An Introduction Into Specialization - Sneak Peek
I've been working hard over these last couple of weeks creating a 100% free resource that I could share with you guys here on my website, and it only seemed fitting for me to create something based around the area of specialization and ultimately creating your niche market in your business in order to begin attracting your ideal clientele. This resource that I'm curating will be an introduction into specialization, and I'm hoping to have it up and accessible for you guys by the end of this week. For the time being, I wanted to share a little taste of what specialization is all about, as well as my top 3 tips that you can begin thinking about TODAY that aid in specialization.
There are times when I could honestly talk about branding and specialization for days on end; it’s a topic of business that literally creates a fire in my belly. Specializing changed my life, and that’s not me being dramatic; I honestly believe it to be true. Here is an excerpt from a blog post that I wrote a while ago that I feel fits really well into this one:
“Think of it this way, if you needed major eye surgery would you go and visit a general practising family doctor who does a little bit of everything, OR would you wait a little longer, and pay a little bit more to visit an eye doctor? It’s the exact same with photography; if YOU offer something specialized that your potential clients cannot get elsewhere, then they are going to be willing to pay a little bit extra for your services. If you are a “jack of all trades” photographer who “specializes” in babies, and weddings, and pets, and products, and architecture, then you automatically place yourself into a pool of photographers who are competing to offer lower prices than each other. By shooting everything, you are not at all specialized, which means that when your client is shopping around, they aren’t aware of the unique heart behind the business, they’re just shopping for the lowest cost.”
Specializing what it is that you’re offering as a photographer (or business owner for that matter) can be a terrifying process. Not only is it a hard and slow-going process--especially if it’s one that you venture into alone without guidance--but there’s also the fear that by specializing, you’re narrowing down your prospective pool of clientele. Although the latter may be partially true, it also weeds out the majority of the potential clientele that weren’t right for you in the first place. Specializing your craft is what will essentially separate you from the large group of “all inclusive” photographers, and eventually, you’ll start to attract the clients who believe in the same things that you do.
Like I mentioned at the start of this post, this is a topic that I could honestly talk about for hours on end, and I just feel as though this blog post won’t fully do it justice; nevertheless, I wanted to leave you with a few little pieces of advice regarding specialization. If you do want to talk more about branding and becoming specialized, feel free to check out the “mentoring” tab at the top of my website; coaching others to uncover their purpose as a human being, and thus a photographer, is a big passion of mine, and I’m always up for talking more about it.
Here are the my top THREE specialization tips in a nutshell:
1. Take the time to figure out WHO YOU ARE and WHAT YOU BELIEVE IN. Why are you a photographer? Kind of sounds simple doesn't it? Well trust me, this was one of the toughest questions that I've ever had to ask myself as a business owner, and finding the answer literally took me 4-6 months. If you were sitting next to another photographer in front of an amazing potential wedding couple, what you would tell them (in 3 sentences or less) that would fully separate you from the photographer next to you? What can YOU offer them that nobody else can? What types of weddings do you want to attract/shoot? Why are those types of weddings important to you?
2. What are you doing now to work towards the types of weddings that you want to be shooting full time? We get so wrapped up in shooting anything and everything that we neglect to focus on where we want to end up. What can you do to get your “ideal wedding or couple” out there onto social media and onto your website? Set up a styled session that reflects your brand? Find your “ideal couple” and photograph them for free in order to create content for your website? There are always things that you can be doing to work towards where you ultimately want to end up when it comes to building up your dream brand/direction of your work.
3. If you don’t want to photograph families (or pets, or grads, or weddings, or newborns, or couples, etc etc) then stop posting those images and/or sessions on your social media and website. If people constantly see newborn sessions on your social media or in your portfolio, then you’re going to continue getting newborn session inquiries. If you want to work your way towards shooting only couples--forever and always--then start posting couples--and ONLY couples--on your social media, blog, and website. In time, the other inquiries will taper off, and one day you’ll start receiving 100% inquiries for couple sessions. In essence: don’t post what you don’t want to shoot.
Be sure to keep an eye out either here on the blog or over on Instagram so that you don't miss out when the complete Introduction into Specialization resource goes live. Questions for me? Hit the contact tab, leave them down below, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
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