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5 Red Flags You Might Be Sending to Potential Clients

June 26, 2017 | carrie

Photo by Rachel Photographs

At Junebug, we’re in the business of finding the best wedding vendors to recommend to couples on our site. Over the years, we’ve compiled a list of red flags for wedding photography businesses that make us feel uneasy or that might make potential clients feel uneasy about working with a business. Today, we’re sharing that list of red flags with you so that you can make sure you’re not sending any bad vibes to potential clients!

1. The latest blog entry is from over 2 months ago

If you haven’t updated your blog in awhile, couples researching your work might get the feeling that you haven’t been doing much work. Keep prospective clients up-to-date on your most recent work. Not only does this make them feel like you’re a trustworthy business, but it helps them decide if you’re a good fit stylistically for their wedding (i.e., your stuff from a year ago is probably pretty different from your recent photography). We feel so strongly that all wedding photographers should blog regularly that we wrote a blog post about it last year.

Photo by Lauren Scotti

2. The latest social post is from over 1 month ago

Again, if you’re not showing off your recent work, then it looks like you don’t have any recent work. We understand that the opposite might actually be happening in that you’re too busy to blog and post to social media, but that’s no excuse. If you’re out there making money for your business, put that money to good use and invest in your marketing, even if that means hiring an intern from a nearby college to post to your blog and social platforms.

3. There is a lack of diversity in the couples photographed

Diversity is a huge issue in our industry and the only way to combat it is to showcase more diverse couples on your website and social platforms. When a same-sex couple or couple of color, for instance, check out your website and they don’t see anyone who looks like them, they may move onto the next photographer. Representation is important! An easy way to add diversity to your portfolio is to offer your services for free to diverse couples. Now, you might be thinking “is she seriously telling me to offer up my services for free dollars??!” Yes! Think about it this way: you’re adding something positive to the industry and hopefully attracting more diverse couples for the future by offering one or two sessions for free. It’s a smart marketing move for you and helps to create a more inclusive wedding industry. When planning your next styled shoot, do a model call for diverse couples or invite the cute couple you saw in line at the grocery store to model for you.

Photo by Melissa Rey Photo

4. There are no credible reviews on the website or on any third-party website (Facebook, Wedding Wire, etc.)

Reviews are credibility signals. For couples planning one of the biggest days of their lives, they want to be sure that your business has a proven track record. Ask your past couples to review your business so that your future couples feel secure in hiring your services. Also, while testimonials on your site are great, reviews on third party sites/apps are 110% more credible.

5. There are no full weddings featured on the website

We’ve seen a ton of websites that just offer a gallery of real weddings (as in, a page that has maybe 30-50 of a photographer’s favorite photos from a select group of real weddings). This is not going to cut it. Potential clients want to see full weddings so that they can see what you offer on the wedding day from start to finish. Also, sharing your full weddings on your blog is such an easy way to bring in traffic from that couple and their friends and family (oh hey, word-of-mouth referrals!).

Joel Bedford Photography Photo by Joel and Justyna

If you’re guilty of any of these red flags, don’t sweat it! They are all easy fixes and just factors to keep in mind while you’re growing your business.

Also, stay tuned…we’re coming out with a wedding photographer website checklist soon! In the meantime, while you’re busy blogging those real weddings, go ahead and check out our 8 SEO Tips for Wedding Photographers.

xoxoCarrie5

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Top Pics of the Week – June 23rd

June 23, 2017 | gabby

photo by Jonnie + Garrett

This week’s Top Pics showcases some really excellent moody tones, as well as playful uses of light! A big thanks to Ryan Chard SmithBeneath The PinesKevin Biberbach, Mati PhotographyMarcela Pulido, Sachin KhonaJohanna Macdonald Photography, and Jonnie + Garrett for sharing their photos with us this week.

photo by Beneath The Pines

photo by Johanna Macdonald Photography

photo by Ryan Chard Smith

photo by Sachin Khona

photo by Mati Photography

photo by Kevin Biberbach

photo by Marcela Pulido

Want to see your work featured in a future Top Pics post? Be sure to tag your Instagram photos with #photobugcommunity, and come join the fun in our Photobug Community Facebook group!

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Instagrammers to Follow – June Edition

June 22, 2017 | carrie

Photo by Catherine Coons

Instagram is as full of opportunity as it is frustration, which is why we’re happy to bring you tons of advice every month from some of the newest, greatest accounts around. This month’s edition of Instagrammers to Follow is so chock-full of beautiful imagery and smart advice that we hope you’ll bookmark this post for future reference! If you’ve been struggling to grow your following or you’re just looking to follow some new accounts for inspiration, read on as this month’s guests have got you covered. Enjoy!

Eden Strader@edenstrader

Instagram has been an amazing tool for my business — my clientele finds the majority of their wedding vendors on Instagram, so it’s been incredibly helpful in reaching couples across the globe. Not only do my followers get to keep up with my portfolio, but they get to know the person who might be photographing their day!

Two of my favorite accounts right now are Ben Sasso and Erich Mcvey,  both opposites in their styles but so inspirational! Ben isn’t afraid to get weird and funky with his images; he’s a constant artistic inspiration. Erich’s style is so clean, yet still creative even throughout his weddings, which I love!

I think the best thing for increasing your engagement on Instagram is to be consistent (both in your quantity, frequency, and caliber of images) and to be personable! Personally, I don’t relate to captions with love quotes, but I love learning more about the photographer behind the image. On Instagram, my captions rarely have to do with the photo, but instead something about me or my couple! This has made me feel a lot more relatable to my followers.

My most popular image on Instagram is this double exposure of one of my bridal clients last year. This is one of my favorite images I’ve ever taken, so I love that so many people appreciated it as well. I think it did so well because it both focuses on the couple and their relationship while tying in the gorgeous mountain ranges in a unique way. This double exposure was done in camera so it’s amazing to see such a challenge workout!

Catherine Coons@catherinecoons

Instagram has been the absolute greatest platform for my business. I just moved from Florida to NYC in the fall — I had zero clients and was taking the biggest leap of faith hoping that things worked out. I began hashtagging all of my work with #NYCWeddingPhotographer, and the inquiries started coming in. I thank Instagram now for getting me on my feet here and allowing me to share my work with people all over the world.

Post often, and keep your work consistent! It’s important to have a feed that flows,  one that is easy on the eyes. Engaging with other photographers and potential clients is also super important!

I love following @laurenscotti, @justinemontigny, and @michellelillywhite. They all have INSANELY good work that I constantly look at for inspiration.

My most popular photo on Instagram is a close up of bridesmaids laughing with their bouquets! I think it did really well because my main audience is girls, and that photo is total girl power. Like, if you wanna be my lover you gotta get with my friends type of photo.

 

Olguin Photography@olguinphotography

Instagram has been a huge part of our success in gaining new leads with potential brides. But it’s also been instrumental in getting our name out in the wedding community with different vendors, online blogs, and magazines.

One of the tips we can give for photographers who are wanting to grow their Instagram account is to start looking at your overall Instagram page. When a potential bride clicks on your Instagram account it HAS to be visually pleasing. We like to think of it as a mini online portfolio in order to give people a taste of what your style is, which then hopefully will get them heading to your website for more. We work so hard on making sure we have our websites looking great, we need to keep our Insta pages looking great too. Alternate your colors, black + whites, dark and light tones and also alternate your frames, tight shots, wide shots etc. Oh, and tag the vendors involved and, of course, everyone knows to use hashtags!

We loooove Ronja and Victor from Muse and Mirror and are definitely inspired by their work because of the way they convey emotion and feel in their Instagram. We’re also inspired by Fer Juaristi for his fun and often quirky approach to his images.

Our most popular posts have been the images that convey emotion and a bit of fun! We believe people engaged with those images because of the overall feel and emotion they convey through color and tones.

Stephanie Rogers@stephanierogersphotography

Instagram is the best tool we use for keeping current and past clients up to date on what we’re doing, reaching potential clients, and networking with other vendors. It’s also a great way to quickly add photos to your portfolio as we all know photographers don’t always have a lot of time to update their website as often as they would like.

Using hashtags has been helpful for meeting other creatives as well as potential clients with local hashtags. Not overloading the hashtags in a spammy way but really finding what fits you, your clientele, and who you want to reach. Also, responding to everyone who comments, whether it’s a like or a response, as everyone likes to connect with the person they went out of their way to compliment. Consistency in posting has been beneficial for us. If we don’t post after a couple days our engagement goes down slightly. While buying followers may be beneficial to some people, in regards to gaining genuine interactions, it’s most important to be patient and have followers that are interested in your work and not your numbers.

We follow several accounts on Instagram based on our love for light and shadows in photography. Here are a few – Magnum Photos, bnw_rose, Alex Webb, and Jacob Loafman.

Austin and Sophia’s wedding portrait was one of our most popular images by a long shot because it landed on the explore page. While there are a lot of factors to take into account (time of day posted, hashtags related to venue/city, etc.), we think the best way to determine its popularity is by reading the comments. The main three things we noticed people loved about the image were the use of light, the elegance of the image, and the bride’s non-traditional wedding dress.

Silque Photography@silquephotography

I love that Instagram allows me to connect with people from all over Australia and the world. There’s so much inspiring content, not only by photographers but lots of creative people in general. It’s like its own little (big) community and such a great way to share work and collaborate with other creatives!

Maintaining your Instagram can be hard work sometimes. Curating your images is very important and remembering to post enough to maintain engagement and keep your work front of mind to potential clients is key. Posting at certain times of the day is also a good way to ensure your post reaches as many people as possible. For example, posting at times when people are driving to and from work or after dinner time when people are at home chilling on the lounge, unwinding for the day.

Everyone knows Dan O’Day’s work, but I have to honestly say his work inspires me so much. There’s no one else like him. I also love the Moments Over Mountains page, which Dan created, which focuses on emotions and moments rather than big mountains and fancy locations. I also love one of my dear friend Thomas Stewart’s page. The way he selects and curates his images is done so beautifully.

My most popular image is a black and white image I took of one of my gorgeous couples walking down a stairwell in a big heritage listed school building. It was candid and I didn’t tell them what to do, instead just documented them wandering the halls and interacting with each other.

Massive thanks to our Instagrammers to follow for sharing their words and imagery with us today!

For more Instagram tips, check out our Guide to Instagram Hashtags.

xoxocarrie5-1

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