2020 has started off with shaking up the whole world. I have in my lifetime, seen anything like this. At first, we thought it was just affecting Wuhan, then some travel industries, but now it has a full-on tsunami domino effect. I know financially the whole world is hit right now, so what can we do to prep? What can we do so we don’t deplete all of our income or savings?

Corinavirus and your photography business
Photo by Fusion Medical Animation on Unsplash

We will be facing a very bumpy road, but I firmly believe if we buckle down, unite, and be proactive, that we will make it through the other side victorious. I also firmly believe this is a time to create, innovate, and elevate.

We need to leave negative nancy locked up and start being a shining light for our community, family, and customers. Whining about it online will only attract well lack, and this is a time for us to smart with our money, smart with our marketing and proactive. I have interviewed some top creative businesses and asked them to share their opinion on how we can elevate our businesses during this time.

P.S News and updates are changing daily so the below may not apply to your current location or situation. It is important to see what your county and state are saying as far as being opened for business etc. 


Lifestyle Northern VA Newborn Photographer, Melissa Arlena shares:

Northern VA Newborn PhotographerFor established photographers, I think now is a great time to take advantage of past clients and reopen galleries to sell prints, albums, etc. Reach out personally to each one if you can and ask them if they ever printed the photos you took for them last year.  Mother’s Day is around the corner, and now is a great time to offer an album special on their last photo session. Make them a great offer and put money in your pocket! 

For new and established photographers, take this time to work on your marketing for the year. You can write out a few blog posts and schedule them out. Pull images from your portfolio to update your website and social media. Schedule out social media posts. Dip your toes into IGTV and going live on FB and IG. Work on your SEO!!!! Take the time now to be ready to hit the ground running once everything is back to normal 


Digital Strategist & Coach Afton Negrea states:

I work with freelancers every day and my advice is always – never stop connecting. As freelancers, we often stay in our  Business Coach for Freelancersown little bubbles, but when tragedy strikes, we have no one to turn to for help, giving us more stress and anxiety (oftentimes that’s completely overexaggerated in our heads). We think we have enough clients or work, but the reality is – enough sometimes isn’t enough.

My advice? Build your network of freelancers who you can rely on – and that gets you out of your own head. They’re a great support network for when things go south and you need an experienced ear. Other freelancers will also have the down-low of new projects and amazing clients who may be interested in your services, giving you more immediate reach when you need it, without having to do endless advertising or social media posting to a cold audience. By deeply connecting with one freelancer per week, you’ll be amazed by how much your business will be supported

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Canadian Photographer & Artist,  Jasalyn Thorne Shares:

Canadia Photographer and ArtistWhat an opportunity to think of how you can offer online resources for your clients and community: an e-book, mini course, skype coaching, anything that doesn’t involve people having to be out in public but still carry on with business.


Connecticut Headshot Photographer Seshu shared this insightful tip on Facebook 

One of the things I’m doing as a photographer is re-watching some of the foundational webinars or courses that will help  https://connecticutheadshots.commy business when we finally emerge from this pandemic. Hat-tip to Zack Arias for his OneLight workshop. I always go back to this when I feel like I’m overthinking off-camera flash photography. I love this idea as we can take a time to learn more and finally finish those photography courses we have postponed.

 

 


Magazine mama founder Cindy Reeves shares:

cindy reevesHere are the top two things I recommend to photographers to weather the slow seasons of their business:

1) Use the time to build your e-mail list so that when your photography business gets busy again, you will have a long list of potential clients to market to. I’ve been through a recession with my wedding photography business in the past. The one thing that kept my business thriving was e-mail marketing.

2) Teach photography classes to bring in additional income during this time.  If you don’t feel comfortable teaching in-person private lessons or small group classes, consider teaching photography online to people in your area. You can find all the lesson plans to teach photography here. 


Andre Ice, Owner of Advertising Agency states:

FB ads expert

This is the time for content creators to truly push the limits of their creativity to use the tools at their disposal to develop content that will strive to provide real actionable value while they have people’s full attention. Understand what people are going through and develop content to meet those needs. Most importantly, don’t use this as a marketing opportunity to capitalize on people’s fear.

I agree with this. This is a time to serve and not cause fear but to be there for your audience!


Miami & Puerto Rico Wedding Photographer Vanessa Velez states:

We are using this time to set up our social media posts and work on updating every aspect of my website, especially now Miami and Puerto Rico Wedding Photographerwith this new reality I think it’s important to highlight how our businesses are prepared to handle any situation. Another thing I have set down to do is complete my marketing study on my contracts and see where my leads/referrals are coming from so I can improve and strengthen  those relationships”

 


Charlotte Newborn Photographer, Meredith-June shares:

charlotte newborn photographerSince I run my business/studio as ‘appointment only’ I am hoping that I will be able to keep my previously booked clients ( but given recent news I am not sure that will be possible) and potentially still book later due dates and summer sessions.

It is scary as a small business and the primary income producer for our family, but I am confident this will all soon be a distant memory as the weather warms up and the virus is (hopefully) under control. During my downtime I am excited to work on things that I have always pushed to the side because I’m too busy! Some ideas are kickstarting a passive income stream, barreling down on my “side hustle” and continuing to put out content as usual for my photography business. I will also update the galleries on my website and comb through to make any changes needed there.

 


Tash from Wisdom and Courage

Tacoma PhotographerWho also has a great blog post about being home with family and working during the quarantine.https://www.wisdomandcourage.com/post/family-lockdown-how-to-survive-a-corona-virus-quarantine

What a gift time is and it is usually something we never have enough of, as a small business owner, here are a few more things you could do during this time:⁣
💡 refresh your website/marketing materials
💡 pin content to Pinterest or blog⁣
💡update your pricing
💡do an online course or revisit courses you have previously invested in ⁣
💡recycle old paperwork or contracts ⁣
💡create a newsletter⁣
💡come up with a passive income idea
💡dream up a new business idea
💡come up with an emergency preparedness notebook for your business ⁣
Take a moment to select one thing on the list and do all you can to finish and complete one task at a time as to not overwhelm yourself.

Miami Food Blogger Kristine from Honey I’m Gouda shares:

miami food bloggerHonestly, my creative business has been COMPLETELY put on standby by this Coronavirus situation so I would say my honest quote is, “sometimes emergencies happen and this is precisely the reason why you should have emergency funds as a business owner for backup when work completely comes to a halt.”
All we can do is hope for the best and pray this passes quickly. Preparedness is oftentimes overlooked, but I am always ready for a financial disaster if it arises. 

Karlene Scarlett is the Founder, Social Media Coach and Strategist of Social Blessings, LLC shares:
As a second-year first-time small business owner, this is a time pivotal time not only for our country but for our community. Just like you, I have 500+ unread emails with the subject line: A special message for our customers…we really care about your well being.
social media consultant
To be proactive, I picked up the phone and actually called my clients to check-in and offer ways I can help. I scheduled one-on-one meetings free of charge to discuss a Contingency Social Media Marketing Plan for their businesses. Thankfully, I work with some of the smartest local business owners who already reached out to their financial advisors for assistance.
If both you and your clients believe your services are making a difference, they will fight to keep you on.
Yes, we can all use this downtime to sharpen are skills, catch up on podcasts or invest in a course. But the reality is…rent is due on the 1st of the month and FPL could care less if your name is Corona.
My best advice is to try to focus on your current clients and reach out to your community partners and ask how you can help support them.
90% of my clients are word-of-mouth referrals because I always deliver something extra without any expectations in return. If you take care of them now by even a simple “brainstorming consultation” to put thought-starters in their ear. Trust me, you’ll be top of mind once the storm weathers.
– Karlene Scarlett is the Founder, Social Media Coach and Strategist of Social Blessings, LLC. A fully remote social media agency that offers virtual one-on-one social coaching, consultations, and done-for-you social media management services. https://socialblessingsllc.com/

South Florida Blogger who teaches SEOSEO For Photographers & Creatives, Feuza Reis Shares:

Okay, that was weird to write that but here we go. I just did a FB live where I shared a lot of my insights on what we can do during this time. Here are a few of them.

Update Blog Posts or Start Blogging

Believe it or not, this is a fantastic time for SEO. Why? Because people are home surfing the web more so than ever. They are bored. They want to be entertained and dream. They now have to dream about their canceled event or travel plans. Perhaps they are missing their favorite restaurant and will try a new recipe. People are online. SEO is hot. Many things are trending now. So if you want to be proactive and get ahead of the marketing game, ride the SEO wave. 

Photo by Kevin Bhagat on Unsplash

Audit your website

I had a client recently who got scared of the lack of inquiries. This was before the Covid19 outbreak. So I asked if her forms were working and she told me, yes, she had tested it and her form was just fine. Then we started reviewing some of her content and SEO when I noticed that her link to the contact pages from her main pages was not working. Voila, this was a big problem. We set our websites aside and forget to recheck things. Watch this video to learn some things you should be checking for on your photography website audit. If you need SEO consulting, my consulting is currently on sale. Email me today for more info, [email protected]

Plan Your Social Posts

This is the perfect time to plan ahead. Look at the marketing calendar and holidays to come and create some social media content. If you are in social curator, that is a great way to plan out a full month’s worth. I like to schedule some photoshoots of myself, even if it’s with myself so I have the content laid out for the month to come. This video here also offers great tips on how to that.

coronavirus and photography business
Photo by alex bracken on Unsplash

The key here is that you are not leaving this for the last minute, we want to be consistent with our online presence so scheduling social media posts is key.

Try Pinterest

Pinterest marketing is a great tool for local businesses. Again people will be daydreaming more than ever now so ride the wave. Create new pins of past blog posts and pin them, also pin all of your new content. Make sure your current boards all have their categories chosen and descriptions filled out. When pinning your own content, make sure you write a great full description of your pin and try adding a call to action too.

Photo by Webaroo on Unsplash

Optimize your SEO

Now is a great time to dig through your website and check on your pages and blog posts. Log into Google Analytics and see what the top pages are and make sure your money pages are fully optimized for SEO. One great tip for blog posts is to make sure they have H2’s for formatting and SEO.

For more ideas and tips, catch the replay of my Free Live Training I did on FB page.

Also, sign up for the workbook checklist here.

My e-store is currently 30% off in order to assist some of the SEO items you may need help with. Use code COVID19.

SEO & Blogging Classes worth checking out are:

Google My Business Bootcamp

2020 Blogging SEO Bootcamp 

Blogging SEO Masterclass

Local SEO Academy

Do you have any other business, marketing tips during this crazy time? Please share below.

Feuza Reis