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Post Wedding Marketing

Lesson 65 from: 30 Days of Wedding Photography

Susan Stripling

Post Wedding Marketing

Lesson 65 from: 30 Days of Wedding Photography

Susan Stripling

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Lesson Info

65. Post Wedding Marketing

Next Lesson: Client Care


Class Trailer

Day 1




Evolution of Susan's Style


Branding and Identity


Mistakes Made and Lessons Learned


Day 2


Introduction to Gear & Equipment


Lenses Part 1


Lenses Part 2




Day 3


Seeing the Scene


Seeing the Scene Q&A


Rhythm and Repetition


Leading Lines and Rule of Thirds


Rule of Odds and Double Exposures


Day 4


Intro to Business


Day 5


Financing Your Business


Day 6


Q&A Days 1-4


Day 7


Pricing Calculator


Day 8


Package Pricing


Day 9




Day 10


Vendor Relationships & Referrals


Day 11


Marketing w Social Media


Day 12


Booking the Client


Day 13


The Pricing Conversation


Day 14


Turn A Call Into a Meeting


Day 15


In Person Meeting


Day 16


Wedding Planning


Day 17


Actual Client Pre Wedding Sit Down


Day 18


Engagement Session Details


Day 19


Engagement Session On Location


Day 20


Wedding Details & Tips


Day 21


Detail Photos Reviewed


Day 22


Bridal Preparation


Day 23


Bridal Preparation Photo Review


Day 24


Bridal Prep - What If Scenarios


Day 25


Q&A Days 5-11


Day 26


First Look Demo


Day 27


First Look Examples


Day 28


Portraits of the Bride


Day 29


Portraits of the Bride and Groom


Family Portraits Demo


Family Formal Examples


Wedding Ceremony Demo


Day 30


Wedding Ceremony Examples


Different Traditions and Faiths


Wedding Cocktail Hour and Reception Room Demo


Wedding Cocktail Hour and Reception Room Examples


Wedding Introductions


First Dance


Wedding Toasts


Parent Dances


Wedding Party


Reception Events


Nighttime Portraits


Nighttime Portraits with Found Light


Post Wedding Session Demo


Post Wedding Session Critique


Wedding Day Difficulties


Post Workflow - Backing Up Folder Structure


Post Workflow - Culling Shots


Post Workflow - Outsourcing


Q&A Days 12-23


Post Workflow - Gear


Post Workflow - Lightroom Editing


Managing Your Studio


Post Wedding Marketing


Client Care


Pricing for Add-Ons


The Album Process


Balancing Your Business with Life


Post Wedding Problems


Parent Complaints


Unhappy Customers


Working with an Assistant


Assistant Q&A


Lighting with an Assistant


Q&A Days 24-30


Lesson Info

Post Wedding Marketing

Today, we're going to talk to you about post wedding marketing and client care, and while I have you captive for an entire hour, I'm going to tell you exactly how I get that done so you might be sitting there thinking, but why are you talking to me about marketing? You talk to me about marketing like forever ago? Why are we covering that again? Because for me there are two types of marketing. There is the marketing that you do for your whole business, all your long these air, the over our king things. These are how do I get my name out there on the internet? This is how do I get people to look at my work who have never looked at my work before? How do I get people to find me in the first place? That is my year plan for marketing that involves taking out listings on style me pretty. That involves a listing on june bug weddings that involves the full page ad that I just took out in new york weddings magazine. That is my year plan. Then I have post wedding marketing, that's what I do afte...

r every single wedding to market myself in terms of how it relates to that one wedding. So without further ado, let's, leave right into it and talk about exactly how I handle post wedding marketing so facebook as the internet goes duh I mean yes, of course I used facebook for my wedding marketing but there's a there's a very specific way about doing that I on ly use a facebook business page I do have my own facebook page no you can't friend me yes, I did hit my limit no, I'm not going to unfriend people facebook caps you at how many friends you can have you can have five thousand friends on facebook and I know that everyone's like, oh my god five thousand friends on facebook how do you have five thousand friends on facebook? Well, there was a time little grass hopper when the business pages weren't like they weren't like a thing they weren't a big deal, so when clients and other photographers and other vendors and other people in the industry wanted to kind of talk to each other on facebook, we all just friended each other. But then you reach your max and when a lot of us reach our max, then we went out, we started our business pages and by then they were becoming very popular. So now I don't try really hard to make friends with people in the industry on my personal page, I'm looking for the interaction on my business page instead so that's what I'm talking about, what I'm talking about facebook, I'm talking about putting every single wedding that I shoot on my facebook business page, I also put them on my blogged and let's step back for just a second. Did I say every single wedding I did, I do put every single wedding that I shoot on facebook I do put every single wedding that I shoot on my block now that said, every once in a while I miss one stuff just happens and they get a client that contacts me and they're unhappy. You've got every single wedding that you've ever done on facebook and on your blawg, but you never put me up at all. Sometimes things just fall through the cracks and it is never intentional when it's october and I'm staring down the marathon of october and the end of the year and christmas is coming and we're getting albums in dubai every once in a while miss one I do and that's not intentional. I'm not not blogging you because I don't think you're pretty and I'm not not putting you on facebook because I think your wedding sucked if I didn't get it up there, it's because itjust legit got dropped in the hustle and I tried very hard to stay on top of that, but if the if it's a difference between getting your gallery out to you on time and getting your pictures on facebook, my goal is to get your gallery up on time so every once in a while and I know somebody is on my way, paige right now counting the number of weddings and saying, but you said you did this many last year and there are only this many here guys were all only human. I do my best to get them all up. Sometimes I miss one, it just happens do not take it personally. It has never meant to be personel that said, I tried very, very, very hard to get every wedding I shoot anywhere from fifteen to thirty images up on facebook and up on my block within a couple of weeks of the wedding, I edit those myself. We're talking about workflow that I do outsource my pose processing to sidecar post, but as far as getting the images ready for facebook, as far as getting them ready for the blogger, I do that myself that's something that I do on my own end because that's, my marketing and I don't have people doing my marketing for me, I'm doing it myself so it's important that I choose the images that go out there and then I handle them myself. I also occasionally put my own images on pinterest and they're not too oh, these were the best wedding pictures ever, and then I pin them, I'll have a pin board that's like weddings at the bowery hotel, and I put them there weddings at the roosevelt hotel, and I put them there. The part that I'm sloppiest about is pinteresque. I don't use that near enough, but I would eventually like to continue to make my pinterest galleries more robust. So anybody that surfing around there and is looking for weddings at the bowery hotel will find that I have a hole bored for them and that it will lead them to me. Soas faras post wedding marketing that is my weak link that's the thing that I don't put near enough time into in any way, shape or form. So I put my images on facebook. I make a gallery for every single wedding, you know, a photo album for every single wedding on my business page, title it with the client's name attached to the venue. You know where it says, where were these taken? I pick the venue, I upload the images, and then I tagged my clients if I can. Some clients have their privacy set to weird things. Some clients have tried to fit friend me on facebook and didn't some have managed a friend me in some way, shape or form, and they're on my friends list so that I can tag them some won't let people tag them in images now you have all of these different privacy settings, so a lot of times I will put the images up on facebook, I'll email the clients I'll tell them that they're up there guys have got your images on facebook please please please feel free going and tag yourself so it'll show up on your page and anybody else that you know that was at the wedding and the backgrounds of the pictures that might want to see it go ahead and tag them too. People are so excited because this is the first chance I give them to see their pictures before they even go on my block they go on facebook first so they're so psyched they go in and they start tagging themselves they start tagging their friends, they start tagging anybody that they know that's in there and I'll also say any of the vendors that I've worked with I make sure that I make mention of them and then I could get a tag for them on these things because then it will show up on their pages as well so part of it is sending it to the clients part of it is letting the clients do it themselves and then part of it is me manually making the decision to include some of these other vendors so then I share the gallery, the online gallery, the facebook gallery I'm not talking about sin folio we're not there yet, but I do send it with the clients and then I do put it on other vendors pages as well. So if I've worked a wedding with daughter of design planners at the bowery hotel with robinson florists, I'm going to go to robinson florists facebook page hey guys, it was super awesome toa work with you at blair injures where blair and jeremy's wedding it was absolutely fantastic! I hope we get to do it again here's just a teaser of images from the day link to my facebook page that album specifically great and I will do that and I will repeat that for every single vendor so that's kind of how I start immediately spreading the word all over social media now I do instagram, but I don't put any of my professional photography on instagram. My philosophy about instagram is that it's images that I take with my iphone on lee everyone has their own different way of instagramming so if I am going to be marketing myself through instagram it will be with images that I take actually at the wedding with my actual phone I'm not then taking those blogged images and putting them on instagram and sending those out into the world because that's just not how I use that bit of social media but then after I've gotten everything on facebook, then I hop over and get to my blawg, and this is what my blawg looks like now, people who have followed me for quite a while might be looking at this picture and saying, now hold the phone for just a second. Now all of a sudden you're writing on your vlog so what? That? Because for a really, really, really long time, I used to just post the vendors, links to the vendors page and get straight to the pictures. I never wrote anything, and I still hate it. I don't like writing things on my blog's because how many times can you say so? And so and so and so had the greatest love of all time ever, and it was awesome, and I really liked working with them love howare, you know, flowers, hearts, rainbow owes, you know, media or shooting across the sky. Inevitably you're going to hurt some clients feelings because but I thought our love was greater than any love of all time. I just can't write like that. However, my sight is an sdo nightmare without that, and I have to put this out there, so I start every single, um, every single blogger post with a little bit of ghetto ceo front and palmer wedding, jennifer and brian get that, then you name up there at the very top. This is seo one o one, and the frustrating thing about seo is that it changes all the time. Google is always changing what it takes to find pages everybody's always changing up their ceo. It is something that I know very, very, very little about, but I know just enough to have it make a bit of an impact. I'm always looking for somebody who can help me with it, but it seems like a soon as I find somebody who can help me with it, the game is changing in somebody else's now playing that game, so all I can do is the little best aiken dio and just continue to plug at it, so I start off with front and palmer wedding jennifer and brian, it gets the venue right out there in front gets the client's names, which mean nothingto ceo out there, but it means something to me. I have to reference the clients I no longer put links to the vendors I list them out, but I don't link to them because sending their link out there in the world means absolutely nothing for seo unless they're sending a link back to me, so if they're not helping me out, all I'm doing is referring out to them it's literally just useless wasted time while I'm blogging so I don't do it but I do still list them it looks exactly the same as it used to it just no longer has and abetted link in their names and then I write something and I write something in my own voice nobody writes on my block but me and to be very, very very clear nobody markets my business but me I don't have someone write my tweets for me I don't have someone write my facebook status updates I don't do anything like that because if it's not coming from my voice that's it's just not very genuine I mean let's be really not neil patrick harris I don't like need a team of people marketing for me although I actually I'm pretty sure he does most of his himself a terrible example but if it's not coming from me it's not in my authentic voice and how long does it take to do this like I'm not so busy that I can't write a paragraph for a wedding before I put it up on the block so no I don't work with a copywriter no, I don't have a team I don't have people and I've said many times it's just me in the spare bedroom of my house and it continues to be even when I'm marketing myself all right morty this is becoming a common theme so what I'm trying to do when I talk about it what I have been advised from my ceo people, which really are just my friends on the internet that I should get that front and palmer wedding mentioned in the very first sentence, right? I'm trying to read every reference the title of the post, jennifer and brian's front and palmer wedding warmed my heart for dozens of different reasons it did that's, not a lie. So in my first paragraph, I'm just trying to talk about some things that make the experience unique one a while before the wedding dinner for mentioned in passing that it would be great if it snowed on their wedding day, not a lot of snow she's made it. Maybe a little snow on the ground would be nice, true to her wishes. There was incredible coating of snow on the ground in washington square park for their portrait, and we had the park almost entirely to ourselves, too. When brian and bryan ryan heard jennifer cutting down the hallway of the west in to see him for the first time, he started crying before she even reached him. Three my husband and I were married at front and palmer less than a year ago, and being back to photograph there was deliciously surreal true, true, true, you just heard me read my own words. Does that sound like me but sounds like me, right? It should cause I wrote it so I'm trying to be very careful that anything that I put out there on my blog's text wise sounds like me saying brian and jennifer had like the greatest love of all time like never was a love and it was like awesome that only sounds like me when I'm making fun of things and it's not going to sound genuine, so I'm not going to write that way. Jennifer and brian thank you thank you for braving the cold for your portrait's thank you for trusting me thank you for letting me witness how much you love each other and thank you for having me as a part of your day. It was already magical to be back in my own wedding venue but to be there with you was a true treat true authentic, not flowery honest were out dropped the mic post the pictures and I'm done if I go on and on and on and on and on it doesn't help me at all. I realize I'm breaking my years long habit of not writing on my blawg but I like writing I wrote a book it's maybe not the worst thing that I could have two dio and I can find something nice to say about everybody I'm from the south were real good at that so yes, this is something that I'm doing a little bit different no I'm not just putting the pictures out there in the world and letting them market for me got to throw some words on there but I'm doing it in a way that's authentic to me and I'm not making anything up because again I just don't believe in having in office inauthenticity in your business in any way any questions about that before we move on when you're shooting the wedding are planning when you're in the middle of the day how often are you thinking about your social media like oh I need to instagram this photo or this is a really good story for my blogged is it mostly in hindsight it's mostly in hindsight andi I don't want clients to think that I'm spending the whole day trying to instagram their day but if you like it's whether I'm instagramming for clients or other photographers and for me that's you know I'm kind of in a unique position that I sort of do both so I'll try to post some set up shot at some point in time throughout the day so what? Not only the clients appetite for what's coming later but to show the photographers and I've done something clever what a view y of you in the world of you set this ring shot up that way I wonder what the real shot's going to look like I need to go to her blood later and find out for clients oh my gosh what are you doing there are like they know that my ring shots are cool they know they're gonna want to see what's later that's for them to but then sometimes I'll just try to do something for them ah lot of clients nowadays have hashtags for instagram at their wedding so during the ceremony you know during what's going on I'll just take a step at the back click one image well click one image with my phone and then instagram it later when I'm having dinner I'm never going to step away from the actual events of the wedding to social media because I think that's very disrespectful but you know if I can get an image up on social media get a really nice picture of their cake with their hash tag on it maybe they've got people at the wedding who aren't married yet and maybe that's how they'll find me apparently that's involves a dance I don't know where that came from somebody had a hand david yeah how do you get all the vendor information I asked them for it this isn't their questionnaire that I sent him out before the actual wedding okay, tell me who your florist is tell me who your band is part of it is to let me know if I'm working with people that I know already that's a helpful thing but if I don't know what I'll ask you did a great job on their makeup that's fantastic! Do you have a card what's your name in the wallet? The float, the floral stuff looks amazing. This is incredible! What's your name, card, wallet and then I go home at the end of the night I input that info in shoot q so it goes right into my relationships database and then it's there when I'm ready to block the wedding I just logging the client's information and I look band deejay, florist makeup, hair well, you over that questionnaire and another course, yeah, we talk about the questioner when we talk about pre wedding planning and client care, it lis out every single thing that's on it, so we've alluded to it a couple of times we continue to allude to it over and over again it is there. So if you miss those days, you should watch those days. Yes, ma'am, for facebook, their name the block yes, and they're the same photo. Yes on and the people don't get because they're doing best photo of the wedding? No. Yes, and the people don't get like a what is there so good and that they're not you never have to question no, they don't notice different know there's something it's the same thing on both my facebook and my blawg I'm not using one to try to drive traffic to the other they're both just out there so you don't post do you post on your face back your blogged posts or when you when you blister glogg you know I don't and I understand that well, yes, I do post on facebook when I blawg but that's because I'm using twitter to do that I'll tweet like new block post up here, but I also just try to be very careful how much I just saturate stuff out there I don't want to put something up on facebook and then put it on my blogged and then facebook it and then tweeted all at the same time because then people are like, shut up, we get that you just blogged already so I try to, like, trickle it out there I mean, I understand I'm up here, I'm talking to you for thirty days and I've been promoting that, but self promotion makes me feel disgusting. I have a really hard time with it and I know that photographers they're very sensitive about other photographers who self promote so it's a very fine line between let me show you what I'm doing and I want you to find what I'm doing so you have to find that balance kind of in and of yourself of sorts thank you moving onwards so after I've done all of these things after I put my images on facebook after I've put them on my blog's after I've shared the facebook gallery with clients and venues and vendors and everybody knows the images are up there and the rest are coming soon and this is somewhere between the wedding and the six weeks when the gallery is delivered then I'm going to go over and I'm gonna start working on blog's submissions and we alluded to this briefly when we're talking about marketing and the day that was talking about just the general marketing of your entire business but I'm doing a little bit of marketing post wedding for every single wedding first of all I have to decide if it's an image that I want to send out to a blawg is this something my client I'm going to be happy with are they? I mean listen they signed a contract saying I couldn't do what I want with the images but are they kind of private like dover do I think it would bother them if I submitted them for a blogger? People like that I'll reach out and I'll ask them your wedding was incredible I would really love descended out to style me pretty june bug and some of those blog's out there you guys have any objection to that? If the client says no, I dropped the matter I don't care if it was the best winning that I ever shot ever it's not worth ruining that relationship to get that wedding published it's just not because in the long run, the relationship is way more important than any self promotion that I could possibly be doing. So if I've determined that they're okay with me blogging their wedding, or if I know already that they're going to be fine with it, I'm going to look at the wedding logs out there, and I'm going to try to determine which one it would be the best fit for, because not all of them want the same things. And I know that christie was here from june bug one of the early on days in this thirty days, talking about what they look for in submissions and talking about helping photographers with the blog's submission process. But every single blogger, whether it's style me pretty or june bug or gray, likes weddings or snippet and ink or elizabeth and designs or, you know, broke bride erred brooklyn bride or the un jersey bride or any of the billions of bridal blog's out there? They all have a unique submissions process, and you need to learn what it is, and you need to tailor it to every single one of them. Now, are there programs out there that will help you? Yes, there are. You can use a service called to bright lights that will let you build your submissions and submit them toe one blogger after another. You get rejected. You send it to another here. Rejected. This is literally the story of my life. They say no, I send it here. They say no, I send it here and it will keep track of your submissions for you. But if you're doing them yourself you doing mate the manually yourself, I like to do them manually myself. The reason why is that lets me build a relationship with each of you each of these blog's when I can reach out to them and when I can contact them directly, then they start remembering me. Oh, that's, that nice lady that can, you know, that sends us these block post. Is that right? Says thes nice letters. So I will. I'll go. And I'll make sure that I look at every single blawg because I want to know what their submission process is like. You need to take the time to learn not only what the blogger is looking for, but what their guidelines are for submissions. If they say I want you to submit a gallery of images at eight hundred by six hundred pixels crop them and send them in the right way take that extra step don't just send them the size that you gave the block before because you're too tired to do it we can't you send the submission and send it to the right name dear blogger owner don't do that hi we all know that means that you are going and being generic and you don't know who you're sending it to hi kristie hi ann hi elizabeth take the time to figure out who your submission is going to an address them appropriately and respectfully send it over follow their guidelines and stay on top of them if time has gone by you know if if stanley pretty says it's going to take six weeks to get a response after six weeks dropping email and say hey I haven't heard from you guys I just wanted to you know find out if you were still considering it if you're not at all that's ok I would just love to know so that I can release it to another publication just stay on top of it don't let it go out there and die in the internet ether talked to you about two bright lights and how they kind of help you do that if that's the route that you want to take and then magazines are the same if you want to submit it's exactly the same product or process whether it's a print magazine or it's an online blawg find the guidelines follow the guidelines stay on top of them now if you're completely and totally unsure of how to make this whole thing go down there is a wonderful sight and it is called think splendid think splendid dot com I was goingto list out the entire earl but if you look up think splendid wedding blawg directory it is going to bring up the greatest resource that you will ever see in your entire life what it is going to bring up is a list of popular wedding blog's and what their submission process is so instead of going blawg to block to block to block and writing it all down think splendid has figured this out for you lin has put this together which is completely insane so you can go okay we have one hundred layer cake what type of features do they want talk about the brand what air their exclusivity requirements what are their submission methods and what are their submission guidelines boom all in one place so you don't have to go and make your own database lin is already nature database for you so it's an extraordinary reference so saying you know I don't have the time to figure all of this out no guys she figured this out for you so you're gonna be good any questions about any of that? Any questions about facebook? Blawg submissions to other blog's emissions to magazines? Yes, ma'am, when you were first starting out, did you use this method to get your work out there as well? Okay, back in the olden days, they didn't really have a whole lot of wedding planning. Blog's this was before the style made pretty days, so I went after magazines, and I didn't just go after national magazines, and I don't want people to think that they have to go after national magazines only I went after local magazines as well, because every you know, every place that you lived, we had tallahassee magazine, and they would feature wedding sometimes, and in new york, we have manhattan wedding, so you've got your local stuff. Maybe you don't have something for your city, but maybe you have something for your region or your state. You've got options, and then you have above and beyond that, you have the grace, sermons, you have the town and countries, but you also have to understand that something like martha stewart, they're going to feature a wedding by sending out their own shooter to shoot at nine times out of ten so, again, like, don't get your hopes up crazy, crazy, high, because some of these super high end magazines or on a hunch? I love that word. Send their own shooters out to cover the wedding so that they make sure that they're covered with consistency. And as you as you, uh, gained popularity in the photography your fame has this has submitting, become more of a part of what you invest your time in or less it's exactly the same. Same. Okay, it's it's still hasn't role in your business. Yes, there is never at any point in time in your business that you can stop the ball from rolling because I feel like I'm a hamster in a wheel and if I stop running, they're gonna be fifty two hamsters that's jump on top of me and keep on going on lee, I'm just gonna be switched at the bottom, so I have to keep going, but unfortunately, it's, it is a double edged sword. You market yourself, which means you get busy. So then you get busy and you stop staying on top of submitting every single wedding. Did you think I'm good? I'm busy and then you have a downtime and you're like, oh my god, I didn't market like any single wedding at all for ages and it just all starts to pile on top of itself like that, which is not good and do you build yourself a yearly plan about because you do so many weddings and you can't you cannot block them all. So you build a plan for your years of where your marketing is gonna pop up? I mean, I can block them all. I try to space them out. Yeah, right. Like I definitely try to make sure. And it kind of space. Is it itself out? I try to not long more than, like, once a week or so. So that, like, in october, if I shoot seven or eight weddings or that one horrifically misguided october where I shot twelve weddings and I thought it was going to die. Yeah, no, I know I it was not a good idea in any way, shape or form. I did it. I delivered I was magical to those clients and then I practically died the next month because I was so tired. Yeah, I know you're all staring at me. That was not a bright move. I'm here to share you not my bright moves. I do limit myself the most ill during a weekend is three. I had an opportunity one time to do for and I said, you know, there is no amount of money that we make that ok, like it's just I can't do it, but so if I'm shooting a bunch of weddings, the workflow is is going out there still getting their stuff back within six weeks, but I and then have a blogging q and the great thing about the blogging q. Is that that then leaves me a little bit to fill in the winter months, right? Cool, thanks, johann, and if I'm really not on top of that, if I'm really, really, really super busy, if I forget the facebook or I forget to blawg, I'll get those images back from sidecar, and then I'll immediately say, oh my gosh, hold images to block and I didn't do that. I have to do now, so sometimes I do actually have to facebook or blawg after the wedding, but that is a very rare occurrence. I saw a hand. Did I see a hand? Yes, ma'am, can I ask, what strategy would you take if you had a wedding that you shot that you loved it? Because it was something you haven't seen before? Maybe a little unique, but none of the details that are typical of blog's and magazines were important to the couple like you didn't have invites. They don't have even floral arrangements. Welcome to ninety percent of my weddings. Yeah, yeah, what strategy would you? Because when I've read some of the submission requirements it's always you know, we want to see print materials we want to see, you know, the boot nears and those details that yeah, we're in the wedding and what would you do, there's? Nothing you can do? No, I mean, I hate to say it like I've shot this wedding over here. Actually, every single one of these weddings over here were all denied by blog's all of them now they didn't have stuff and it's, listen, I'm honest with my client's stuff is just stuff stuff does not make up your marriage. I do not give too cares pardon? I had to sift through several internet inappropriate words I don't care if you have invitations. I don't think your wedding is better than the wedding next door if you don't have centerpieces, but there's only so much that I can do from a marketing standpoint with those weddings, I might have made the best images that I've shot all year long, but if I this is why I'm not on blog's all that often because I just don't have that stuff right like my clients don't do it yourself, they either don't do it or they pay someone to do it I don't have that d I y craft market client which makes me not appropriate for ninety nine percent of the blog's out there so unfortunately even if the wedding is awesome and even if the people are great at a client one time get really, really really mad at me style me pretty and I love stoneleigh pretty I think they're really nice people I think they're gonna really nice block I think they are an empire and they deserve every bit of success that they have but I had a client who had a beautiful wonderful every day wedding and her whole goal was to get on stony pretty and I was like, listen, I said, you know, I will work up a submission for you or you guys could do it yourself, but you have to understand that a lot of these blog's selections air really arbitrary maybe they featured to me beach weddings this year maybe they I need something from the south, not the north maybe they just featured somebody with your dress being denied doesn't mean that there's anything wrong with your wedding it's just not fitting their requirements right now for whatever reason and they didn't get picked and the reason why they didn't and I could tell you why they didn't get picked is because there there was nothing god there's no way to say this nice there was nothing unique about it it was a really pretty wedding and she was a really beautiful girl but there was nothing detail wise that really that was editorial and it got denied and she got mad at me because she thought it was my fault my photography's fault that it got tonight what do you d'oh? I'm so sorry you feel that way it is really arbitrary if if you are wondering why I suggest that you contact them and ask I've been doing this for years I know that it's an arbitrary decision making process and it burns me every once in a while I have these incredible weddings and I can't put them anywhere because they don't fit these weird blawg requirements well you can dio you know I know that you made your clients happy and then keep on keeping on any other questions good, good so another thing that I do this is where I get my marketing advice because I am not a genius I do not just make this stuff up all oh gosh I got so excited I just kept on pushing I don't make this stuff up on my own I actually do look at what other people suggests that I do with marketing and I take their advice if its applicability ike take it if it's not I read it any heckle and I see what bits of it are applicable there are photographers that air blogging about fascinating things that I didn't even know these sites that we're looking at psychology for photographers, a camera and a dream the modern talk ground glass joy vertes all of these are people who know photography they know portrait say no boudoir they know weddings and they talk about the things that work for them a camera and a dream had this great article about what do you do in the winter when you don't have any money here? Some suggestions here's my method my meaning there here's my method for how I run a winter sale here's how I run a print sale here is how clients think about buying things here's another way to sell your boudoir work it's just wonderful musings from people who have had success about it in the industry on are talking about it. So do I look outwards for marketing advice? Of course ideo but I also take marketing advice from people who have absolutely nothing to do with wedding photography. Do I watch the creative live business classes? Yes, I do do I watch the creative life marketing classes? Of course I do do I try to network with people who have nothing to do with business in wedding photography at all? Of course ideo because we don't have to stay in our own little subset of the business world to learn other things about marketing so I'm always looking at who else can I talk to that might be able to spark my post wedding marketing in a different way? And I just keep my eyes open to things like that. So if you've never watched anything on the creative line of business channel, you might want to go look at it there's some pretty bright people there and their marketing classes are fantastic, so the info is out there if you're looking for it. So again, these are the same marketing principles that I've been talking about before these were the same marketing principles that I talked about in the marketing class. The only difference is I'm doing all of these things after every single wedding, not just a couple times a year, not just once in the winter, but after every single wedding and urgency matters. It matters that you get the stuff up on facebook quickly and matters that you get a blogger post up quickly. It matters if you want to submit to a blawg for a magazine, it matters that you do it quickly because eventually this admissions become older, they're not as applicability there out of the season that they're looking for. You need to get this stuff out there, so if you're on lee doing this a couple of times a year, you're going to miss out on some of these things. I also pull images after every single wedding in terms of marketing for my portfolio and four competitions that's my last stop in my work flow is to look through all of the images, pull anything that I might want to put into print competition, pull anything that I might want to enter into, fearless in any of their competitions, pull anything that I'm going to put and my portfolio am I going to update any of my blawg galleries, heir of my website galleries with these things when I teach my going to use any of these images when I teach, if I pull them after every single wedding and set them aside, you know, copy them to another folder I've mentioned before, I actually have been folio galleries dedicated to these things that I'm constantly populating. If I do this after every single wedding, then I'm not in a panic to do it at the end of the year, because looking at six hundred to eight hundred images for fifty some odd weddings at the end of the year will literally break you in half, so don't do it as if I'm not already sick enough of my own work. So after every single wedding, I also send images to vendors when the entire zen folio gallery is up, I have a template email that I used. To say hi vendor of course I replace vendor with their name. Hi vendor! It was great to work with you at the x y z wedding. I just wanted to share the images from the wedding with you. Here is where the gallery is here is how you get them here is how you download them if you want to use them in any of your advertising if you want to use them on your website let me know if you need me to size it down in papa logo on it for you. But otherwise if you use it, please give me credit then I let they use them for free for free. I don't ask them to pay me. I don't ask them for anything like that here the images just credit me go to town that is building the relationship with them. This is not me giving away my intellectual property. This is me helping them so that they can help me. And I'm still getting credit for the work when they put the ad in the magazine photo by susan stripling great that's all I'm asking for yes, ma'am. Then you swear if they were not further okay no, I don't want there to be you refer a client to me because I give you x y z I want to be the easiest mentor they've ever worked with ever I want them to work with me because I take good care of their clients. I give their clients good images, I provide images to them and I'm just sweet to work with and I know it's controversial, a lot of photographers get all up in arms oh, my god, you give the images to the vendors and you let them use them for free should totally be charging them they're just using your images for their advertising. I know why is that a bad thing? That's a good thing they've got my name on their ad. Awesome the end. Any questions about that? Yes, ma'am, you don't send the squeegee level. No, they get the high resolution images generally, if they want them for their blawg, they'll come back and we'll be like I want them from my block but they need to be at a specific size and let's say you know what grabbed the ones that you want for your blawg put them in a favorites folder ons and folio email me the favorites folder just like I do. When I get my album select from my clients I take him, I run him through the blawg action I throw a logo on them, I hand them over here you go most of the time what they're using the high resolution images for is for advertising is for portfolio and if they do want something for facebook if they do want something for their blood I tell them listen, if there's something on my block that I blogged already that you want for your blah go get it if you want it for your facebook page okay, use it for your facebook page just fine, but if you want something school, just let me know when I'll size it for you and arthur my logo on it be the easiest vendor that they've ever worked with ever and they will remember that there really will true truth, any image, any questions at all about post wedding marketing before we move on over to client care? Yes, sir, you ever drop off any printed images for like the wedding venues that have their little album and picture this place? You know it's really funny actually oftentimes I will ask a venue I'd love to make you an album would you love to have one? Do you know the response I get ninety nine percent of the time? We just want something we can put online, you know we don't really show images way don't really show albums to people anymore we just want images that we can put on our ipad that we can put on our website and I'll offer, do you know you guys have got this great catering office? Do you guys want to print? No, we're good. We're mostly doing it online nowadays, okay, how about I give you a bunch of images for online, then? All right, every once in a while, if alan, if I'm feeling real punchy, I'll make him a slide show because that's what they really want. Anyhow, they want something that they can show a prospective client before they even walked in the door.

Class Materials

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Quicksheet Inside Guide (one large PDF file)
Quicksheet Inside Guide (zip file of individual PDF pages)
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Ratings and Reviews

Misty Angel

oh Susan, you are AWESOME!! I am not a wedding photographer (despite dipping my toe in this intimidating pool for one of my dearest friends), I shoot all forms of portraits and love sports too! Your '30-Days' has been the single most influential and educational moments since I started my venture into photography in 2009! THANK YOU! Your honesty, directness, bluntness, humor and vulnerability makes these 30-Days the most worthwhile time spent away from actual shooting; while simultaneously is the most inspirational motivator to push you out there to practice these ideas/techniques! #SShostestwiththemostest You raise the bar in this industry, not just with wedding photographers, but with all genres of photography! I wanted this course to learn about shooting and thought, great... I'll get a little bit of the business side too... OMG! I got it ALL! I'm dying! What an awesome investment in myself, my business and in YOU! PLEASE keep doing what you are doing! I love your new Dynamic Range, I feel that it is a wonderful extension of the work you do with Creative Live! I watch you EVERY DAY, every morning... I know that I continue absorbing your wisdom through repetition! I don't want to be you, I want to rise to your level! So thank you for the inspiration, motivation and aspiration! Keep on being REAL, its what we love about you! We embrace your Chanel meets Alexander McQueen-ness! :) Thank you for stepping into this educational space and providing us with your lessons learned so we can avoid the negative-time investment making mistakes... we are drinking your virtual lemonade!! HA! Like the others, whatever wisdom you offer in this medium, I will be jumping at the opportunity to learn from you! THANK YOU!


All the positive reviews say it all. When Susan took on the challenge of teaching this course it must of looked like attempting to climb Mount Everest...and she accomplished just that. Susan is a detailed, well-organized photographer and this clearly comes out in her teaching. Using repetition, clear instructions, a logical and well laid out presentation, she answers most any question you might have when it comes to wedding photography. I felt like I was having a private consultation when watching the course. She is real, honest, tactful, funny, and a gift to the photography community. Finally, her photography is professional and inspiring. Thank you Susan for the tremendous amount of work that you put into making this an outstanding Creative Live course for us all.


Wow. What a super, comprehensive, entertaining, informative course. Well done. I've taking a lot of photography classes and this one is definitely top of the list. Susan Stripling was very well prepared (and great job by the CreativeLive Team too). Terrific course. Susan shared so much. Thank you! P.S. Love the CL boot camp courses.

Student Work