Kirsten Lewis of kirstenlewisphoto.com is the go to photographer for Day In The Life photography. She is regarded as one of the worlds best documentary family photographers right now. In this interview, Kirsten shares how she attracts the bookings she does and how to attract bookings for your day in the life shoots.
Kirsten is currently based in Colorado but travels worldwide spending up to 72 hours with a single family documenting their daily life. At one stage of her career, she was shooting over 90 families in a 3 month time period every season.
In 2014 she was invited to teach a Documentary Family Photography class on Creative Live, something she says, changed her life.
Here’s some of what we cover in this interview:
- Where Kirsten’s photography income comes from today – shooting or educating
- Why Kirsten started teaching in addition to her photography business
- How Kirsten achieved the success she has through family photography
- What kind of photography was Kirsten shooting before day in the life sessions?
- How clients found Kirsten’s work in the early days of her career
- Why relying heavily on SEO won’t work for every photographer all the time
- Does your target client know how to search for your specific niche?
- Why Kirsten doesn’t want her clients wearing matching outfits in her shoots
- What Kirsten did to set herself up for success in photography
- Why you need to instruct your clients on what to wear during your photo shoots
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 episode where you can hear lots more content and we dive deeper into some of the earlier topics plus some new ones that I pushed for and include:
- When and how the Day in the Life Sessions were born
- How traditional portrait photographers can transition to shooting day-in-the-life sessions
- Why you must shoot for free when building a strong portfolio
- Why you should never attempt to make money during free photoshoots
- Why you should never advertise you're shooting for free – even for your portfolio
- The best time to sell photos during free photography sessions
- Networking with different groups to bring in clients
- What type of deal to strike with different networks to generate referrals
- How to set your pricing to make it worthwhile shooting day in the life sessions
- What to give your clients following a free session to benefit you and them
- Are web-ready watermarked images a good business idea for marketing your work?
- Day in the life session rates and what’s included in the package today
- How to attract enquiries for day in the life sessions
- How to optimise your search engine results to work in your favour
- The more specific you are with your keywords, the less people are going to find you
- Utilising Facebook and Instagram for maximum DITL session enquiries
- Why you need to be sharing photos from your Facebook business page to your personal account
- Why you need to advertise to the next bigger city closest to you
- Utilising Facebook ads when running a photography sale
If you’re on the fence about becoming a premium member, join with the $1 trial today and get access to the FULL interview with Kirsten, get access to an amazing back catalogue of interviews and ALL future interviews delivered automatically to your phone or tablet.
When you’re learning, you shouldn’t just give up the work you’re doing right now. It needs to be a slow transition – Kirsten Lewis
Plus, access to a members only Secret Facebook group where you'll connect with other members and interview guests to help, support and motivate you to take what you hear in each episode and put it into action. You will not find more friendly, more motivated and caring photographers online.
What is your big takeaway?
Following this interview, I’d love to know if you're up for the challenge and willing to invest a little time and effort into yourself, your writing and your business. If so, let me know by leaving your thoughts in the comments below and feel free to share links to your blog posts – I'd love to check them out.
I decided that I was going to try and do the opposite of what everyone else was doing – Kirsten Lewis
If you have any questions that I missed, a specific question you’d like to ask Kirsten about the challenge or if you just want to say thanks for coming on the show, feel free to add them below.
The Book on booking weddings, I wish I wrote
Mark from Shotkit.com and Gold Hat Photography, who you may have heard interviewed in episode 124 of the podcast, has released a new downloadable book called More Brides. It really is the book I wish I'd written and is chock full of good advice and tips – 191 pages to be exact.
Topics / chapters include:
- Keyword Research
- On Page SEO
- Link Building
- Hub Pages
- Lead Magnets
- Social Media
- Printed Media
- Personal Appearance
- Existing Clients
- The Same Day Slideshow
- The Next Day Sneak Peek
- The Ghost Associate
- The Ten Day Turnaround
- Engagement Sessions
At $48 the book is an absolute steal! I have a copy and the layout is easy to follow, full of diagrams, step by step instructions and more detail than you'd ever expect from such a wide range of topics. It's obvious how much work has gone into this and it truly is a credit to Mark.
You can find more information here: More Brides – Modern Techniques for the Smarter Wedding Photographer.
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 means 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.
PLUS: if you let me know the key word or keyword phrase you'd like me to use to link to your page, post or site, let me know via email after leaving a review and I'll do what I can to make that work.
For example, If I were linking to my wedding photography page on my photography website ” Impact Images” and want to target the keyword phrase “Central Coast family portrait photographer” and left an iTunes review, I'd add something like this:
Thanks for the iTunes review by Central Coast family portrait photographer, Andrew Hellmich on July 27, 2016
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 key words or keyword phrase and where you'd like me to link to.
Here is the most recent review for the PhotoBizX Podcast:
Real authentic conversations & actionable take-aways
In iTunes by Raleigh, NC wedding photographer, Dajuan of In His Image Photography from the USA on July 29, 2016
I came across PhotoBizX just a few weeks ago, and I already find it to be one of the best resources available for the wedding and portrait photographer entrepreneur.
Andrew's conversations with his amazing guest consistently deliver valuable insights and actionable nuggets to help you work on your business and grow.
I'm now a proud premium member: that's just how great I find this podcast to be!
Here are the most recent reviews for the Photography Xperiment Podcast:
Yay! another great podcast from Andrew
In iTunes by Charlottesville, Virgina wedding photographer, Amanda Maglione on July 5, 2016
This is just what I needed!
I am already obsessed with Andrew’s Photo Biz Xposed podcast, but this takes a different angle – it’s not about business, but more about getting into different photographers’ heads about their work. It’s so inspiring!
Andrew is the best interviewer out there – he always asks exactly the question which I am wishing to ask the interviewee in my own head!
Thank you for the new podcast Andrew!!
Find out what makes great photographers great
In iTunes by Ottawa Headshot photographer, Todd Langille on July 3, 2016
I have been a subscriber of the PhotobizXposed podcast for more than a year. To me it is a university degree in the BUSINESS of photography.
This second podcast by Andrew Hellmich is just as amazing and focuses on the creative process of photographers from around the world. Andrew works tirelessly and digs deep to get answers to the questions you’ve been wanting to ask.
If you’re serious about your photography this is a must-listen-to photography podcast.
Definitely a Keeper
In iTunes by Amanda Perris who specialises in Pet Photography Perth on June 29, 2016
I have been listening to Andrew’s other podcast PhotoBizX for over a year and love his open and honest conversational style as well as the ability to really dig down into business issues.
Now with this new podcast venture Andrew has brought the same insightful and ever curious approach to the theory and passion behind great photographers. Andrew follows the threads of the conversations deeply without being scripted or contrived.
This podcast is shaping up to be a fantastically satisfying journey exploring the creation of photographic art and the thought processes of the artists themselves.
Have a listen, you'll be hooked!
In iTunes by San Antonio Wedding Photographer, Anthony Gauna on June 27, 2016
Andrew is Hellmich is at it again!
I've been listening to his PhotoBizX podcast for almost 2 years now. That podcast has been very helpful for the business aspects of running my photography business. However, the one thing that I really enjoy when it comes to photography, is the “why” behind a photographer. I love to learn about their thoughts and philosophy. For me, that's the most interesting aspect of photography.
When I started a photography business, it was supposed to be fun. Then, I had to learn the business of it, which is essential, but not always fun.
This podcast makes me not only remember why I became a photographer, but also reminds me that everyone out there is just like me. We all go through struggles or feel like our work isn't great.
This podcast is one I highly recommend. It's truly inspirational.
Thanks for all that you do Andrew! You're an incredible interviewer. Cheers!
In iTunes by Atlanta wedding photographer, Gary Lun on June 29, 2016
Andrew has already master the art of interviewing in his PhotoBizX podcast and now he is stepping up the game even further!
The information that you get from world class photographers are invaluable and it just feel just like you are talking to them face to face. If you are serious in photography, this is the podcast to listen to bit also don’t forget to sign up his other podcast as well!
Super Easy Listen
In iTunes by Vernon, British Columbia Boudoir Photographer, Jenna Myers on June 27, 2016
This is a great podcast to listen to for inspiration and insight into photographers individual ways of doing things. It's a good podcast to listen to when you feel like something photography related, but don't want to be lectured about how you need to be working on your business.
Andrew is a natural interviewer and I get something out of every episode!
You're crazy if you don't subscribe!
In iTunes by Bangor, Maine, portrait and event photographer, Ed Troscianiec on June 27, 2016
Andrew is a master at the art of interviewing.
His guests are top notch and the dialogs that ensue are riveting. He uncovers the subtleties of what is needed beyond just the mechanics of “doing photography”. The passion, the graceful techniques, the why and how to strengthen your resolve in your business, it's all there.
The conversations flow effortlessly. They are so casual and enlightening, that you'll be hard pressed to find them elsewhere. You don't feel like you're listening to a rigid interview but a friendly conversation.
Don't waste your time looking anywhere else, you've just found the holy grail of photography podcasts.
In iTunes by Dan McCreary from USA on June 26, 2016
Andrew does it right again!
This guy knows how to get someone talking, this time about the meat and potatoes of their creativity, with a good dose of humour thrown in for good measure.
Insightful and Engaging Content
In iTunes by West Vancouver wedding photographer, Clint Bargen on June 26, 2016
Andrew always manages to find the very best guests for his shows. This new addition is no exception and I love the direction that he takes as he dives into really learning what makes the artist tick.
It's a wonderful time to spend and hour and I recommend this alongside his other podcast, PhotoBizX.
In iTunes by Balmoral Beach Mosman family portrait photographer Anna Hamilton on June 25, 2016
If you like to listen to how other photographers think and their creative process, this is the podcast for you.
Andrew is an excellent interviewer, with an ability to ask the kind of questions that open up discussion and really get inside the interviewees heads.
He also chooses the very best photographers to interview.
This and Andrews PhotoBizX podcasts are among the best photography podcasts available.
Andrew is amazing!!!
In iTunes by Dayton, Ohio, old Hollywood, retro, vintage, glamour photography studio and Pin up photographer Todd Muskopf on June 25, 2016
Andrew Hellmich does an amazing job with his interviews asking probing, insightful questions while keeping the mood light and friendly.
His voice and accent are a pleasure to listen to (unlike some other podcasts!).
Do yourself a favour and give it a try!
Andrew is amazing once again!
In iTunes by London Ontario portrait photographer, Anita Watkins Photography on June 24, 2016
I have been a loyal listener to Andrew's podcast PhotoBizXposed for years. His new podcast uses all of his skills as an interviewer to look into the hearts and minds of photographers.
Insightful, humble, clever and always informative, Andrew once again has created a podcast well worth the time to listen to.
Congratulations Andrew! It is a ripper once again.
In iTunes by Liz from Australia on June 25, 2016
This podcast is a series of informal interviews with established photographers.
The host, Andrew, has a knack for asking all the questions I would ask, and he gives his guests the space to talk at length.
Each episode is enjoyable and insightful. Recommended.
In iTunes by Joe Flaherty of the USA on June 21, 2016
Andrew does the best interviews it's like overhearing two good friends talking then they notice and allow to join in.
Keep them coming these are really helping me to improve my photography.
In iTunes by Baltimore, Maryland / Washington Photographer and educator William Gray on May 27, 2016
Andrew is one of the best photography interviewers out there. He gets creative intent, work styles, customer interaction, sales, and most importantly, he sheds light on the life craft of photography.
Perfect for people who both people wanting a full-time photo biz, and people who want a secondary $ flow. Things college doesn’t teach.
I work as a photographer and I teach photography, I recommend his PhotoBizX Premium Content show, and now I will do the same with his new show.
I cannot express my thanks enough for all the hard work Andrew puts into his own photography biz because that’s what drives his questions. He has a work ethic beyond most I know in media.
Thank You Andrew!!
Real conversations with great photographers
In iTunes by Southern Highlands Wedding Photographer, Andrew Szopory from Australia on August 2, 2016
Raw uncut interviews with great insights with industry leading photographers.
Superb listen, thanks Andrew.
In iTunes by Wollongong Portrait Photographer, Paul Pennell on July 30, 2016
Xperiment podcasts are RAW and deliver just enough for you to want to listen to more.
In iTunes by Netherlands sports and action photographer, Andy Astfalck on July 29, 2016
There is something for everybody, you don't have to be a wedding or portrait photographer to learn from Andrew and his guests.
The NEW Photography Xperiment Podcast is live and available
Following the success and support shown by listeners after the experimental format of the recent interviews, the new Photo Xperiment Podcast has been launched and is available on this site and in iTunes now.
Interviews are underway and I'll be looking for new guests, not restricted to wedding and portrait photographers. If you have someone you think would be a good fit, let me know in the comment area below or email me, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pricing is personal and individual. You need to find the right pricing for you – Kirsten Lewis
The idea behind these interviews is to get into the headspace of the photographer and find what makes them tick, what drives them, their thought process, philosophy on shooting and how they achieve what they do with their photography. So yeah, a little technique type content too.
These interviews will not focus on the business of photography – that'll be preserved solely for the weekly and unchanging format of the PhotoBizX podcast.
To hear these interviews in your podcast app, you will need to subscribe to the podcast – these interviews will not be delivered automatically if you're subscribed to PhotoBizX. Open your favourite podcast app and search “Photography Xperiment Podcast” or enter the feed URL, https://photobizx.com/feed/xperiment/ into the search field of your podcast app.
Last weeks episode featured Kevin Wyllie whose 9 year old daughter Regina is not only shooting along side her father and assisting at weddings… She's being requested by brides to be at their wedding. Sound like a gimmick? Regina has been shooting for years and shoots in full manual mode! Your can hear the episode here: Kevin Wyllie Interview.
Links to people, places and things mentioned in this episode:
More Brides – Modern Techniques for the Smarter Wedding Photographer
Thanks again for listening to the show and thanks to Kirsten for coming on and being totally open about what she's doing in her business to achieve the success she is.
I always say that I had to set myself up for success – Kirsten Lewis
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