INTERVIEW BY JENNIFER RICKARD - FOUR J PHOTOGRAPHY
Q: How long have you been in business? Where are you located?
A: I have been in photography for 15 years. I started out doing everything from pets to Bar Mitzvas to families. As soon as I photographed my first senior, I knew that’s all I wanted to do and never looked back. That was 7 years ago.
I have a studio in Evansville, Indiana on the property where I live and it was converted into a studio space from a old barn!
Q: What is a photography skill you consider yourself to be good at?
A: I pride myself on being able to bring out my client’s personality and capture it on camera. I really try to make an effort to get to know each of my clients and do something different or unique with each one. Whether it is a fabulous property or location, sentimental props, or a big personality I like to make sure each of my seniors has something really amazing to add to their images.
Q: How do you use Instagram to influence and grow your business?
A: Throughout the year, I host model shoots with specific and fun themes, then use them strategically for content and to build buzz onInstagram. Some past themes I have used are fall, pumpkins, and football. I also like to post my most attention-grabbing images from my styled or senior sessions.
Q: How many senior models or reps do you have? What do you find is the best way to organize shoots with their hectic schedules?
A: I have done larger groups in the past but have found a smaller group are easier to coordinate. I also enjoy getting to know my models and find that I get more authentic connections with a small group.
Currently I have10 senior models. Group texting is best way for me to plan sessions, plan meet and greets and stay in touch with the smaller group.
Q: What is your favorite piece of software that is key to running your senior business?
A: Probably for me it would be Pro Select. It revolutionized the way I do in person sales. It helps to show how the client’s images will look on the walls in their own home. It makes the visual decisions more streamlined.
That plus a big screen tv! Both increased my sales from the very first time.
Q: Are you a photography rule follower or rule breaker.
A: For sure a rule breaker!! As long as you know the rules it is totally fine to break the rules. I love to post the rule-breaking images on Instagram.
Q: What is one of the best tips for a new senior photographer trying to grow their business.
A: Figure out that one thing that sets you apart from everyone else and run with it. That really is big. How can you up your experience and always make yourself stand out from the rest? Unique locations, innovative posing, a style closet-anything in your business that can set you apart and add value to your senior experience!