Todays guest, Jason Lanier, appears to go against the norm and instead of specialising, has his fingers in lots of different pies… landscape, wedding, fashion, fine art, workshops, wildlife and more. His “secret” though, is to build a killer photography business with an amazing portfolio from the start.

Jason made a rapid rise with his wedding photography business by bidding on and shooting destination weddings in locations he wanted to be working in and with brides that had to look gorgeous and be planning stunning looking weddings. That's right, he screened his couples and their wedding on looks!

Here’s some more of what we cover:

  • What frustrated Jason as a new wedding photographer
  • The lies jason was told about photography business when starting out
  • Why photography competition is good and you should embrace it
  • Why most photography workshops are just sales pitches and a waste of money
  • How to decide which workshop is best for you
  • What Jason recommends to people looking for workshops
  • Why Jason feels wedding photography can be a great cash cow
  • Which workshops to steer clear of
  • The reason why Jason chose wedding photography to specialise in
  • How Jason booked most of his weddings
  • 3 rules Jason imposes before accepting clients
  • How to build a good photography portfolio for your business
  • Why you need to be willing to loose money for the sake of portfolio building
  • Having an eye for photography is not the only thing that matters in this industry
  • How Jason managed his finances after quitting his job to become a destination wedding photographer with no profit
  • Why Jason feels disgusted at his past
  • The importance of having a steady plan when jumping in to follow your passion
  • How Jason books his destination weddings

Jason Lanier Photography Podcast

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 YouTube changed Jason's photography career
  • Why photography videos are 10x more powerful than photographs
  • 2 reasons why clients hire a wedding photographer
  • The steps you need to take after uploading to YouTube
  • The importance of tagging your videos in YouTube
  • How to title your photography videos uploaded onto YouTube
  • What copy to include inside the description box on YouTube
  • Adding links to your site is critical when uploading videos in YouTube
  • How many videos of a single wedding session should be uploaded in YouTube
  • Equipment recommendations for your video production
  • Why you should not use royalty-free soundtrack for your videos
  • Why you should stop networking with DJs and florists

Jason Lanier Photography Podcast

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.

If you're so fearful of the future, you're never gonna have a good one

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

If you’d like an easy way to show Jason your thanks, and support for the show at the same time, click the link to create a tweet and automatically show you’re listening: https://photobizx.com/tweet

Jason Lanier Photography Podcast

Photography Business Plan and Books

For a business focussed podcast, there is more content devoted to the “fun stuff” like marketing, sales, advertising, clint relationships and conversions than accounting, planning and numbers.

I know I'm the guilty one for the focus and it's probably because of my lack of understanding of the real business side of things and the accounting terminology. I'm making an effort to fix that and am starting with the biggest piece of advice Peter shared in todays show… write it down.

I'm doing that by writing a business plan. My first in 15 years of business. Why now? I think it's more important than ever for me to have a focus on where I want to take my business in the next few years and I know that by having a clear and defined plan I can get there.

Since talking to Peter, I purchased, downloaded and have started to complete the business plan he designed. It's not finessed yet but it's been easier than I thought and thought provoking at the same time. Having the completed “dummy plan” that comes with the blank plan makes filling out the questions easier and I know I'm at least on the right track with my approach.

Peter doesn't discount his business plan because he feels if you pay for the plan, you might fill it out and are actually serious enough about your business to succeed. Because I feel this very topic is fundamental to the core of the show and something that has been lacking, I'm going to add a ‘sweetener' to the plan if you want to purchase it for yourself.

Buy the business plan and use the promo code PHOTOBIZX at the checkout and I'll include 2 months Premium Membership for you, totally FREE.

You can find the business plan on this page: http://www.betterphotography.com/index.php/bpshop-sp-18927/photo-business

Photo Business Handbooks

In addition to the photography business plan, I purchased the photo business handbooks to check their suitability for PhotoBizX listeners and if there was anything glaringly missing that I ought to know for my business.

I found the books to be more of a reinforcement for most of the things I know about running my business so if you have already been in business full time and things are working, I'd say these books may be a little too basic for you.

If however, you are looking to go full time or take on photography as a proper business, I can highly recommend these guides to not only get you on the right track, they will make you aware of a lot of things you won't have considered about being in business as a photographer.

There are guides for different genres of photography and if you are looking at adding a new genre or combining another, these books will again be invaluable in a time saving sense and get you off to a great start.

The first guide in the series is a detailed look at being a professional photographer and from tree, the guides are split onto three genres and focus individually on wedding, portrait and landscape photography as a business.

You can use the same promo code as above, PHOTOBIZX at the checkout and I'll include 2 months Premium Membership for you, totally FREE.

Or, you can purchase the guides and business plan as a package form Peter for $149 and use the promo code for the same 2 months membership free.

Jason Lanier Photography Podcast

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 reasons. Firstly it's confirmation that I'm on the right track with the interviews and that they really are helping listeners to improve their 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 the PhotoBizX show. 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 site like I have below.

A must for any photographer!

By Emme Jade from Emme Jade Photography in Adelaide Australia on March 24, 2015

Huge thank you to Andrew for putting together such insightful, and inspiring podcasts. And the perfect thing to listen while sitting behind a computer editing every day.

Quite possibly the best business decision I have made yet!

Jason Lanier Photography Podcast

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

Jason Lanier Website

Jason Lanier on Facebook

Jason Lanier on Instagram

Jason Lanier on Tumblr

Jason Lanier on YouTube

Wed Plan

Disneyland, Disney Wedding Photography

BUSTED at Abandoned Six Flags New Orleans Jazzland

Equipment

Fujifilm FinePix S3 Pro 6.17MP Digital SLR Camera (Body Only)

Sony NEX-VG30 Handycam Interchangable Lens Camera (Black)

Sony NEX-VG30 Handycam Interchangable Lens Camera (Black)

Sony HDR-AS100VR POV Action Video Camera with Live View Remote (White)

Sony ECMAW4 Wireless Microphone (Black)

Rode NTG2 Condenser Shotgun Microphone

Audio2000 AWM-6032UL UHF Dual Channel Wireless Microphone System with One Handheld & One Lapel (Lavalier) Mic

Zoom H1 Handy Portable Digital Recorder

Canon EOS M3 18-55 mm f/3.5-5.6 STM Lens

Sony Alpha 7 II

Sony Alpha a7S Compact Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera

Sony Alpha a6000 Interchangeable Lens Camera with 16-50mm Power Zoom Lens

Sony 16-35mm Vario-Tessar T FE F4 ZA OSS E-Mount Lens

Sony SAL-135F18Z 135mm f/1.8 Carl Zeiss Sonnar T Telephoto Lens for Sony Alpha Digital SLR Camera

Jason Lanier Photography Podcast

Thank you!

Thank you again for listening to the show and thanks Jason for being an awesome guests!

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