March 3, 2020
Depending on where you live and what type of photography you do, most photographers experience a busy season and an off season. Which sometimes feels like the worst, but it really can be a major blessing in disguise! After several years in business, I’ve come to learn that my “off season” is the months of November, February, and March. I usually still have shoots during these months (as least I hope for them), but the volume of shoots is significantly less than my wedding season, which is April-October, and then December-January for winter weddings. So first things first, if you’re new to this business, plan for slower seasons and save money for them! Otherwise it can be quite a shock to possibly go several months without a paycheck.
Here are 5 things that you can do for your business to have a super productive off season!
Update your Website and Client Materials
You just finished off a full wedding season and you haven’t touched your website in months, I see you. Me too! Take some time to add updated images and wording to your website as well as your client and branding materials! Or create client and branding materials if you haven’t already. Things like Bridal guides, location / style guides, pricing information, business cards, client gifts, etc. During this time I also like to brainstorm my overall client experience, and create a plan for serving my couples in my next wedding season.
Blogging + Content Creation
Do not underestimate the power of blogging. I used to be a skeptic, and I hated doing it. But I’ve been blogging consistently for a year now, and my online presence and SEO has been boosted drastically! I really believe all that work has been worth it, so I recommend giving it a try if you haven’t, and if you have, take this time to schedule out your blog posts months in advance. When wedding season is in full swing, blogging is the first thing to get kicked off the to-do list for me. So I like to take the time during my off-season to write as many blog posts as I can. 1-2 posts a day if when possible! And schedule them out for the summer months so I have consistent content during that crazy time.
Pro-tip: Recycle, recycle, recycle. You’re already spending all that time writing and creating your blog content, so use that to your advantage! Copy and paste paragraphs for your instagram posts, and use the topics that are scheduled each week to talk about on your instagram stories!
I love diving into some juicy education, especially when I have hours and hours and hours to sit and do so. Some of my favorite courses that I’ve invested in are Amy and Jordan’s Posing course, The Katelyn James Business Collection, Kylee Ann’s 90 Days of Marketing, and Amy and Jordan’s business course. I love to take lots of notes and brainstorm how I can implement all of my new knowledge into my next wedding season.
Styled Shoots + Collabs
If you are looking for a serious cure of the winter blues, get out of the house. Meet up with fellow creatives and wedding industry peeps in your area! Because they’re most likely experiencing the same slow season that you are. Attend and/or put together styled shoots to keep your creative juices flowing and keep that fresh content coming. Shoot for yourself, for what inspires you.
Take a Break
Take a break. Seriously! Take a week, or two.. or three, and just step away and take a deep breath. Enjoy time with your family and unwind from some of that end of season burn-out that we all experience. Still hop on your computer to respond to any new inquiries, but other than that just set everything down. If you’re someone who doesn’t really experience an off-season, or you don’t have a time where you could easily take a couple weeks off, schedule it for yourself in advance. Choose a couple weeks and don’t book anything for that time. Set aside some savings so you don’t miss a paycheck that month, and create your own off-season. It’s so refreshing to start shooting again when you’ve been away from it for a little while, it’s like a whole new spark of passion!