A proper set of resources are necessary to manage any business. The kind of resources differs from business to business, though. For a hugely dependent company on its sales, robust CRM is the first requirement. For manufacturing units, ERPs keep them operating at a standard level. Similarly, if you are a freelance photographer or run a photography business, specific resources are essential. Some might help you do better at what you do. Striking the right balance is paramount; there are new options every day, and better, smarter tools are being released at a fast pace. What you need is the right mix of resources that will keep you functioning in the industry for a long time and have the flexibility to adapt to changes with the coming times.
Managing and transferring large uncompressed files
WeTransfer is an incredible tool to send and receive large files over email. You can send up to 2GB of data for free. Photographers have to send large files to their clients or editors on almost a daily basis. Normal mailing channels such as Gmail and Hotmail limit your attachment sizes to 25GB. Photographers need reliable channels to safely and quickly deliver their files, and WeTransfer helps you do just that. You can also purchase the Pro version of WeTransfer. Once you go pro, you get a whopping one terabyte of storage space, 20GB worth of transferring flexibility, option to make your transfer password-protected, ability to delete and resend your transfers, and much more.
As a photographer, proper management of those large, uncompressed photographs is crucial. Things can get cluttered pretty soon if you don’t sort your works in an orderly fashion. When you store your files on your local system, there is always the danger of a single point of failure. That’s one reason why cloud storage is gaining so much popularity. Dropbox offers the best solution to file storage problems. If you are working with a team or just want to share your work with potential clients, Dropbox is the right choice. Even under the rare chance of losing your files, the cloud platform has recovery tools that work well. Dropbox has two paid options, ‘Plus’ and ‘Professional’. The former offers 2 TB of space, and the latter provides 3 TB storage with added options.
Like Dropbox, Google Drive allows you to store your files on their servers. The added benefit here is that you gain quick access to other applications developed by Google; Sheets, Docs, and, of course, Gmail. It is effortless to integrate these applications and share files and documents with your contacts. However, the free storage space offered in the beginning is pretty low; 15 GB. You can increase this storage space by paying, of course.
Scheduling Tasks and Project Management
Trello is a simple, drag and drop tool for managing your project. You can share the workspace with your team and assign tasks to them. Making lists of to-do tasks is easy, and you and your staff can move these tasks from one plan to another. The platform is free to use as well. You can sync your project to any device and make workflows easy to comprehend.
Also Read: Choosing the right camera gear for your photography business is also essential for growth. Here’s an excellent resource on camera gear from Signature video group to read.
Managing and Scheduling Appointments
With Acuity, your clients can easily see the available slots when you can work. They can book appointments via this platform. The entire process is seamless. Acuity Scheduling lets you focus on other, more important stuff. With the free version, you can get one user access and manage one location only. Paying for Acuity is worth it, though. You can embed the scheduler in your websites and get clients to book appointments from there itself.
Portfolio Hosting and Content Management System
Pixpa is a content management system designed specifically for photographers. The platform has stunning themes that you can use on the portfolio website you created through Pixpa. The ‘Client Galleries’ feature lets you share and sell your works with your clients. Pixpa offers so much more than it meets the eye. The pricing is also pretty convenient and ideal for any photography business type.
Squarespace is better than most hosting services for a very simple reason; it does not compromise quality. You get what you pay for. Quickly purchase a domain and get started with Squarespace within a few minutes. Photographers must have a digital portfolio and Squarespace lets you do that with a few easy clicks. The company also offers gorgeous templates and themes.
With WordPress, you have two options; you can host your portfolio website on the hosting servers provided by WordPress itself, or you can use the CMS and host it somewhere else. WordPress has been around for long enough for people to realise its flexibility and robustness. WordPress platform is not simple to use as Pixpa or Squarespace, but the amount of flexibility you get is spectacular; you can develop any sort of WordPress website if you know how to work with CMS and plugins! The development is also not very technical, and you can get started within a few hours. There are thousands of plugins and themes that can be imported to buff up your portfolio. The community is strong and support is readily available.
Bulk Mailing and Mailing Campaigns
Although MailChimp is popular for bulk mailing and running email campaigns. The platform offers so much more than this. MailChimp suites have almost everything that is required to run your photography business. Even with the free version, you gain access to resources such as CRM, A/B testing, and multiple mailing templates. There are more options as you climb up the paid plans; dynamic content management, building your websites via in-built tools, scheduling and running vast campaigns, the list can go on. You can check out the pricing here and choose the plan that is best suited to your requirements depending on the kind of work you do and how big your business is.
FreshBooks for Photographers
Monitoring your finances using Freshbooks is easy and quick. Freshbooks is cloud-based, so security is not an issue. The user interface is fantastic, as well. You can sign up for the trial that lasts for 30 days. If you do not like spending time on invoices and expense reports, Freshbooks is the way to go.
And if you are more interested in growing your photography business then check out these photography courses, it will definitely help you a lot.
Photography requires level-headedness and room for growth. The discipline relies highly on creativity and deriving inspiration from the right sources. When things like unpaid bills, stuck invoices, and cluttered drawers get in the way, you cannot unleash your full potential. The resources mentioned on this list are designed to take care of these problems and let you do what you do best; capture stunning photographs.