and put that back in your pocket.
That is why it’s called an investment. You’re putting down money. But with a really good mentor or coach will be able to coach you where you’re at and uncover those holes in your business. You’re going to get turn around, and it’s almost guaranteed, right? A lot depends on you putting in the work, but you’re going to be able to double, triple quadruple that money. I have a business coach and a sales coach. Almost every month in my business and usually it’s the same one and I’ll work with them for a year sometimes more than that. Because I work better with them. I’m someone that thrives off of having someone that I can not only brainstorm with but someone to keep me accountable and someone to make me do the work and that’s why coaching works.
Sometimes you are what’s holding yourself back in your business. Back to the thing that you must be when you don’t know what to do for your photography business during a recession – be adaptable. You have to commit. The only reason that you’re going to be adaptable and make these decisions is if you’re committed to your business. If you’re really committed to your business, when you get stuck or you feel lost or you know you’re being lazy, you know that you need to be working on things but you’re not doing it you’ll find a business coach.
It’s like working out, if I don’t have a coach or I’m not involved in a program, I am not accountable to the workouts. A lot of you may be that way in your business. If you’re finding yourself there, and you’re super committed to your business, and you truly are willing to do what it takes, you will find that mentor that is perfect for you. But you need to find a mentor that is going to kick your butt into gear and help you get through this, especially during economic hardship.
You have a lot of decisions to make right now as you figure out what to do for your photography business to survive a recession. I gave you several different examples. You need to decide what you need to make in your business, what changes? How are you going to be adaptable? There are way more decisions than what I listed. This is to get you started. But I want to leave you on a positive note, just for your life in general. I know things are so unpredictable. Here’s what’s so funny: life has always been unpredictable.
We have never been in control. It’s just that we lived in a world where we felt like we were making decisions on a daily basis. Then 2020 came, and let me tell you, it rocked my world. And I’m sure it rocked yours too. It taught me that I’m not in control. It doesn’t matter what my five year plan is, it’s probably not going to happen that way. It’s good to have goals. It’s good to have vision, but we have to understand that we are not in control. But you know, who is? God.
God is in control. He is not surprised by anything that happens. Open your Bible and look, especially in the Old Testament, at how many times they walked through the desert? Look how many times they went through hardship. Look how many times they have leaders who did not honor God in any kind of way and didn’t even acknowledge the existence of God. And how those people still flourished, even under a government that did not.
I want to leave you with three scriptures that I want you to cling to every single day for the rest of your life, because you’re going to need it. We’re going to go through rocky waters, we’re going to go through some low valleys, the Bible tells us this again and again. Here’s what we’re going to cling to:
Psalm 46:1-2, “God is our refuge and strength in ever present help in trouble. Therefore, we will not fear though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.”
Isaiah 41:10 “So do not fear for I am with you. Do not be dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will uphold you with my righteous right hands.”
John 14:27 “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not be afraid.”
So, friend, cling to the truth. Claim the peace that God has given you. You do not have to fear no matter what happens. Choose one of these verses, cling to it with all your might, and know that God is in control and he’s got you no matter what. Commit to your business, to your life and choose to be adaptable.
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