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Joshua Holko of www.jholko.com started photography around 12 years of age, but it wasn't for many years afterwards he turned full time professional. His passion has always been nature photography. Today, he would be classified as a wildlife photographer.

In particular a polar photographer.

That's right. He spends most of his year down in Antarctica or up in the Arctic.

He left a corporate job to pursue photography full-time.

He travelled extensively – including to the polar areas he most wanted to photograph – at significant personal cost to help build a portfolio and his network.

Today, he has too many awards to list here and one look at his portfolio, it's no wonder. His work is incredible. And the places he's seen – truly, amazing.

I'm talking about Melbourne based Joshua Holko and in this interview, he shares how he's managed to build a successful, profitable photography business, photographing wildlife. It all comes down to building three profitable arms to his business –  licensing images, print sales and photo expeditions to some of the world's wildest and remotest regions with paying amateur photographers looking to capture the incredible images Josh does.

Here's some more of what we cover in the interview:

  • What Joshua wears in the field shooting on his arctic expeditions
  • Does Joshua shoot solo or with a team?
  • Safety and protection when photographing wildlife
  • The dangers of photographing polar bears
  • How Joshua makes a living today as a wildlife photographer
  • Joshua's tripod approach to building a successful business
  • Dealing with image licensing
  • Why Joshua doesn't contribute to stock libraries
  • How companies find Josh and his images to purchase/license
  • Joshua's opinion on watermarking photos
  • How to price wildlife photos
  • How long Joshua is away on trips to finish projects
  • How Josh handles email inquiries while travelling in remote locations
  • The target market for wildlife photography print sales
  • Average print sales
  • How to make the print sales business more reliable
  • How limited edition prints work
  • How Joshua's workshops and tours work
  • Joshua's typical workshop clients
  • The catalyst that started Josh's workshops and tours
  • Josh's most popular tours and their costs
  • Discussing profitability when running photography expedition tours
  • Risks associated with chartering ships
  • Doing reverse commission work to earn an income
  • Is teaching photography an avenue worth pursuing today?
  • Being a great photographer doesn't guarantee one to be a great teacher
  • Joshua's take on joining workshops
  • Who organizes Joshua's tours?
  • Insurance coverage
  • Taxes
  • Logistics
  • Dealing with airport security and immigration
  • What are the sleeping arrangements like on these expeditions?
  • The percentage of men and women on Joshua's workshops
  • Joshua's go-to camera kit
  • Mirrorless cameras can't deal with cold-weather environment
  • The 3Fs of wildlife photography
  • Joshua's photography style
  • The importance of investing time to capture great wildlife photos
  • Joshua's dream subject

Joshua Holko Podcast Interview

What’s on Offer for Premium Members

If you’re a premium member, you should have received an email with links to your version of this interview – the full length and more revealing version where you hear the absolute best tips and advice from every guest.

If you’re on the fence about becoming a premium member, join with the $1 trial today and get access to the FULL interviews each week, get access to an amazing back catalogue of interviews and ALL future interviews delivered automatically to your phone or tablet.

Plus special member-only interviews.

The key to really strong wildlife imagery and to get intimacy is you got to be at eye level or below with the subject because if you're not, you're a voyeur and you're looking down on the subject and you're disconnected. – Joshua Holko

You'll also receive access to the members-only Secret Facebook Group where you can connect with other Premium Members and interview guests to help, support and motivate you to take ideas you hear in each episode and put them into action. There are also FB live video tutorials, role-play interviews and special live interviews happening in the group. You will not find more friendly, more motivated, caring and sharing photographers online.

Seriously, that's not all.

In addition to everything above, you'll get access to and instructions on forming or joining a MasterMind Group with other premium members. These groups are super motivating, make you accountable and build friendships with other pro photographers with similar motives to you – to build a more successful photography business.

Joshua Holko Podcast Interview

What is your big takeaway?

Following this interview, I’d love to know if you're taking anything away from what Joshua shared. Is there something you heard that excited or motivated you to the point where you thought, yeah, I'm going to do that! If so, let me know by leaving your thoughts in the comments below, let me know what your takeaways were, what you plan to implement in your business as a result of what you heard in today's episode.

When people are passionate about their subject, they are going to make great photographs. – Joshua Holko

If you have any questions that I missed, a specific question you’d like to ask Joshua or if you just want to say thanks for coming on the show, feel free to add them in the comments area below.

Joshua Holko Podcast Interview

iTunes Reviews and Shout-outs

Each week I check for any new iTunes reviews and it's always a buzz to receive these… for a couple of reasons.

Firstly, it's confirmation that I'm on the right track with the interviews and that they really are helping you improve your photography business. That's awesome!

Secondly, iTunes is the biggest search engine when it comes to podcasts and it's your reviews and ratings that help other photographers find PhotoBizX. More listeners mean more interviews and ultimately a better show.

If you have left a review in the past, thank you! If you haven't and you'd like to, head to https://photobizx.com/itunes and you can leave some honest feedback and a rating which will help both me and the show and I'll be sure to thank you on the show and add a link to your website or blog if you let me know the URL of your website and your name.

Alternatively, if you've left a review for PhotoBizX and are looking for more backlinks to help your SEO, leave a review for the new Photography Xperiment Podcast and email me your keywords or keyword phrase and where you'd like me to link to.

Another great way to get a backlink to your site is to send a video testimonial. It doesn't need to be fancy and your phone will be perfect. Click record and tell me how PhotoBizX has made a difference to you and your photography business.

Here are the latest reviews:

Big thanks to Caroline Maryan of Williamsburg and Virginia online photography workshops and training for sharing her thoughts on the PhotoBizX Daily Vlog Challenge.

★★★★★ Photographer with 25 yrs under her belt is blown away with new information

Via Facebook by Delaware and Wyoming wedding photographer, Kelli Wilke based in the USA on June 27th, 2020. 

Hi Andrew, I just want to thank you for your AMAZING podcast. As a photographer with many years under my belt (25 to be exact) and having pretty much specialized in commercial, food, editorial and now weddings and headshots, I’m blown away every time I listen .

I’m currently on vacation with my family and they keep asking me what I’m listening too and fact is, I’ve been doing a marathon of podcasts I either haven’t heard or wanted to listen to again.

I’ve had a successful photography business over the years but now realizing so many other things I can be doing better and not leave so much money on the table.

I’ve been a premium member for a couple of years and I’ve noticed a jump in my sales by implementing several things but this year and committing to really revamping my business using some new ideas through listening to several business coach podcasts as well as photographers talks. There are so many rich nuggets to be pulled from each interview. The hardest part is deciding which to implement first.

I’m super excited about the future and plan to become your new poster child for success. I haven’t been this excited about my business in years.

If anyone is thinking of upgrading to the premium content, Just do it. I’ve pretty much put every other podcast on the back burner to just listen to Andrew’s interviews.

Thanks Andrew!

PhotoBizX Daily Vlog Challenge – starts today – it's not too late!

Why utilise video in your photography business? The number one reason – to make a personal connection with our prospective client, faster than ever before.

You can do this with video on your website, email replies with video plus advertising and retargeting with video. 

There is no faster way to make a connection than you talking to your clients via video. 

If you generally book most of the clients you meet with face to face, imagine building that bond earlier in your process and before other local photographers. It'll mean more bookings for you. Fantastic right? As long as you can be yourself and make the same kind of connection you do in person. And you can! 

Want to learn how to get comfortable being yourself on camera?

This Challenge will get you there. 

The improvement and transformation in members videos has been extraordinary as we add something new to focus on throughout each module – from lighting, framing, eye contact, intro and outros – all with daily prompts.

Everyone involved is getting daily feedback, and it's easy to see the fun we're all having as we progress.

The next Challenge is starting soon! Click the link and add your details to get involved: http://dailyvlogchallenge.com

The way it works

  1. Watch the daily video (with topic/Challenge included) uploaded into a separate post each day – excluding weekends.
  2. Record your video reply and upload into the comments for that unit.
  3. Once your video is uploaded, leave comments or constructive feedback (if requested) on at least 2 videos from other participants. 
  4. Wait for feedback on your recording and implement suggestions into your next Challenge.

That's it, as simple as that. 😃😷👍

Evergreen Facebook Ad Funnels Course (Version 3) – AVAILABLE NOW

Join the totally rebuilt course with new and updated training, principles and strategies. PLUS – follow along, look over my shoulder and build your funnel as I build mine. Ask questions as you learn, inside the private Facebook Group.

What You Get:

  • Recorded training during an actual funnel build
  • Access to the lesson recordings
  •  Private FB Group for course members
  •  2 bonus tactics to build targeted custom audiences – one a little “grey hat” – if used incorrectly
  • FREE access to any future iterations of this course
  • Your specific questions answered

I'll cover FB ads as a strategy, not just a tactic and bringing it all together with your email marketing, branding and retargeting.

Also – I'll share a couple of more advanced strategies on audience building. One is a little ‘Gray' in its approach and not something I'll share on an open forum.

Cost is USD$137 for lifetime access – including access to the member's FB Group for course participants.

Here's what Elle Goss of Always Belle Photography says…

Hey guys, just thought I would update you on how I'm going in case you need some motivation to get started.

Last Monday I posted my copy ad to 7 audiences to test as per the course. On Friday I narrowed down to three audiences.

Results were: $120 spend, 16 enquiries, 4 bookings, $855 in booking fees collected.

5 enquiries I turned away as they were looking for June sessions, and I'm still following up with 7 more enquiries.

The course is easy to follow and pretty safe to say it's working well so far! With my average sale of just under $2k, the return on my investment is looking good!

Thank you Andrew!!!

Access the course here and build out your Ad funnel and be seen as the go-to photographer in your local area with this approach to brand based marketing: https://photobizx.com/funnel

Joshua Holko Podcast Interview

Links to people, places and things mentioned in this episode:

Joshua Holko Website

Joshua Holko Blog

Joshua Holko on Facebook

Joshua Holko on Instagram

Joshua Holko on Twitter

Mongolia Pallas Cat

Ghosts of the Arctic

Episode 242: Tony Knight – How to Create a Photography Business with No Competition

Sean's upcoming masterclass training for selling album upgrades

Evergreen Facebook Ad Funnels for Photographer course registration

Daily Vlog Challenge registration

Joshua Holko Podcast Interview

Thank you!

Thanks again for listening and thanks to Joshua for coming on and sharing his ideas about growing a successful photography business around one of the most competitive genres in modern photography.

In wildlife photography, background is actually as important if not more important than the subject. – Joshua Holko

If you have any suggestions, comments or questions about this episode, please be sure to leave them below in the comment section of this post, and if you liked the episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the bottom of the post!

That’s it for me this week, hope everything is going well for you in life and business!

Thanks and speak soon
Andrew