One of the questions that I am asked the most frequently, both by clients + fellow photographers, is “what is Shoot & Share and what does it mean for your business?” This question is a very important one to me, and I think the answer is even more important. There are a lot of ways to run a successful photography business, but I think that being a Shoot & Share photographer was easily one of the best decisions I made as a business owner.
Shoot & Share is defined as “photographers that focus on service and share the high resolution photos with their clients”. (Check out shootandshare.com for more deets!) but I think that it is so much more than that. In a nutshell, Shoot & Share is a business model for photographers that allow clients to receive high resolution digital files from their sessions (vs. only providing prints and products) and for photographers who know the value in serving + loving their clients. Each and every one of my clients is someone that I LOVE, and someone who will be treated as a FRIEND and not a business client. I don’t have business relationships with my clients. I have REAL relationships, and I think that is SO much more important. I want to be viewed as a PERSON first, and a business owner later. Because that’s what I am. I’m a PERSON. And I want to create REAL, lasting relationships with my clients. I want to encourage them, love them and serve them in a way that they have not experienced from other small businesses. And, personally, I feel like this can’t be done through selling expensive prints and products to all of my clients. I am not a salesman, and I don’t ever aspire to be! I have the upmost respect for all photographers who DO sell prints and products, but I just know that I could never do it! I want all of my clients to be able to freely share the high resolution digital files from their session, because that’s the BEST way to cultivate community and love on your clients! Instead of saying “Yes! You can absolutely have the digital images from your session, but you have to spend $____ on prints and products first” or just not providing digital images at all…I want my clients to ask “Well, how much are digital files?” and I want to be able to say “They cost NOTHING. Because they are included in your session fee. They always have, and always will be”.
Additionally, as a member of the Shoot & Share community, one of the most important values in my business is supporting and empowering new photographers. I don’t EVER want another photographer to less important or unworthy because they’re trying to break into a large industry. I want them to know that we LOVE them and that I am so excited for them and are here to help them every step of the way! This is why, when offering mentoring sessions and workshops, NOTHING is off-limits. I am an open book to any photographers who are willing to invest in me and in their eduction. Because I have NO secrets! I would much rather help another photographer through the hardest times of their business by sharing how I got through it, than to see them suffer the same ways that I did. While I will never claim to know everything or teach things that have not been successful in my business…I will ALWAYS be there to encourage + assist new photographers by teaching from my experiences as a young business owner!
To any photographers who are interested in learning more about what being a Shoot & Share photographer means, please don’t hesitate to email me! You can also add yourself to the Shoot & Share group on Facebook, which is a community of over 18,000 photographers who share the same values and beliefs in their businesses! This community is something that I am so honored to be a part of, and I think that you would too!!