Why Limiting Mini Sessions is Good for Your Business, Your Clients, and You!
I’ve been in business for almost six years and every year I’ve dreaded mini sessions. At first I was worried that I would only book one person, when I needed three to make it worth it — then, it became more than that.
As a lifestyle photographer with a focus on connection both between my clients and myself, and my clients and each other, I found mini sessions so difficult to execute well. I missed that connection every time and this year I decided to find out why.
After months of waffling on whether I wanted to do them or not, and if I did, how to make them better, I discovered my answer: limit them in any way I could. If my problem was connection, I discovered, I would need to eliminate all the things that were distracting me and my clients at the session. This year, I found my perfect formula for minis.
1. Ditch Iconic Locations – Living in the Bay Area, there are a multitude of ‘it’ locations that people want. I’m sure they exist in your town, too. Here’s the thing with iconic, though, everyone wants that one shot in front of the bridge/building/landscape of everyone smiling and looking, and prioritizing that shot means you take away time that could be spent building real connection. Plus, it’s usually posed and stiff, which no lifestyle photographer wants.
2. Know Your Location – Every year I try to find the best locations I can possibly find and vary them for the variety of desires of my clients. This led to me showing up to places that were busy, and that I wasn’t as familiar with. This year, I have one, very versatile location. I know it like the back of my hand, it’s not iconic, and it’s completely deserted most days. Knowing your location means you know exactly what works and what doesn’t and you can spend your time focusing on bringing out as much joy and authenticity in your short time with your clients.
3. Limit Your Mini Days – I used to have six sets of mini sessions in a season. This year, I’ve paired that down to three and I am thrilled. Ideally, minis would be for your current clients who love your work, have a relationship with you, and just need an update on images for the year. They may have had a newborn session at the beginning of the year, or booked a larger package last year and not need another larger shoot this year. Those clients should be on your e-mail list, just waiting for you to announce mini session dates. Once they are announced, they will pounce. Leave space for only that number of clients. Any extra sessions mean that you will get price shoppers who don’t know your work or you, and while sometimes those work out to be lifelong clients, often times it leads to a lackluster experience for you and for them.
Imposing these limits has been incredibly effective at increasing the connection and genuine joy in my families, and helping me devote more time and energy to my full session clients while still delivering something I’m incredibly proud of to my mini session clients. It has also decreased stress for me at my busiest time of year. As an added bonus, it’s led to people who want that iconic location or more time to spring for the standard session and to realize that they actually have a larger, more exciting vision for their time with me.
napcp contributor meet Cristin More
About the Contributor: I\'m a Bay Area photographer and mother of two, who has been encouraging tickle fights between siblings and couples to make out on camera (you know, in a classy way), since 2012.
NAPCP Announces Photographer of the Year: 2018!We are thrilled to announce our 2018 Photographer of the Year, Tracy Sweeney of Elan Studio. One of Tracy’s winning images was featured on a digital billboard in New York City’s immense, brilliant, and monumental Times Square. In addition to being one of the highest recipients of wins and medallions in both NAPCP’s digital and […]
January 2019 Inspired Magazine: Featuring Tracy Sweeney!Our all-new Inspired is HERE and we’re celebrating! We LOVE this magazine, and we’re so, so excited to share what we’ve been working hard on these past few months! Brand new features, a special Black and White issue, and alllll the do’s for sharing your gifts and giving back to the community you love! You’re […]
We’re Loving This Newborn Session with an Older BabyThough most newborn photographers subscribe to the 7-10 day ideal for posed newborn photography, some of my best and most successful newborn sessions take place when the baby is closer to 2 weeks old. A few days isn’t going to make a huge difference in the sleepiness or flexibility factors, but those extra days can […]
December 2018 Inspired Magazine: Featuring Megan Gonzalez!NAPCP’s December 2018 issue of Inspired magazine features Megan Gonzalez of Upon Waves, a feature article by newborn photographer Jessica Lynch, information about the 2019 Educational Summit and more! Snuggle up with a warm blanket and dive right in! Print your copy of Inspired straight from MagCloud! Share your favorite pieces with friends, family and […]
We are so delighted that you are here. The National Association of Professional Child Photographers is an association whose mission is to promote and support the artistry and integrity of professional child photographers. To accomplish this mission, NAPCP provides the most comprehensive resources for its members, bringing together a community of passionate artists committed to growth in their skills, their artistry, and their businesses.
NAPCP.com (formally pronounced "NAP-C-P") is a place where professional child photographers can come and connect, learn, teach, aspire and grow. It is also a valuable resource for parents who are looking for a professional child photographer in their area, and want to be inspired and educated about our specialized industry.
January 2019 Inspired Magazine: Featuring Tracy Sweeney!
Our all-new Inspired is HERE and we’re celebrating! We LOVE this magazine, and we’re so, so excited to share what we’ve been working hard on these past few months! Brand new features, a special Black and White issue, and alllll the do’s for sharing your gifts and giving back to the community you love! You’re […]
December 2018 Inspired Magazine: Featuring Megan Gonzalez!
NAPCP’s December 2018 issue of Inspired magazine features Megan Gonzalez of Upon Waves, a feature article by newborn photographer Jessica Lynch, information about the 2019 Educational Summit and more! Snuggle up with a warm blanket and dive right in! Print your copy of Inspired straight from MagCloud! Share your favorite pieces with friends, family and […]
November 2018 Inspired Magazine: Featuring Pamela Salai!
NAPCP’s November 2018 issue of Inspired magazine features Pamela Salai of Pamela Salai Photography, holiday NAPCP Gatherings, details on the 2019 Educational Summit, child portrait session tips, 4 Myths About School Photography, and more! Grab a cup of coffee and dive in! Print your copy of Inspired straight from MagCloud! Share your favorite pieces with […]
Registration is NOW OPEN!! NAPCP Educational Summit
Hey, NAPCP! We hope you’re feeling refreshed and energized. We hopped right outta bed this morning because we’ve been looking forward to this day all weekend! Join us and our 6 amazing speakers, in Atlanta, Georgia, for the NAPCP Educational Summit! January 23, 2019 In one day you’ll learn about how being “discovered” is the […]
The National Association of Professional Child Photographers is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com