Its no big surprise to know that 'creative people', specifically photographers don't necessarily have the best business 'heads' on their shoulders. Many try and fail over a period of time, while others succeed on different levels.
I am also sure you have noticed, as I have, portraits and weddings have become less profitable and more competitive and so an additional revenue stream for photographers, photography companies is the only way forward.
Based on these two thoughts, it got me thinking about a solution that would be a win win for all involved, so (insert sarcastic tone here) I thought the school and sports photography industry would be a great place to start . The volume photography industry (schools/sports etc) as I call it has traditionally scared away portrait and wedding photographers due to the vast amounts of data, manual labour and lack of a streamlined workflow, not to mention the stereotypical genre and stigma of school & sports photography that the average 'Jo' has of the industry.
To utilise this 'breed' of photographer, we first need to understand what the best attributes of a portrait and wedding photographer are...?
Knows how to get 'the best' image of a subject
Knows how to use their tools (lighting & camera)
Knows how to communicate with a client and develop relationships
With all the above in mind I set out to develop the most streamlined workflow and business structure that offers a 'turn-key' solution for the school and sports photography industry which would be a win win for the photographer, photography company, schools/clubs and parents.
So how do you make it a win win for all involved - Simple, the photographer creates a new line of business with ownership and growth prospects without all the administration business stress and other duties. The schools & clubs have reduced involvement in the photo day while appeasing parents with a post paid online ordering system - Yes, thats right, parents view the images before they purchase them!
Ok, a lot of you now thinking I am crazy - 'parents view images before purchasing...' 'It will never work' you say... I'm here to tell it does work and is working right now in Europe, Australia, NZ and North America.
The school and sports photography industry has been stagnant for years with a lack of vision and has not changed its ways to accomodate the needs of schools, clubs and the parents of today.
We need to improve the industry with quality, service and sales strategy options to help remove the bad reputation and stigma that is often associated with school and sports photography.