How do you keep track of everything once your business starts taking off?
Between proposals, client communication, planning shoots, shooting, editing, delivering, and even boring stuff like tax information, you have a lot of tasks on your plate as a brand photographer.
I get it. And while it might be feasible to handle it all yourself with just a few clients, it quickly becomes unmanageable as your business grows.
That’s why I rely on a handful of business and photography tools that automate much of my workflow. This allows me to handle more clients (more money!) and frees up more time for my family.
Check out 5 of my favorites here!
1. Honeybook | Keep up with your business
Do you feel frazzled by responding to inquiries, getting proposals out quickly, or keeping track of all 427 tasks you have this week?
Yes? Well, Honeybook takes away all of that stress. This CRM takes some time to set up initially, but once you get the ball rolling, you will gain all that time back and more.
Start with contact forms in Honeybook that allow you to glean the most important information from clients at first contact. Then, with your email templates, packages, pricing, and more in place, you can throw together and send over a proposal in seconds. This speed is essential for winning clients and closing the deal.
Honeybook also handles signing contracts, accepting payments, scheduling meetings or calls, gift cards, and so much more. Practically the only thing it can’t do is bring you a cup of coffee!
2. CameraBits Photo Mechanic | Cull images quickly
Have you ever wondered how other photographers cull through thousands of images so quickly? This is how they do it — with CameraBits’ amazing Photo Mechanic software.
They boast about being the world’s fastest digital photo handler and I believe it. Rendering times while jumping between photos is nearly non-existent so you can move through and flag your keepers quickly.
View a contact sheet of multiple photos and instantly get a closer look with their super-fast preview window. You can even jump in to 100% to check focus without waiting for the image to load like in Lightroom or other photo editing software.
You can also upload photos from multiple memory cards simultaneously, add metadata, compare photos side-by-side, and more. This program is an invaluable tool for speeding up your workflow tremendously!
3. Backblaze | Never loose your files
You know you’re a photographer when your nightmares are filled with data loss.
What would you do if your computer died and you lost all your images from a shoot? Whether you’re a food photographer, commercial photographer, or any kind of photographer, this would be tragic.
This actually happened to me once when one of my external drives died. It wasn’t the disaster it could have been because I had Backblaze. Read more about that story here.
This cloud-based backup system stores all the information in my computer safely in the cloud. All my images, Lightroom files, Photoshop files, important client documents, and more are safely tucked away where computer failure or dead hard drives can’t destroy them.
Plus, I can access this information from anywhere if need be, which is super handy!
4. Later | Plan ahead and save time
Keeping up with posting on your social media can feel like a full-time job by itself. Thankfully, Later makes the whole process so much faster and easier.
Sit down at once and plan out a week or months’ worth of Instagram, Pinterest, or other platform posts. Then, Later will post them for you at the times you chose. Alternatively, you can set it so that Later sends you a reminder at the scheduled time for greater control over the post.
See what your Instagram grid will look like to help keep your brand look cohesive. Plus, photographers who work in personal brand photography and the like will find this handy for showing their clients how to use their images best.
5. Google Docs | Get organized
Google Docs makes managing documents super easy. I use it for planning and the sharing features make it easy to collaborate with clients throughout this process.
It’s also useful for document storage, managing client files, delivering videos, and so much more.
The best part about Google Docs is that this super helpful tool is free to use!
Streamlining Your Workflow
As photographers, most of us don’t want to spend most of our time managing our businesses. We want to do what we love, which is to be creative and take pictures.
All of these tools help streamline the workflow for advertising photographers, product photographers, and any type of photographer. Don’t let yourself get bogged down in the business side of things. Use these tools to help you free up your most important asset — time.
Then, take that time to do what you do best, make money, and spend more time with your family to boot!