Welcome to episode 68 of the Photography Marketing Masters podcast, and we’ve got a great show for you today, as I talk with Jeffrey Shaw about success in the photography business, and some of the factors that have a big impact on that.
Quick question for you:
How important is “success” to you in your business?
I would imagine it’s right up there at the top of the list – otherwise, why be in business to begin with, right?
But have you ever stopped to think about the factors that have the biggest impact on your eventual success or failure as a professional photographer?
Yes, making (or not making) sales is going to be one of those, as are things like your technical skill, artistic talent, marketing abilities, and business acumen.
But what about some of the more personal and less tangible factors?
These are probably the most important qualities we should all be working on improving or optimizing, yet they often go ignored. In this episode, Jeffrey and I talk about creativity, focus, clarity and authenticity, as well as the need to have a clear “stand-out statement” (what I often refer to as your “essential message”).
About Our Guest: Jeffrey Shaw
With me on today’s show is professional photographer and business coach Jeffrey Shaw from Manhattan, New York.
Jeffrey has been a creative entrepreneur for more than 30 years as the go-to portrait photographer for an exclusive clientele, and he has a deep understanding of the unique challenges faced by people who are building non-traditional businesses in a world based on a traditional business model.
As a business coach and speaker, he supports creative entrepreneurs to use their strengths as creatives, and how to get clear on who they are and how they can best serve and build a successful business doing what they are meant to do.
As a photographer, his portraits have appeared on the Oprah Show, CBS News, in “O” Magazine, People Magazine and New York Family Magazine.
Podcast Episode #68: Summary
Here are some of the great topics Jeffrey and I talked about during our chat in this episode:
- How Jeffrey became a professional photographer and a business coach…
- The important role of your “stand-out statement”…
- The concept of “clarity” for today’s business owner…
- Why so few photographers seem to have true “clarity”…
- The conflict created by transitioning from amateur to professional photographer…
- Authenticity is your greatest branding message…
- Everybody – including you – has a story…
- Why you can’t be successful if you’re 100% creatively focused…
- Why charging what you’re worth helps you better serve the world…
- Developing resilience against the reality of rejection in business…
- The role of “focus” in a creative business…
- Knowing what you stand for in your business…
Closing Thoughts By Maya Angelou
You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have…
There’s a horrible thing that’s happened to just about all professional photographers at one time or another—creative burnout.
No one is immune, and it can strike without warning.
One day, everything’s going great, but you wake up the next day feeling as if your creativity packed its bags and slunk away in the night without so much as leaving you a goodbye note.
What can you do when you feel as if your passion for photography has diminished, or you’re simply out of creative ideas?
It’s not easy, I know, but one way to overcome it is to simply put away your camera for a day or two and go do something completely different.
Sometimes, a simple change in environment or surroundings is enough to recharge your batteries,
Your creative burnout may be the result of doing the same thing too much over and over again. For example, portrait photographers can easily run into this problem.
In that case, try to take on some personal projects unrelated to what you do most of the time.
Tackle new subjects, and push yourself to retrain your eye to see in new ways.
Don’t be afraid to experiment and expand the limits.
Break the rules if you want to.
One thing is certain, there is no limit on pure creativity.
You simply need to find new ways to tap into it and reclaim the simple joy of photography for its own sake 🙂
Here are some additional resources that you might find interesting and useful:
- Get Jeffrey’s new eBook: Eight Essential Elements
- Recommended reading: “Fascinate“ by Sally Hogshead
- Recommended reading: “Start With Why“ by Simon Sinek
- Recommended reading: “E-Myth Revisited“ by Michael E. Gerber