Bringing you the next instalment of GotPhoto’s monthly feature – Professional Tips with Erica Morrow, lead photographer and owner of Slow Road Photo. Each month Erica will bring you her view from behind the camera as she snaps thousands of kids and the new school year unfolds.
In this month’s blog, Erica considers how she maintains a work-life balance in the holiday season and the ways that GotPhoto has helped her do so this year.
The Honour of Catching Those Nostalgic Moments
At the risk of sounding cheesy, I must confess that I really do believe that December is the most wonderful time of the year. Maybe it’s the permission to indulge nostalgia with return visits warm family memories from my childhood. Maybe it’s that sense of magic that hides just under the surface of the everyday business of life as I experience this season through the eyes of my own children.
In my work as a photographer, I always feel the most passionate about my work in December, as I think of the responsibility and honour I have to help families capture what I call the “slow road moments”, the here and now in their families lives. These are the days that their children will hopefully reflect back on with that same nostalgia and warmth I feel when I flip through my old albums or hear a song that sparks a memory. Photographer friends, we are the memory keepers for these families, and I see that as an enormous honour.
Using Systems to Help During Busy Periods
While it may be the most wonderful time of year it can also easily become the most frantic. In my business, the demand for mini sessions, family sessions, and school portraits are at a peak in the fall, which means that even yesterday I was at my computer editing and delivering more galleries, just in the nick of time for families to purchase photo cards to deliver and gifts to give their loved ones. As I constantly look for ways to increase productivity (working smarter not harder is a real thing!), I have been abundantly grateful for the systems that help me manage my workflow and deliver photos to families in a way I can be proud of!
It’s no secret that I love GotPhoto. And at this time of year, I love it all the more. On Black Friday, we sent a newsletter to all the potential buyers in all of my jobs set up through GotPhoto to announce a 15% sale on all photo products and digitals, and I continue to have new orders come through because of it. Even families who placed orders the first time around are ordering again! It was the easiest income I earned all year since everything was already set from earlier in the fall – I just got to sip my morning coffee and watch as families placed new orders.
Spend More Time With Family and Less At The Monitor
I also ran all of my fall mini sessions through GotPhoto. I offered four different mini session events, and set up each session day as a job in GotPhoto. I photographed the families who came using the QR codes, just as I would with a school job. And then when it was time to upload and deliver galleries, I could offer discounts, send automated communications, and allow families to order prints and download digital files through GotPhoto. It was a breeze, and a time saver!
As 2018 winds down and the final automated emails remind customers to place last minute orders, I’m already thinking of resolutions for next year. And one I know for sure is this – I must continue to find ways to use GotPhoto and the other tools in my photography toolbox to simplify my workflow. This time next year, I want to say that I spent even more time by the Christmas tree and less time staring at my monitor. ‘Tis the season to capture photos of other people’s families, but GotPhoto has given me the margin I need to also be a part of the moments with my own family as well.