The expressions “hunker down” and “shelter in place” are about health and safety during the pandemic. Sadly, too many photographers have decided it means to withdraw from EVERYTHING, especially their business.
There are a few things to remember – First, we’re all in this together. You, your family and friends, clients, associates are all dealing with the same anxiety, frustration, and fears. Nobody is alone in what they’re feeling. Second, because we’re all in this together, you’ve got an opportunity to truly stand out and be different from everybody else, and it takes so little.
- Use your phone! Go through your database of customers and pick 6-10 each day to call. Yup – I’m suggesting a LIVE phone call. You’re not selling anything, just being helpful. Find out how they are. Ask if there’s anything you can do. If you’re doing a supermarket run, see if there’s anything they need. You can shop for them and still maintain social distancing.
- Use your blog! Most people are at home, but you can be a part of their lives with great content. Be helpful and especially with parents – give them ideas of things to do.
- Last week in the f64 Lunch Bunch meeting, an attendee suggested taking images of clients and with Photoshop turning them into line-art and sending them coloring book pages for their family. Anybody with young kids will jump at the idea of a project to keep them busy.
- Share tips on being a better photographer. Again, this is about being helpful to people stuck at home.
- I wrote about a FREE app for scanning negatives with your phone in a post earlier in the week. It’s another way to help people stay busy.
- Share gift ideas of things to do with your prints – Imagine the pure joy of a past client with a Bella Art Print or Album idea for a Mother’s Day gift – and you have the images!
- Stay active on Facebook and Instagram! I love using Facebook to keep track of birthdays and anniversaries. Long before the pandemic, I was keeping in touch with friends and associates.
- Are there ways to safely stay active in your community? I know here in Sarasota there’s been a need for volunteers to deliver meals-on-wheels. You can be supportive yet remain within the guidelines of social distancing and give back to your community.
Here’s my point – instead of withdrawing, take advantage of everything you have to communicate with your clients. Nothing I just suggested is going to make you money and replace the lost revenue as a result of the pandemic, but it’s sure going to put you out there as a leader and help you stand out from the crowd!