Are you overwhelmed with trying to stay on top of your never ending task items? Is your photography business taking over your life? We used to have this problem of great customer service in the spring, and major issues during the fall when (lots) of little pieces fell through the cracks. Pretty much after Labor Day, we would be completed swamped and totally overwhelmed. And then we got ShootQ.
Technically, nothing much happened until we got our ShootQ system set up. This is key. ShootQ is an AMAZING software for photographers. It really and truly is like having a part-time Studio Manager that never forgets what they are supposed to do, provides every client with consistent service and keeps you well organized.
While it does take time to get it set up and running, it’s well worth it. It’s a HUGE time saver. If you are just starting your business, I recommend starting with Shootq. It’s the kind of system I wish we had when we started. We would have saved HUNDREDS of hours each year that we could have put back into marketing, or just date nights. Or how about time for your photography?
The thing about running a photography studio, it really eats away at your free time. No one tells you how many evenings will be spent in consultations, engagement sessions and post production. Weekends? Forget it. Those are reserved for clients. Weddings, portrait sessions, engagement sessions, and often consultations for those clients who can’t make it in during the week all happen during the weekend.
By getting a system like Shootq right away, you are setting your studio up for long term success. And seriously, you are protecting your marriage. The time saved down the road can be put back into family time, pursuing your art for yourself or having a well-balanced life. With photography, that’s always a challenge and a balancing act.
Highlights of some of the many time savers & problem solvers we've experienced with ShootQ:
- Contracts get signed and paid much quicker. There’s no waiting and hoping it’s actually in the mail.
- Invoicing happens automatically. Meaning we get paid much more regularly, and there’s little need for phone calls and email reminders.
- No more dealing with expired credit cards-the client is responsible for making sure payment goes through. If their card doesn't work, the payment isn't accepted. This alone has been quite a time-saver.
- Clients get consistent service-all those great emails that we intend to send to brides but seem to just simply fall through the cracks during oh, right about August. Everyone gets every email we intend, so all our clients are equally informed about what to wear to their engagement sessions, why we think they should consider a first look, thanked, etc. We even send everyone a happy anniversary email-because it’s automated.
- Vendor database-shootq collects the vendor data for each wedding, so we know who we are working with, who to send prints to later etc. Helps us build stronger vendor relationships.
- The client inputs the vendor contact info (don’t tell them, but our brides build our vendor database for us!)
- Album cover questionnaire goes out at the right time, explaining options, pricing and cover swatches. We used to be moments from placing the album order, only to realize we hadn't gotten the cover selections.
- Keeps track of all the task items related to each shoot or product. Since it’s a template workflow that we check off when putting the contract together, it’s consistent. Steps are not forgotten. This is huge for wedding photographers during your busy season. Things just tend to fall through the cracks at certain busy times.
- Leads are organized and easy to keep track of. You can send follow ups from your iPhone if you want to.
- Makes it possible to go paperless (along with the help of a scanner). Because everything is online, we were able to stop having paper files for each client. Everything is organized online, accessible from anywhere. This was great when we were in Toronto for a couple weeks last year. I received pending contracts, I signed them and it was a done deal.
Hopefully that gives you a taste of what is possible. It does take an initial investment of time to get set up and even to wrap your mind around the system. Currently ShootQ has minimal training materials available, so I strongly recommend signing up for one of the personalized training sessions, it is going to be money well spent. The results are going to be well worth it, I can assure you.
This system is fantastic for photographers just starting out as well as seasoned pros. If you are looking for a solution to the many problems of running your photography business on a day to day basis, this is the time to consider ShootQ. It's an incredible system which will do so much more than just the things I've listed here. It's really and truly amazing.