Author: Emma Canham

New Year, New You?

I have to admit to not buying into the ‘New Year, New Me’ BS that floats around at this time of year.  I’m more than happy with the old me.

However, the start of the new year does bring optimism.  It also brings a sense of feeling now is the right time to sweep the decks clean and set new targets.  And that’s something I love to do.

If you are feeling some of the ‘new year, new me’ pressure, it’s good to remember that:

A. You should never wait for a specific day or date to make changes.  Why start your diet on a Monday or start selling ‘properly’ from next month?  If you are able to make the change today – then do it, don’t wait!

B. People always overestimate how much they can achieve in a year and underestimate how much they can achieve over five years.

Will all this in mind, here are my top tips for getting your new year off to the best start!

Don’t Increase Your Prices!

It’s not often you hear me saying a price increase is a bad idea. But January is definitely not a good time to do this.  I realise that pricing is an area you’ll be looking at to start the year, but think about it.  January is a ‘sale’ month – a time when businesses slash prices to help clients through the grimmest month of the year.  Not a great time for you to buck the trend and increase yours!  The best time to increase prices is at your busiest period – October time is good.  If you didn’t implement a price increase then, wait until at least March to give clients a chance to get their finances in order after Christmas.  That doesn’t stop you from preparing your new prices and reminding clients an increase is coming.

Write a Plan

Your plan doesn’t need to be fancy or written in a certain format.  But you do need to write it down and this is an excellent habit to get into.  There is lots of research to show you are much more likely to reach goals that you reinforce by writing them down or having them on display.

Work backwards

When I write my plan for the year I like to work backwards.  I like to start with what I want to earn and what I want to save.  Going backwards from that I write down targets for profit and turnover.  Once I have the annual turnover goal I split this down into DAILY targets.  That gives the turnover I need for each working day and how that equates to customer spend.  It’s then easy to work out how many clients I need, how many enquiries I need to generate and how many of those need to convert to clients.  Always be aware that the plan is fluid.  You need to be able to react, predict and adjust your course accordingly.

Vision Boards

Each January I also always create a vision board.  A vision board is a visual representation of the things I’d like to achieve in the next 12 months.  I was in a very low place the first time I made a vision board around 18 years ago.  My business was failing and I was desperate for a solution.  I put many plans into place that year and worked my butt off but I was dumbfounded to find 90% of my vision board had materialised by the end of the year.  I was hooked.

Join Our Vision Board Class

A few of our members have asked me how I make my vision boards so I’m holding a special live class for members this month in our private FB group.  I’ll be showing you exactly how to create a brilliant vision board and you can even make yours along with me.  You can join in the class here   You’ll need to be a subscribing member to get access so if you aren’t a member yet, make this month, the month you make a change, the month you give your business a massive boost by working alongside me – join us here

woman making a vision board for business planning for photographers

Be Kind To Yourself

Those of you who follow this blog probably already know that I have a ‘timetable’ for my week.   You will need to include time for shooting, editing, marketing, social media, networking, business planning, admin and financial tasks/bookkeeping.  BUT before I add my business tasks in, I come first.  I add me time – like my early morning gym visits and then I add family time like school runs, dinner and after school activities.  Because I add these first, I can justify the odd late night or a couple of hours over the weekend.  It’s a brilliant reminder of why I work – so I can enjoy me time.

So are you doing ‘New Year, New Me’ or not?

We’d love to hear how you get the new year off to a great start and if you implement any of these tips, let us know how they work for you.  We always enjoy reading your comments

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Black Friday Round Up

We love a bargain here at The Baby and Newborn Photography Network, and our inbox has been overflowing with offers that are live right now!

We’ve pulled together what we think are some amazing deals out there – we hope you find it useful.

**This post contains affiliate links and we will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on some of the links**

Animoto have 35% off their annual plans – offer open until 4th December

See offer HERE

Shootproof have 40% off their annual subscription

See offer HERE

If you use WordPress for your website and you don’t already have the Yoast plugin, they have a 30% offer for the premium version as part of Black Friday.

We use the premium version and it’s really helpful.

See offer HERE

This is for you if you are confident with using WordPress but want to make your website exactly how you want it, rather than using someone else’s theme. Drag and drop editor with several pre-built elements.

They have 40% off

Bit of a learning curve involved, but if I can do it, pretty much anyone can!

See offer HERE

Creative Live have some amazing offers on in their Black Friday sale. Some of their top selling classes are $29

See offer HERE

17Hats have a Black Friday sale on today too

See offer HERE

If you love saving money, our members make savings EVERY MONTH with their membership to our network.

Check out how much $12.99 is actually worth with our Value Checker HERE

 … Read the rest

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November 2019 Supplier Feature – Bespoke Backdrops

This months supplier feature is Bespoke Backdrops which was founded in 2014. Bespoke Backdrops is run by Lorna Preston and her partner Darren. Lorna Started Bespoke Backdrops in 2014 and has been going strong ever since,  she won small trader of the year at TNPS in 2017 AND 2018! Grab a cuppa and see what Lorna has to say about her business and what makes it special. You can find their website here:

“We offer hand painted canvas backdrops for the fine art photographer. We have 4 different sizes aimed at different needs for photographers shooting any genre and working out of any space.”

“We pride ourselves on the fact that we don’t print anything so each and every one of our backdrops is truly unique to the customer. You literally own your own piece of artwork which is a great selling point to your clients as a photographer.”

“At the moment we offer free shipping to members as a long term offer.

For our week long offer we are able to offer our small sized backdrops normally priced at £75 for £60 to members only. This is instead of our free shipping and no other discounts would apply.

This size is minimum of 5x4ft and is perfect for newborn floor work and also headshots. To find out how to claim your offer please log into the Discount page.

If you sell props what is your biggest seller?

We definitely have a best selling colour which is our WARM BROWN. I think our customers can’t resist the warm undertones and richness of the brown. It photographs like a dream!”

Tell us about the key people in your business. If you are a one man band, let us know how you started your business and why?

“I began as a one man band in 2014 painting backdrops where I could around my photography business. Since then, my partner Darren came on board to help with the work load in 2017. We both offer different textures so our customers get the best of a classic subtle texture or can opt for a bit more grit with my designs.”

“We ship worldwide so no country is out of reach. We also won small trader of the year at TNPS in 2017 & 2018. We currently have a summer special offer running too where you can grab a small backdrop for a £1 with all qualifying orders. All the details are on our website for this.”

“Outstanding service! From beginning of ordering my backdrop to receiving it was so easy. Every message was answered politely and with lots of advice. Honestly I would highly recommend these backdrops to anyone! Absolutely stunning! Thank you so much. Can’t wait to order my next colour.”

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How Having A Listing On Our Photography Directory Can Help With Your SEO

Members  of  our Network automatically get a free listing on our Find The Best Photographer directory website.

One question we’re sometimes asked is how having a listing can help a photography business.

It is possible that you will get bookings directly from the listing but this is almost impossible to track. Even if you asked your client where they found your details – most are likely to say “on your website” as that is where the link will take them. Some might say google or I found you online. If you don’t actually ask them if they got your details from the Find The Best Photographer directory, you won’t really know. Even then, some people may not realise they went through the directory to find your website.

BUT your listing is doubly important for your business because simply by being listed, your own website will rank higher on google.

This is why:

Search engines crawl the web continually and links are the map they use to do that. Links show search engines how pages are related and they use complex algorithms to decide how valuable those links are. In other words external links are 3rd parties endorsing your website – they’re saying to their visitors ‘hey this is a cool site we think you’ll love, go take a peek’. And when you think about it, that’s a pretty big deal. Who we refer customers to is a reflection on ourselves so we want to make sure we’re sending people to someone who will look after them. So although no-one is actually sure of the black magic, ever changing recipe that search engines use to determine how far up the results they will place you, SEO experts believe that external links are the most important source of ranking power.

In addition to this, if you link back to the referrer, google gives you extra brownie points. It’s clear to see from the keywords scattered through your website and ours, that we are similar businesses with a similar audience and linking back like this just provides further endorsement for your website.

If you would like a listing on our website but don’t want to become a member of the Network, you can pay for just a listing HERE for just $8.99 a month… Read the rest

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Featured Photographers

We love nothing more than celebrating our members.  It’s the main reason we’ve introduced dedicated social media channels to showcase your images and services.  (Not using this feature of your membership? Get more traffic to your website and social media by looking out for the special posts in our members only group HERE)

Our monthly image contest is another way we can shout about how fantastic our members are.  We are always looking for ways we can improve everything we offer and we’ve been thinking about our monthly contest for a while now.

We love the fact our members choose the winners – we think that’s pretty awesome as you guys are at the chalkface, you’re better placed than anyone to decide our deserving winners.  We also love our sponsors, [C41s, Yellow Sprout and LSP] who make first second and third place even more exciting (is that even possible!?) with the fantastic prizes they sponsor the competition with.

But we got to thinking about all of the photographers who enter, and just narrowly miss out.  Or perhaps they have plucked up the courage to enter for the first time, and don’t get placed.  We also want to show appreciation to you guys.

And that’s when we came up with our Featured Photographers.

Every month, we’re going to choose, at random, from the monthly image contest entries, a further 10 images to feature across our social media.  We’ll always link back to your website or social media – giving you more traffic, more exposure and more eyes on your work.  

The featured photographers will be chosen completely at random, being chosen is not a reflection of the quality of the images and there’ll be no reference to the image contest.  It’s just another way to make your network membership work hard for you.

To enter the image contest you need to make sure you have an active listing on Find The Best Photographer and then simply click HERE to submit up to three images. (If you need any help with setting up your listing or entering, voting, please visit the Tutorial section in the Member’s Hub HERE ) You will notice we’ve changed the terms of entry slightly to allow us to use the images across social media if you are chosen as one of our featured photographers.

So if you’ve ever wavered about entering, now you have an incentive!  Good luck!Read the rest

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Safety Awareness Certificate

Since we began supporting photographers working with newborns back in 2014, right up to the present day, we have always strongly believed that safety information for photographers should be free.

The newborn photography industry continues to be an unregulated industry with no governing body. We have always taken the view that no one organisation can regulate the industry in any way – how would that work? How would anyone know that the safety measures that photographers have been taught and shown are actually being implemented during sessions?

True, meaningful regulation of the industry would involve unannounced visits from an inspectorate body and a whole host of red tape – something that would probably be overkill and almost impossible to organise. There is no one calling on photographers to make sure that the safety measures they say they take are actually being carried out in practice.

For these reasons, we have never offered ‘compliance’ or ‘accreditation’ or ‘approval’ to any of our subscribing members. The team here at The Baby & Newborn Photography Network can never publicly say any of their members are guaranteed to be working safely.

However, what we can say, hand on heart, is any safety information we provide will always be free and accessible to all – not just to our paying members.
A few years ago we invested in creating some safety awareness training. The training is delivered by Cass Davies, a leading UK newborn photographer who has trained countless photographers.  You can find out more about Cass HERE

Our introduction to safety training is available for all – completely free and gives you a great insight into working safely with newborns, babies and children in your studio (or home studio). It provides viewers with an overview of all aspects of safety considerations when photographing newborns and babies; from working with loose fibres and the hazards they present, serving drinks, choosing what to wear as well as why certain poses should only ever be shot as composites.

Once you have access to the training videos, you can choose whether you watch them or not. You could choose to watch all the videos and then not implement any of what we’ve shown you – the same as you could do for any training course you watch or attend. You could even skip ahead without watching any of the videos and simply download the certificate we include.

Our certificate states that you have completed online training on ‘An Introduction To Safety Awareness for Photographers’ because we know watching our videos is just the beginning. This introduction to safety will trigger lots of learning points for you that you will want to explore further.

What it doesn’t say is that you work safely – we can’t issue you a certificate confirming that you work safely, because we just don’t know that you do.

We have zero control over what you do with the information contained within the training. We do know though that photographers who do implement safety within their working practices will naturally give a better, safer client experience. And better client experience always leads to more bookings so it makes sense on every level for you to take safety seriously.

So make some time each day for the next week or so watch our free safety awareness training. It might be the most important thing you’ve ever done for your business.

You can read more and sign up to watch the videos HERE

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October 2019 Supplier Feature – Cloudhill Productions

October sees another new offer from our featured Suppliers! This month it’s the turn of Cloudhill Productions.
Cloudhill Productions are a video production company based in the South West but operate across the UK and Worldwide. The company was started by veterans Gary & Russ who were British Army Cameramen for 24 Yrs, they have a wealth of video expertise both in the UK and across the world, producing high-end videos for social media channels and websites. Cloudhill have been running for 4 Years now and they are incredibly passionate about what they do and get great satisfaction in creating something unique for all their clients!
Their website can be found here:

We understand the videos needed for social media and have worked a lot with Newborn Photographers producing similar video products to enhance their websites and social media channels.

This offer will be running from the 21st September to the 27th 2019.

1 Min video for £750 half day filming and half day edit (Standard Cost £900)

2Min Video for £1100 Full day filming and full day editing ( Standard Cost £1300)

Details of how to claim this offer will be on the discount page in the Network.

We have worked with quite a few Newborn Photographers already and pride ourselves on guiding them through the process so they can get a video that really reflects the kind of work they are producing and sharing their customer experience with other potential clients.

“The Cloudhill team are consummate professionals and I am delighted that we chose them to film and produce our company promotional videos. The whole process was seamless and with the guy’s military background everything was thoroughly planned and perfectly implemented. I am not a natural in front of the camera but through Gary’s skilful direction, I felt much more at ease. Russ was also incredibly patient with me when it came to the numerous small changes I wanted to make to the final edit. Overall we are delighted with both the final products and the professional and friendly service we get from Cloudhill Productions. Highly recommended.” Russ Jackson Photography


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September 2019 Supplier Feature – Artpack

August’s supplier feature is Artpack who specialise in packaging for photographers along with gift cards and vouchers. Artpack is run by Julie Emmett. Julie, who is a photographer, started Artpack in 2016 after she realised that she was so much more excited by packaging her clients products than taking their photos. As a member you can find out how to claim your offer

Artpack’s website and be found here:

“I offer customised packaging for photographers as well as gift cards and vouchers.”

What makes your services/products unique?

“My customers can order small quantities and their  photo packaging can be created to look exactly as they would like it.  I work very closely with each customer to make sure they are happy and getting what they envisioned. I want to make the whole process as easy and uncomplicated as possible and a pleasant experience for them so when they get their photography packaging they are excited to use it and enjoy the idea of having the freedom to be a part of the creative process.”

What is the exclusive discount that you’ll be offering to Members?

“Each customer will get a free 5 pack of Thank You Cards with their order and will be entered into a draw for a prize at the end of the week.”

If you sell props what is your biggest seller?

“My biggest sellers are USBs in mini drawstring bags and gift cards.”

“I love photography and enjoyed 10 years of it but when I started to realise that I was more excited to create and design the packaging for my customers photos than actually taking them I knew it was time to pursue this. It had never occurred to me that I could make a career out of it and 3 years later I still love every single moment of it! Following your passion really is where you should be pouring all your energy into and that is exactly what I do for all my customers.”

“Your logo says so much about you and I love to see and work with them, because I don’t get to meet my customers I feel I get a small insight into what they are like from the colours and designs they choose.”

“Excellent quality products, fast service and happy to help with individual requests. Cannot recommend highly enough. Will definitely be using Artpack for my photography packaging every time!” – Faye Collins

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BANPAS Showcase Winner – July 2019

We had an amazing number of entrants in the July showcase, so much talent, but this gorgeous image by Hayley Cattell was a firm favourite with everyone. Hayely’s website can be found here.

There will be no Image Contest in August, but it will be back again in September.

Did you shoot the image for the showcase or as part of a client session?

“I shoot all of my images as part of client sessions – I think that’s what makes it so special to me when I’m ever voted in one of the top three!”

What stood out to you about the image, why did you choose it for your entry?

“I adore neutral colour palettes and pale colours, but I loved this one in particular because of how snug and cute Baby looks all tucked up with the little teddy.”

Tell us about how you lit and set up the image?

“For this shot I used natural light from wide floor length windows. I use blinds over part of the window so there’s not too much light streaming through as I like to have enough shadow to see the depth of baby’s face. I swaddled Baby with a stretch wrap, then used the knitted wrap on top. A second wrap was used to drape from Baby over the edge of the basket.”

Would you like to mention any suppliers whose products or props are used in the image?

“Always! My amazingly talented mum ( knit the wraps, bonnet and gorgeous little teddy.”

What does winning the showcase mean to you?

“So much, you wouldn’t believe the smile on my face right now! I can’t begin to put into words how thankful I am that any of the other talented photographers here would be voting my image.”

What other elements of your BANPAS membership do you enjoy most?

“The fantastic monthly content, but mainly the wonderful and ongoing support and help that’s always readily available.”

How long have you been shooting professionally?

“I’ve been shooting professionally for over 7 years, and working for myself for 5 years now. I actually fell in love with, but mainly stumbled across, photography when I was around 16 years old. It was mainly by accident, I actually fell ill and was unable to start college when I was supposed to. With more spare time on my hands than anyone knows what to do with, I came across the old photo sharing website, Flickr, and just totally fell in love with it from there!”

Where do you work from?

“I work from my home studio in Barnsley, South Yorkshire.”

What are your best selling/most popular products?

“My most popular item to sell are digital images – but what I think makes mine special and my clients really love them is that I also provide a gorgeous little linen album with any USB of all images. I think it’s so important for clients to walk away with a beautifully printed, physical product! Everybody seems to purchase that, but my next best selling product would then probably be one of my 24 x 24″ multiple aperture frames.”

What photography training have you undertaken and why?

“I’ve had 1:1 newborn posing and safety training, as well as in-person and online workshops. I don’t think you ever stop learning, and it’s so important when first starting out to get some proper training on how to safely pose those precious little babies.I also have an A-Level in photography.”

How far in advance do clients have to book and what is your booking process?

“I take bookings from my client’s 20 week scan. I can sometimes squeeze in baby’s who have already arrived depending on how busy I am, but I definitely recommend parents booking while still pregnant to guarantee availability!”

What is your favourite genre of photography?

“Newborns & Babies – 100%!”

How do you win your subjects over, that goes for any age from Newborn to adults?

“With newborns and babies, it’s always a lot of patience and perseverance. With adults, usually humour at my expense!”

We’d love you to share some customer reviews.

“We’ve been to Hayley for newborn shoots for both our daughters and have been so thrilled with the photos we’ve always booked back in for more! Hayley is lovely with babies, she is so patient even when all they seem to want to do is feed and manages to get them so relaxed to capture beautiful images that we will treasure forever. We’ve recently had a newborn shoot that we took our 2 year old along to and despite her usually being shy with strangers Hayley soon had her leaping around roaring like a lion! We recommend Hayley to all our friends. Definitely want to book a family outdoor shoot in future!”

We’d love you to show us your space?

A huge thank you to our wonderful showcase sponsors who support this competition every month!

C41’s Photo Imaging

Yellow Sprout

LSP Actions By Lemon SkyRead the rest

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July 2019 Supplier Feature – Aaduki

This month’s supplier feature is Aaduki Multimedia Insurance which started trading in 2004. Read about how this small but dedicated Devon based business came to be. Aaduki’s website can be found by clicking on the following link:

“Insurance for Photographers and Video Makers:

  • Photography, Video Making and Computer Equipment, Props, Hired in Equipment with options for cover at the premises, in the UK and abroad. These can include ‘All Risks’ and ‘Full Open Theft’ cover which are important covers which are not included on all policies in the market.
  • Public Liability Insurance – for your legal liability to third parties for accidental injury and accidental damage to third party property.
  • Employers’ Liability Insurance – for your legal liability to employees.
  • Professional Indemnity Insurance – for protection against financial loss as a direct result of a claim made against you for alleged breach of your professional duty (for example if your customer is unhappy with the quality of the images and are looking to take legal action against you as a result).”

“We offer top-end photographers and video maker insurance policies and personal service.”

“During this week quotations for photographic/video making equipment insurance for members will also include £2000 insurance coverage for props for FREE, member please see the supplier page in the hub for more details.”

To claim this offer log into the hub by clicking here.

“In July 2001, Darryl Probert left a large national insurance broker to join Anchorman Insurance Consultants Ltd (one of the leading providers of professional indemnity insurance) to create their media insurances division.

Darryl has over 20 years of insurance experience, most of which he has spent dealing exclusively with the photographic, video and wider media industry. Darryl and his team offer a professional, informed, expert and friendly service to all customers, old and new.

In November 2005 Darryl purchased the fast-growing division from Anchorman Insurance and merged it with Versatile. Just 2 years later, Aaduki was already recognised as one of the main providers of insurance to photographers and video makers.

Darryl continues to be at the front line of the business to deal with customers and is keen to build Aaduki Multimedia Insurance into the leading media insurance provider by increasing the range of products offered and the number of suppliers used. He leads an expanding team of staff and has contacts throughout the media and insurance industries.”

“We are a small but dedicated team based in the lovely county of Devon.”

“My photographic insurance has been with Aaduki for a relatively short period of time, but I confess that I am delighted in my decision to move my insurance needs to them.

The proof of any insurance is not when things are all good but when you have a problem. In my case, I was robbed overseas and lost my equipment in the process. Aaduki provided immediate assistance and their communications were supportive and exemplary. When I returned home their processes were simple and they dealt with them quickly and efficiently. I had my equipment replaced within 4 days.

I really can’t fault that and I have been recommending them to fellow photographers as a result.” SS

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