When you run your own business you have a lot on your plate. As a photographer you are often inundated with photo shoots, bookings, editing, paperwork and providing a great client experience, not to mention having a life of your own. This leaves very little time for building the business. So here are 15 things you can do in ten minutes or less to build your business.
RESPOND TO ONE LENGTHY EMAIL
Client emails are often lengthy; filled with questions and requests so take ten minutes to answer one thoroughly. Make sure you cover all their questions and add in any information you think will be useful or enhance the client experience. For tips on proper email etiquette click here.
RESPOND TO COMMENTS ON YOUR BLOG AND SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNELS
Take ten minutes to respond to any comments that you’ve received on your blog or social media channels in the past week. It’s important to interact with your readers and clients on a regular basis so make sure you check in with them regularly.
COMMENT ON SOMEONE ELSE’S BLOG
Much like the point above it’s important to interact with others in your industry and community. Take ten minutes to read and comment on a peer’s blog post. Try to write something thoughtful and worthwhile rather than just; ‘hi I’m a baby photographer too, check out my website’.
FOLLOW FIVE INSPIRING BLOGGERS OR BUSINESSES ON TWITTER OR INSTAGRAM
It takes a few minutes to follow some inspiring businesses on Twitter and Instagram but can do a huge amount for your motivation and company. By following and supporting your peers and others in your industry you are opening yourself up to new ideas, different point of views and a huge amount of inspiration.
MAKE A TO-DO LIST
Whether you love them or hate them, lists are an important part of staying sane. Take a few minutes to put your thoughts down on paper and make a plan of attack for tomorrow. This will make you feel more relaxed and motivated the next day.
WRITE DOWN ONE THING YOU’VE BEEN DOING WELL THIS WEEK AND ONE THING YOU COULD IMPROVE ON
When you’re self-employed it’s easy to ignore the small successes. Take a few moments to write down one thing you’ve been doing well this week. Have you replied to every email within 24 hours? Perhaps you managed to put something out on social media every day without fail? It doesn’t matter how trivial the successes seem, it’s important to celebrate them. Equally make a note of any little downfalls that have happened this week. Did you procrastinate a little too long the other day? Could that blog post have been a little less rushed? Whatever the little issues were, write them down and think of a way to conquer them next week.
It’s hard to feel motivated and raring to go if you don’t have a good working environment. Taken ten minutes to straighten out your desk, tidy your desk drawers, sort through your paperwork or clear out your computer files.
DOUBLE CHECK AND PAY FOR YOUR WEBSITE DOMAIN NAME
Take ten minutes to check and pay for your website domain names. Note down when they expire, if they auto-renew or if you have to pay manually. You don’t want your website to go down or lose your domain name altogether because it has expired.
SEND AN EMAIL TO A PAST CLIENT
Take a few moments to send a thoughtful email to one or two past clients. You could kindly ask them for a testimonial to go on your website or to inform them of a current offer they might be interested in.
DO SOME NUMBER CRUNCHING
It only takes a few moments to note down your monthly cash flow. Make sure you include your income and expenses. This will help tremendously when tax time rolls around.
MAKE SOME GOALS
Set some goals for the upcoming month. Think about how many blog posts you want to write, how many bookings you want to receive, how many pageviews you’re aiming for etc. Make a note of them all so that you know what to aim for next month.
SEARCH FOR SOME INSPIRATION
Check out magazines, Pinterest or even other blogs to find some motivation and inspiration. You might come across a new style, photographic method or business idea you want to try out or perhaps even find someone you want to collaborate with.
CREATE AN EMAIL TEMPLATE
It takes ten minutes to create and email template that you can use in the future. The template could be a response to a booking request or common inquiries from potential clients. Try to make it as thorough as possible so that you can fill in the gaps quickly and effectively when a client contacts you. This will make your response time quicker and your time management more effective.
SCHEDULE SOCIAL MEDIA
Take a few moments to schedule your social media for the upcoming week. You can use software such as Hootsuite, Buffer or CoSchedule to plan your social media in advance, therefore saving you time in the long run.
EMAIL A BLOG
Take ten minutes to email 2-3 blogs about guest posting on their site. For example if you’re a wedding photographer you could submit your work to a blog such as Style Me Pretty, Love My Dress etc. Make sure you include post ideas and a link to your business to make you stand out.
EMAIL A PEER OR A SUPPLIER
Email one or two businesses that you would like to collaborate with in the future. Remember to link to your website, blog, social media channels etc. This is also a chance to start a referral circle. Equally you could email a supplier from a recent event offering to share your images with them.
What are the little things you do to grow your business?