How I went from an overworked “I’ll-just-sell-the-digital-files” photographer to building a thriving portrait business based on great clients and finished art, that supports our families & our dreams.
For 12 years, I co-owned one of the top scrapbooking stores in the country. I saw first-hand the power of surprising and delighting our best clients and the impact it had on the bottom line. I knew how to find a cool product at $1 and sell it for $2, so when it came time to move on, I was certain that my next venture, portrait photography, would be “easy.”
Wasn’t I cute?
After a difficult divorce and newly remarried, I went from 2 to 7 kids overnight.
Easing myself into a photography career as a side hustle was a luxury I couldn’t afford.
Did I mention 7 kids?
I quickly realized that creating and selling portraits required a whole lot more of ME than my retail store ever had.
I also made the classic, lazy mistake of copying my competition’s business model.
Selling digital files.
Who wanted to be bothered with figuring out prints and framing and all of that nonsense?
Not me. Besides, I was SUPER BUSY!
So I did what all good little entrepreneurs do.
I buckled down and worked ALL the hours and ALL the days. Missing my kid’s games and performances while I shot “just one more session.”
It didn’t take me long to realize that I was busy, but I wasn’t in business, not really, I was just a camera-for-hire and it wasn’t sustainable.
I had to make a change.
I discovered that building my dream business in the portrait world was going to mean doing things differently.
- How to stop looking at the competition and double down on what and how I love to shoot.
- That I’m a Certified Control Freak and don’t like seeing my work printed by a big box store or a pharmacy.
- How to educate my taste level in interior design concepts to learn how best to print and display my work in my client’s homes.
- How to price products profitably to ensure a sustainable business.
- How to design a transparent selling system to inform my clients and sell my work without feeling like a salesy jerk.
- How to spoil my very best clients and building my business around their needs. (I actually already knew this one, I just forgot it for awhile.)
The more I learned, the more I evolved and my business evolved with me. Including some MAJOR changes along the way that had me losing sleep, afraid I would lose all my clients.
But through challenging myself and continually reworking my business,
I have been able to build a portrait studio business that supports my family and the families of my employees.
I discovered how to build an amazing team which allows me to focus exclusively on the work I love:
photographing & meeting with clients while having time to spend with my family.
In fact, in 2013, my husband and I fulfilled an 8 year dream of him quitting his job and coming to work in the business with me.
So we are ALL IN. 100% of our income comes from Portrait Photography.
Best of all, I’ve had the honor of helping thousands of portrait photographers just like you avoid years of struggle and build thriving businesses of their own.
I teach what I know, because I’m doing it every day.
I teach what I’ve personally done to build a profitable portrait business that doesn’t require hundreds of clients, 12 hour days or working weekends to achieve.
If you like what you’re reading and want to get started with my free portrait resources immediately, check out one of my “how-to” guides.
Are you ready to take the action steps required for building a profitable portrait business that you love?
If you’ve read this far, I know you’re willing to do the work.
Work isn’t your problem.
You’re working, just too much and for too little.
Maybe you’ve been in the trenches of the portrait biz for years but your business has leveled off and you’re wondering how to stay relevant or even interested.
You’re motivated to change things up, you’re just not sure exactly which changes will make the most difference to your business.
You want to feel confident that any effort you invest is going to actually pay off BIG TIME.