Is your passion for photography enough to make it as a photographer today? If you ask today's interview guest, South African photographer Ett Venter, his answer would be a resounding yes… and that answer comes from living the question.
Ett Venter is a portrait, wedding and street photographer based in Pretoria, South Africa. He spent four years studying IT, landed a fantastic job and quit to be a full time photographer, because that's what he realised what he wanted to do. He discovered this passion after taking a single photo at a church retreat and knew then, photography was it.
His business has been growing rapidly in the last couple years and he recently opened a large studio space and made it available FREE to other photographers.
His work is beautiful and recognisable, no mean feat in todays world, overloaded with imagery and photographers.
Here’s some of what we cover:
- Why shoot street photography with no financial rewards when building a photography business?
- How to overcame your shyness when approaching strangers for street photography
- The challenges of shooting street photography in South Africa
- Recognising a real passion for photography
- Waiting for your first paying photography client
- Why Ett was fired from his first job as a photography assistant
- How to attract photography clients fast to grow your business
- The importance of regularly publishing your work on Facebook or other social media accounts
- Ett's marketing strategies that are producing bookings
- Why have a website that doesn't have any text when SEO is so important?
- How to utilise the power of word of mouth marketing
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 from where we dive deeper into some of the earlier topics plus some new ones that I pushed hard for that include:
- How clients are able to find Ett's work online
- Why Ett decided to stop accepting too many clients
- What happens when you double your pricing overnight?
- Calculated risks when making drastic changes to your photography business
- Clients' average spend
- Why open up a huge studio with massive overheads?
- Facebook photo sharing strategies to attract clients
- How Ett uses Facebook promoted posts in his business
- The best thing Ett has done for his business
- How to handle an unhappy client
- Why Ett refuses to shoot something that he doesn't enjoy shooting
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 Ett Venter, get access to an amazing back catalogue of interviews and ALL future interviews delivered automatically to your phone or tablet.
What is your big takeaway?
Following this interview, I’d love to know what your biggest takeaway is – what is the one thing that you’d like to implement or learnt from what was shared? Let me know by leaving your thoughts in the comments below.
I shoot less work but I make more or less the same amount of money shooting less – Ett Venter
If you have any questions that I missed, a specific question you’d like to ask Ett or if you just want to say thanks for coming on the show, feel free to add them 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 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 like I have with the reviews below:
Barley Monks Photography
In iTunes by Nick Peel of Barley Monks Photography in Australia on October 6, 2015
This is the absolute best photography podcast no matter where you are at in your photography business.
It has built my business from the ground up, and my premium membership has already paid itself off many times over.
You are not ahead of the game if you aren't listening to this podcast.
Thanks Andrew for giving me a lesson to look forward to every week.
I don't ever want to feel like I'm working. I want to feel like I'm taking photos and enjoying myself, and I won't feel like that if I'm taking photos that I don't enjoy taking – Ett Venter
Very nice and informative
In iTunes by Michaelami from USA on October 6, 2015
It surprises me that with how popular photography is, but there are not more quality podcasts on the subject. I tend to listen to the same couple of podcasts that I've been listening to for years.
It isn't very often that new ones with merit pop up. This is one of the good ones and although I'm late to the party I'm enjoying catching up.
I think what I enjoy most is the fact that the guests are not the same in your face everywhere, workshop touring, book selling, speaker circuit variety that you get everywhere else.
I find it silly when most of the time, all you hear is somebody trying to sell you their secret to success. I would much rather hear an honest discussion and that's what this is. It's a conversation and I'm enjoying listening in.
Wedding Photography Pricing – Spencer Lum
Long time listeners will be familiar with Spencer Lum, he's been interviewed twice before on the podcast and is a master tactician in the area of wedding photography sales and pricing – something I am constantly asked about via email from listeners.
Now Spencer has released a FREE resource on the topic and it's perfectly simple to understand and apply to your business. Spencer has a very cool knack of taking a seemingly complicated subject and breaking it down into easy to understand chunks – I love how he does this!
Click here to get Spencer's ebook, Pricing For Profit. It is free but you will have to give your email address. It's a small trade!
I shoot a specific way and I won't shoot another way – Ett Venter
Is Your Website Mobile Friendly?
It's no secret more clients are finding wedding and portrait photographers via mobile devices. What you may not know is Google is now penalising sites by ranking them lower, no matter the quality of their content if they are not mobile friendly.
By mobile friendly, the term used is “responsive” meaning your website will adapt and look good no matter the screen size being used to view your site – phone, tablet or monitor.
I've mentioned Alex Vita a heap of times on the show since interviewing him and if you're not already on his email list, you really should be. Last week he released an article on what to do if your website is not mobile friendly to still rank well. Here's the link if you haven't seen it: Foreground Web Newsletter
Links to people, places and things mentioned in this episode:
Pricing for Profit – the free ebook from Spencer Lum on simplified wedding photography pricing
Foreground Web Newsletter Article – what to do if your website is not mobile friendly
Thank you again for listening to the show and thanks to Ett for just being himself – It was a real pleasure to have him on the show, I know you’ll love his candid answers as much as I did.
If you learn something the hard way, you understand it better – Ett Venter
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