It is a difficult time for wedding photographers in 2020. Wedding bookings, for the time being, have postponed or canceled. Many couples in the United States have shifted their wedding dates to 2021, leaving wedding photographers without thousands of dollars of anticipated income for the rest of the year. So, how can wedding photographers keep cash flowing into their business during COVID-19?
Wedding Album Design
One major way that photographers upsell their wedding packages is to offer album design. If you are not already offering albums to your clients, now is the time to go back to clients and offer album design as a service. For clients from the last year, this is a particularly important product to engage them with.
Let them know that you are doing album design services and would love to create a special heirloom for their family. If you already offer album design, and your clients still have not purchased an album, now is the time to remind them of your services. Make sure to calculate your cost of doing business and factor that into the album design that you choose to propose to clients.
Offer Printed Images for Weddings and Engagements
Whether you print your own images or use a print-on-demand service for your clients, now is the time to remind your clients to purchase prints. Many people are working on their interior decor during the pandemic. Remind them that their wedding for engagement photos would look fantastic on their wall. Offering prints is a great way to supplement income during COVID-19.
Ask Postponing Clients to Pay on Their Original Payment Schedule
If your clients are pushing their celebrations all the way out into 2021, consider asking them to stay on the same payment schedule for 2020. Not all clients are going to be able to do this with the nature of the crisis, but some of them will be able to accommodate.
You can also offer, in exchange, some sort of barter in return. Whether that barter is to offer them an additional hour at no cost on their wedding day, some prints after the wedding, or something else that would be important to them, figure out what you can offer clients in exchange for them helping to keep your business afloat.
Branch Out Into Elopements
It’s suggested that elopements and micro-weddings are going to become much more popular in the coming months and potentially years. Start tailoring your portfolio to elopements for potential clients to find you. If you have any city hall weddings or elopements in your portfolio to share, you’re already ahead of the game.
Let people know that you are offering elopement photography for couples who are looking to have an intimate elopement or a micro wedding. You must distinguish this type of photography from just wedding photography. Clients are specifically searching for elopements right now as opposed to weddings.
When Social Distancing Restrictions Ease, Start Looking at Doing Engagement Shoots
When the restrictions in your area begin to ease a little more, consider doing engagement shoots once again. This can help you keep a steady cash flow in your business. Let people know when you start opening up for engagement shoots again. Many people are looking for ways to support small businesses right now. This is a great way for your clients and brand advocates to help support your business.
Be sure, of course, to take precautions very seriously when you are doing your engagement sessions. Wear a mask and ask your clients to come wearing a mask. They should only take it off for their photos. You can even get some fun photos while they’re wearing a mask!
Doing engagement photography sessions during this time can be done once restrictions start to lift in your area. It’s important to keep doing them safely. You must be able to keep your client safe and well and make sure not to spread illness through your engagement photography sessions.
Try Out Different Photography Niches You Can Shoot From Home
Reach out to local businesses to see if they need product or food photography for their delivery services. You can offer them a discounted rate in exchange for helping to build up your portfolio. If you’ve ever been curious about food, product, or still life photography, now is your chance to learn. If you have a good rapport with some local businesses, this will be easy for you to start connecting with people on. It’s a way for businesses to stick together in this time of crisis.
Try Out FaceTime Photo Shoots
Offer discounted FaceTime photo sessions. You obviously cannot charge the same amount as you could for, say, an engagement session. But what you can do is offer to document this time in people’s lives. Try out a FaceTime photo shoot to commemorate this bizarre and strange time for couples who are engaged and stuck in the house together.
Offer one or two of your couples the opportunity to do this for free, and create your FaceTime portfolio that way. In exchange, you will be able to use the images to market these remote photo sessions. This is a fun and creative way to keep some cash flow in your business.
Don’t Give Up on What You Love.
It can be really difficult to try to persevere through this challenging time as a wedding photographer. Try to find ways to keep moving forward as a business owner. We don’t know what the future of celebrations is going to look like, but what we do know is that people will always want to get married one way or another. The most that we can do is to adapt and figure out how we can serve the needs of our potential clients.
Communicate with your clients and let them know that you’re there for them. When it comes to your business, things can be tough, and you may end up looking for alternative sources of income. But while you are doing so, consider these ways to create cash flow in your photography business during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Being postponed is one thing but many are all together cancelled. I was told that City Hall kept open for weddings only and they had an unbelievable growth rate. A masked official, two masked witnesses, the masked couple and withing 10 minutes you are married. Certificate will be mailed AND emailed as PDF.
Couples find themselves married and still have $25k (at least) of the wedding budget. Since there is nowhere to go, it will most likely go as a down payment for a new home.
A win-win for them, huge lose for us :-(.
There is always need for truck drivers...I just need to get my licence.