Business & Photography products, software, and systems that make my life easier!
There are few things in life and business that this enneagram 8 loves more than planning and good products/resources that make what I have to do easier.
As the owner and only employee (for now) of Meredith Brooke Photography, the responsibility of social media manager, bookkeeper, editor, writer, client experience, CEO, and everything else falls squarely on my shoulders. I LOVE that feeling, but it’s also a LOT to handle on a day-to-day basis.
It could be VERY easy to let certain tasks fall off my radar if it weren’t for good systems, automation, outsourcing, and planning. Today I’m sharing some of my favorite and most-used resources that will help you create good systems in your business as well!
Here are some products I can’t live without
Honeybook – Honeybook is my CRM. It’s where all of the inquiries from my website’s contact form are housed and where I send invoices, contracts, and proposals. My entire client experience is housed in Honeybook and it’s intuitive and easy to use from my side as well as from the client portal side. All the details from every session and wedding are linked to each unique project for easy access by both me and my clients. If you’re a creative small business owner this software will make your life so much better!
Jess Jordana – Do you ever wish the words on your website could actually sound like you and speak to them? (“Them” = those dream clients everyone’s gabbin’ about) Instead, it seems like you’re FULL of passion and heart around what you do, but as soon as you go to type out some
words to describe it and move people to take action…… all of a sudden: You only speak robot.
Words are HARD. Writing copy for your website from scratch is really hard. Plus, none of us signed up for this “become a writer” thing, on top of become a business owner and a hand model and an accountant and a tech expert, and on and on. You guys, it is TIME. It’s time we ditch those cookie-cutter website words that aren’t even doing their job.
Enter: The Promptlate Shop
This amazing set of resources was put together by my copywriter friend, Jess Jordana. (iced coffee clink!) In case you’re like… “what the h – e – double hockey sticks is a Promptlate?” It’s basically 50% Prompts, 50% Templates, 100% the only DIY website copy resource of its kind.
The Promptlates are your one-stop-shop for a DIY copy experience that’ll have people saying, “Who’s your copywriter?” (Oh, and without the pro-copywriter price tag, either.)
PLUS, these are no writing genius required. It’s almost like you’re being tricked into writing personality-infused,value-focused words that actually move people to action.
Emily Ley Planners – listen, I am the QUEEN of planning. I sit down once a week to plan my entire week out. It’s something I started to keep me on track while I was working on my master’s degree and I just haven’t stopped. It’s how I am able to deliver sessions and weddings and do all of my business tasks so I don’t lose my mind! I’ve used an Emily Ley Planner for the last 5-6 years and love how it’s set up! Check out both the Daily version and her DapperDesk if you like the look of something a little more classic!
PowerSheets – if you’re goal planning without using the PowerSheets and the PowerSheets method you’re missing out! This planner has an entire method for helping you narrow down yearly goals while getting rid of the mental clutter. It also has monthly, weekly, and daily breakdowns to help you actually see your progress! I highly recommend these!
Narrative Select & Narrative Publish – these two products are very closely related to both Photo Mechanic and Blogstomp, two pieces of software that are popular among professional photographers. I’ve used both Photo Mechanic and Blogstomp and had no idea why so many photographers liked them. Neither program was easy to use, neither had very good customer service, and they were a hassle to use. I can’t remember where I found the Narrative products, but they are exponentially better than Photo Mechanic & Blogstomp. Narrative Select (like Photo Mechanic) allows you to import all of the images from your wedding/session, and then the program assesses each image to tell you if the image is in focus and if the subjects’ eyes are open. Each image visually shows you using a bar for eyes and a dot for focus the metrics and you can quickly cull through the session and then drag and drop the images into Lightroom. Narrative Publish is like Blogstomp in that it allows you to create blog posts right from the software that will push out to your blog for you. It’s intuitive, easy to use, and the interface isn’t clunky. I can’t recommend either product enough!
Planoly – this is what I use to schedule and post all of my instagram content. I’ve used other programs, like Preview, and really haven’t been as impressed. The free version of Planoly is all I need for my business right now!
PASS – this is what I use to deliver client galleries. I’m getting ready to switch providers because PASS doesn’t have all the options I need as my business has grown, but for a new photographer PASS is all you need!