5 Ways To Increase Your Business during the Holidays

As a photographer, the holiday season is a great time to draw in new clients, as well as reconnect with your current clients. Here are just a few examples of how you can increase your business at the holidays, and offer your clients fun and unique services!  

1. Mini-Shoots 

A lot of us tend to be saving our money for gifts around the holidays, so an elaborate or expensive photo shoot may not be in the budget for a lot of families. By offering mini-shoots, you can still provide a handful of really great images to your clients, but charge them much less, and spend less time on editing. That way, you will be able to do even more shoots, and the mini-shoots can add up quickly! Your pricing and what the mini-shoots entail will depend entirely on your regular pricing, but think in simple terms like a) how many photos should be included in your package so that your clients feel like they are getting plenty of images and b) how much time should you set aside for a mini-shoot – 30 minutes? An hour? All of this is up to you, so think of ways that you can give your clients a smaller package, but still make them feel as though they’re getting great photos at a wonderful price.  

2. Print Specials 

We all know that grandparents, great-grandparents, aunts and uncles love nothing more than receiving photos of their families around the holidays, which makes this time of year perfect for print specials! Whether you print your own photos, or have a professional printer who you use regularly, try putting together a couple of packages at different price points that include a variety of print sizes or photo papers. There are plenty of professional printers to choose from, but if you do not already have your go-to printer, http://www.whcc.com/ offers a special to new clients that lets your receive up to five 8X10 prints for free, just for signing up. They also offer everything from large canvas prints, to greeting cards.  

3. Holiday Cards 

Speaking of greeting cards, sending out holiday cards with photos of our families each year is a tradition a lot of us share! Now is the perfect time to either include a box of greeting cards in your print specials, or reconnect with your current clients and offer to have one of their favorite photos from a past shoot included on a holiday card. You could even take this idea a little further, and include products such as bookmarks, postcards, and the ever-popular refrigerator magnet (you can’t deny it, we all love them)! This is also a great opportunity to go the extra mile to offer photo products and packaging that really showcase your brand and style, which will make people who see your prints and products say “Who took this photo?” which will, in the long run, generate great word of mouth for your business.  

4. Giveaways 

If you have a Facebook page for your business (and if you don’t, you really should look into it) try advertising a giveaway for one of you mini-shoots on your business page. This is a great way of getting the word out about your business, because you can ask your clients to “share” your Facebook page with their friends, and for everyone who shares the link, they will have their name entered to win a free mini-shoot. In the meantime, more people will see your business, and even if they do not schedule a shoot with your right away, they may do so in the near future – word of mouth (are you seeing the theme here?) is priceless in the photography world!  

5. Gift Cards 

Offering gift cards gives you the opportunity to cater to a separate group of customers other than the ones who are directly looking for a photo shoot. You can sell gift cards to pretty much anyone for any occasion, so they are a great service to offer for the moms whose daughters want a fun and trendy senior photo shoot, or to the husband who wants to give his wife something glamorous and unique for her birthday! Again, this is another great opportunity for you to get creative with your packaging of the gift cards and really show off your brand. You could design your own, have them designed for you by a printer, or, you could try www.etsy.com  to get some ideas on packaging and branding (be careful, though, Etsy is addictive). If you do not want to go the route of printed gift cards, digital cards that the customers can print out are always a hit, too, and you can be just as creative with those! Just like gift cards for any other service, think of different pricing levels, all the way from mini-shoots up the line to $1500 worth of photos – you never know who may buy that $1500 gift card! 


Anna Gay is a portrait photographer based in Athens, GA and the author of the dPS ebook The Art of Self-Portraiture. She also designs actions and overlays for Photoshop. When she is not shooting or writing, she enjoys spending time with her fiancee, and their two cats, Elphie and Fat Cat.