The life of a photographer can be filled with so many beautiful moments. Being selected to capture moments that will be looked back on for years as they become heartfelt memories is an honour we appreciate and don’t take lightly. There’s so much more to being a photographer than just photographing these special moments and as photographers, we know there are some amazing time-saving tools out there that we need to use to really streamline our processes so we can spend less time at our computers and more time behind our lens bringing life to the emotions that bring our clients’ love and connection.
Below are some of my favorite time-saving tools for photographers. Trust me, I’ve done the work and I’ve gone through programs that I thought would save me time when they didn’t. These are my tried and true favorites and I think they will become yours too.
Planoly is incredible for curating your Instagram feed. As photographers, we understand the importance of showcasing our best work in a way that also looks aesthetically pleasing to show the potential clients we have an eye for detail that can be used to capture their small details that showcase their love for their loved ones. Planoly is a visual planner so you are able to drag and drop photos until your grid looks like perfection. You can put in your captions, add in your tags in your caption, and even save hashtag groups. I have a few groups of hashtags saved so each different type of photo I post can have their own unique set without having to spend time adding and removing hashtags every time I post! I have hashtag groups for families, couples, kids, mothers, weddings, and brides just to name a few. If you haven’t tried Planoly, click HERE to give it a whirl.
The main point of most blogs we post as photographers is to showcase our work. We showcase our favorite sessions that speak to our souls, show the sessions that bring us back to what sparked our passion for photography in the first place and feature sessions we hope will resonate with potential clients to encourage them to book! Photo-heavy blog posts are easy to put together with Blogstomp. Blogstomp is a photo collage tool. Upload your photos, select the style of layout, and Blogstomp automatically ‘stomps’ the images together in one easy image to post. Anything that can make blogging easier is a win in my books!
3 –Pixellu Smartslides
Providing clients with a slideshow of their gorgeous images set to beautiful music that compliments the feel of their shoot is one piece of delivery to clients I absolutely love. Pixellu Smartslides has made doing this so simple that any photographer can add this gorgeous feature to their deliverables for each and every client seamlessly today, if you wanted, without having to go through a massive learning curve. Just drag and drop images to upload, add music, then put the images in order. Done. It’s just that simple. A slideshow is a gorgeous way to highlight the images you feel showcase the connection of your clients in a powerful way.
4 – Batch editing in Lightroom
If you haven’t been batch editing in Lightroom, you need to. It’s a simple way to apply the same settings from one photo to all the images from a session that are taken in the same location with similar lighting. Once you batch edit, you can still go into each image and make any final adjustments. I remember when I used to sit at my computer for what felt like ages editing. Batch editing means I can spend less time at my computer editing and more time turning the edited images into gorgeous deliverables, like slideshows, for my clients. You can learn more about how I use Lightroom by taking my course, Embracing the Storm! Learn more about it HERE!
5 – Honeybook
Honeybook removes the hassle from having multiple information packets, contracts and interactive PDF’s to send out manually to each client. Honeybook stores all your contracts, questionnaires, and even hosts payment in a simple sequence format. Once the sequence is triggered, the entire workflow will follow through seamlessly, completely automating the process so you don’t need to monitor contracts, payments and send out information to each client manually and individually. This program has been a lifesaver, removing the time I’m spending at my computer monitoring my inbox. Click this link to give it a try and get 50% off your first year!
6 – Canned Emails
When I was first introduced to canned emails I couldn’t believe I hadn’t been using this amazing feature most of our inboxes already come with. There are some questions we get asked a lot as photographers (pricing, availability, timelines, etc) and taking the time to respond to each person individually can take up a solid chunk of your day. Canned emails are simple; type up the generic response you would give to someone inquiring about the topics you receive most emails about. Save it as a canned response. The next time someone emails with that inquiry, just select a canned response and input the one relevant to the topic. Put in the name of the individual inquiring to personalize it, and instead of sitting there for 5 minutes writing everything out, it took under a minute! I have all my canned emails loaded up into Honeybook so keeping everything quick and efficient is a breeze! I recently added my own personal canned emails to my shop! Take a peak HERE!
7 – Asana
I was recently introduced to Asana and I have fallen in love with the capabilities of this task management tool. Asana is basically a planner and task manager in one. You can create categories for your business or clients, and add tasks to each one with specific dates and deadlines, additional information, and even assign to the task to anyone you are working with. I work with a graphic designer and I have added her to my ‘team’ in Asana. I can assign her work directly in Asana with a deadline, we can communicate back and forth, and she can even upload the final document in Asana too! Emails can get lost, but with Asana, all the communication is saved and available even after you mark a task as ‘complete!’.
8 – My Project Manager, Noella from WellCurated Creative Agency keeps me and my company sane. They help me with marketing, social media, managing my workshops and events and so much more! Have you heard of the 4 hour work week by Tim Ferris?? I might not be at 4 hours just yet but we are working on it!
There are so many wonderful resources available to photographers and taking the time to find the ones that work best for your needs can take time. I hope this list of my favorite tools can help you work more efficiently so you can get back to doing what sparks the fire inside your soul– taking pictures that fully express the unique details of who your clients are in a way that resonates with their souls.
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