Tuesday, March 11, 2008

San Francisco Bay Area February Meeting: How's Biz?

"see everyone, this is a TV. You can use it to while away all those endless summer hours that you would normally spend working, if there weren't all those other photographers out there stealing your clients."

Seriously, this month's PUG was really informative. We discussed the myth and reality of market saturation, how to survive in a busy market and how to build your business so that you aren't as susceptible to what "everyone else" is doing. We had a great variety of experience in our group, from photographers who have been around for 20+ years to people who just opened up shop this year, and everything in between. We discussed how important it is to understand who your prospective clients are to building a strong niche brand, and how being a part of the high end market isn't something you earn after "paying your dues" in the lower facets of the market; it's a strategy that affects everything from your pricing, to your image, to your customer service, to your shooting style. I was very happy to have a number of well spoken, intelligent, veteran photographers at the meeting who were all too happy to share what they've learned in their 10-20 years in business. Their comments really helped put things in perspective.

Stay tuned for the March meeting on Wednesday, March 26th at 630PM, in which we will have guest speaker Linda Russel from Mugshots Photography here to share her exciting new vision in documentary portrait and school photography. Linda will be encouraging the group to develop the portrait side of their business, and showing us how her model can offer every photographer an excellent recession-proof diversification of their income and marketing. Same bat-time, same bat-channel.

-by Lauren Cohn-Frankel, Cohn Frankel Photography. Photo by James Sanders.

Help grow our community! Leave a comment about why you come to the PUGs, something you learned at a meeting, or something you've accomplished thanks to the networking and educational opportunities the PUG meetings provide! Everyone who comments between now and March 25 will be entered in a drawing to win a cool mystery prize!*

*please make sure to leave your email address in your post to be eligible for the prize. Prize winner must attend a meeting of the San Francisco Bay Area PUG between March and May to claim prize


Lauren Cohn-Frankel said...

Ok guys, comment away.

Lisa + James said...

Awesome shot!

patty said...

I loved how the mtg. was held in such a cozy artsy environment as opposed to the Double Tree Inn. :)
Lauren did a great job leading the group mtg.
I feel the advice people shared was valuable and refreshing. I am looking forward to the next mtg.

jessamyn said...

Argh, I can't believe I missed it! That was exactly what I needed. Sigh. That's what I get for staying home to watch Project Runway ; )
I will definitely do my best to make the next one - Linda is a friend of mine, you guys are going to dig what she's been doing.

jennifer said...

i'm looking forward to the next meeting! see you there.

Nathan Smith said...

S.F. PUG is a terrific PUG. An extremely talented group of people, and the atmosphere is always friendly and inviting (now I'm sounding like I work for Pictage :) )

Seriously, it is a great PUG!

AGB said...

SF PUG is a great way to meet colleagues, talk shop and have fun inspiring each other. The meetings are fun, casual and informative...thanks to our wonderful hosts, Lisa and James, and a fantastic PUG leader, Lauren!

Lisa & James said...

Our PUG has connected Lisa + I with a bunch of great local photographers. We constantly evolve our business by talking shop, bouncing ideas and staying connected with our local peeps.

Focus on You Photography said...

I'm always sad when I can't make the PUG meeting. It has been a great way to meet other photographers in the area and find out about the newest and greatest stuff Pictage has to offer. Lisa and James' place is a super-comfy environment. Lauren always has good things to share with us!

Jerry Yoon Photography said...

PUGs are a great way to network, keep in touch with the latest trends in the industry and to learn how to stand out in the marketplace.

If anything, I think the friends I have made at these PUGs are the most important of all.

Why wouldn't you go to a meeting that offers you so much for free?