Caitlin McColl of www.ragamuffinpetphotography.com.au shares how to run profitable book projects for portrait and pet photographers.
Caitlin has been running a successful pet photography business for years and in this interview shares one her most lucrative business and charitable strategies – photography book projects. In the interview, Caitlin goes into detail on how to structure your book project, no matter the genre you focus on, for maximum sales, profit and fundraising for your chosen charity. In addition to the money side, you'll hear just how satisfying these shoots are for Caitlin, as the photographer and her dog owner clients.
A little background on Caitlin who was always going to be a photographer. By the age of 16, she had started winning awards and exhibiting her photography internationally. She studied fashion photography in London, then New York on a scholarship.
In 2008 she moved back to Melbourne to complete her degree in Photography.
She says, photographing perfect, beautiful people was fun, but deep down she was looking for more SOUL from her photography.
So, at 20 years old she launched Ragamuffin Pet Photography.
When I interviewed her for episode 24 of the podcast, she told me she was close to giving up before breaking through and business has been remarkable ever since.
Today, she has a successful pet photography business and has recently kicked off the Pet Photographers Club Podcast with fellow pet photographer and another friend of this podcast, Kirstie McConnell.
Here’s some more of what we cover in the interview:
- How Caitlin's photography business has changed in the last four years – since our last interview
- Caitlin's main pet photography marketing strategies today
- Caitlin's new pet photography business podcast with Kirstie Mc Connell
- Why Caitlin choose YouTube as part of her marketing strategy
- How Caitlin utilized her YouTube videos for SEO
- Why she moved her website from WordPress to Squarespace
- How moving to Squarespace affected her website SEO rankings
- Client reviews and testimonials – how, when and where to ask them
- Gift vouchers and how they work in a photography business
- How Caitlin came up with the idea for her book projects
- What is a rescue group and how they can benefit your pet photography business?
- What is Tales of Adoption and how Caitlin came up with the idea?
- How Caitlin attracts pet owners to apply for her photography book project sessions
- The advantages of aligning yourself with a charity institution
- How to effectively sell photography to book project clients after the shoots
- The benefits of having an in-depth booking form
- Advantages of using Blurb for your book project printing and why Caitlin recommends them
- Caitlin's most popular products
- Prices and when clients learn what they are
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.
Obviously, I want to make money and obviously I need to make money because this is my job and everything. But at the same time, I'm not a pushy sales person. – Caitlin McColl
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.
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.
Joining a Mastermind Group (encouraged by Andrew) has been incredibly valuable and fun, I look forward to connecting with my group members every week. Jina Zheng, Premium Member and Melbourne Children photographer.
And that's not all… you get a set of steak knives… I'm kidding!
Seriously though, 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.
What is your big takeaway?
Following this interview, I’d love to know if you're taking anything away from what Caitlin 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.
The profit margin for me between a print package or buying the USB is not huge but the difference is, I know that they're walking away with more in their hands. – Caitlin McColl
If you have any questions that I missed, a specific question you’d like to ask Caitlin or if you just want to say thanks for coming on the show, feel free to add them in the comments area below.
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.
Here's the latest review:
In iTunes by McBread from the USA on September 4, 2018
Just listened to the Elena S Blair episode, and it is just so filled with juicy nuggets of wisdom!
Got to get on that Pinterest game.
Thanks for this Andrew!!!
I owe a lot of my success to PhotoBizX
Via email from Hunter Valley wedding photographer, James White
I want to go on and on about the people in this group, the resources and the material Andrew covers.
Honestly, if this goes up as a review and you read only one line, read this one… Andrew is probably the most influential person I have ever met in regards to my business. I still can't remember how I came by this group and this podcast, but at a tiny cost of $190 a year, I would happily pay 10 times this to keep involved with everything here!
I really am excited for the future. Cannot wait to see who you interview next and what new resources you have coming our way!
Happy 5 Years of photography business to Mark Clarisse
In today's interview, you'll hear an audio clip from Mark Clarisse who shoots candid wedding photography in Melbourne.
Mark is celebrating five years in business. In that time, he has experienced terrific growth and says he owes a lot to PhotoBizX – the interviews and the community involved with the Facebook Group and his mastermind group.
Big CONGRATULATIONS to you Mark, from Linda, PhotoBizX members and me! Here's to continued growth and many happy years of shooting and business ahead!
Links to people, places and things mentioned in this episode:
Tails of Tasmania: Limited Edition Coffee Table Book from Ragamuffin Pet Photography by Caitlin McColl
The Pet Photographers Club on iTunes By Caitlin McColl and Kirstie McConnell
Thanks again for listening and big thanks to Caitlin for coming on and sharing her thoughts on marketing, business strategies, how she runs her pet photography business and of course, the amazing book campaigns and everything that goes into creating a profitable and charitable photography project.
If someone comes in to my room and tells me they have a five-hundred-dollar package or five hundred dollar budget, then I will work to their five hundred dollar budget. I'm not gonna push them to buy anything larger than that. – Caitlin McColl
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