Annemie Tonken public
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Chatting with my friend Colie James always gets my creative juices flowing, but in today’s interview, I was also seeing dollar signs! Colie calls 2021 “The Year of the Pivot,” and we can all learn from her experiences and flexibility as she shares about how to handle tasks that no longer light you up, as well as leveraging what does light you up in…
 
It may seem early, but now is the time to start thinking about how to show your appreciation to your clients this holiday season. Every year, my goal is to strengthen the bond I have with my clients in a way that won’t break the bank (and may actually help bring in more revenue), and since I imagine those might be YOUR goals, too, I wanted to share…
 
We all make transitions in our business, some larger (like starting our businesses in the first place or switching from weddings to portraits), some smaller (like increasing our pricing or changing our sales structure). What often happens, though, is that we make those transitions haphazardly - with a vague vision of the end goal in mind, but no or…
 
I have a private Facebook group for photographers who want to talk business. Why private, you ask? Because I want people to feel free to ask hard questions - questions they may not want their friends and family (much less their clients) to see that they’re struggling with. The conversations are great, but certain topics tend to come up over and ove…
 
Do you ever wish you could raise your prices but fear that your local market can’t or won’t support what you need to charge? If so, this interview with Elke Van den Ende is a must-listen. Elke is a wedding and portrait photographer is based in Western Europe, where most portrait photographers charge just a few hundred pounds for their services. But…
 
I recently polled a big group of photographers asking them what three words or phrases they would use to describe their feelings about money. The responses were overwhelmingly negative, and filled with words like stress, shame, scarcity, guilt, and insecurity. And maybe it seems that since I teach photographers about how to price and sell their wor…
 
Back in Episode 117, I shared that I had decided the time was right to switch from dSLR to mirrorless, and that I was in the process of researching my camera options. I decided to share that research and decision-making process on the podcast in the hopes that it may provide a less techy, more practical approach to gear decisions in general and mir…
 
What is going through someone’s head when they hire a photographer? Sure, they need to like the photos, and yes, they need to be able to afford the pricetag, but assuming both of those things are true, what makes someone choose one photographer over another? There are ten major drivers that motivate purchasing decisions, and once you know which one…
 
We’ve all seen the thread: a photographer gets an inquiry, sends off a response, then gets an angry response from this would-be client who is shocked and outraged at the prices they’ve just been presented with. These posts often get dozens or even hundreds of responses, and some of them, inevitably, push the original poster to “educate the client.”…
 
Three years ago, fine art portrait photographer and body positivity advocate Amanda Thorson got an idea for a photo book. As of two weeks ago, that idea officially became a reality when she crossed the goal line on her Kickstarter. The photos are made, the book is designed, the funding is there… now all that’s left is to go to print! I chatted with…
 
I have long preached phone calls and videos as important tools in any photographers communication arsenal, but I’ve never been able to perfectly describe the difference between when a text or email is appropriate vs. when you should pick up the phone or hit record on your camera… until I heard an interview with Juliet Funt. Funt is the author of a …
 
When it comes to email marketing, do you ever wonder what your emails should say? How often you should send them? How you can grow a small (or non-existent) list? How you can tell whether what you’re writing is resonating with your audience? Or even just why you should bother with email marketing at all? Then this episode is for you!…
 
This is Part 1 of a two part series. In this episode, I interview Gabriel Biderman from B&H. We talk through the general arguments for mirrorless and the more specific nuances of what I want and need as a family photographer. Whether you’re a mirrorless fan already or just casually considering a switch from DSLR, I hope you’ll find this series educ…
 
A well-done photography client prep guide is a thing of beauty: it is a fantastic, professional way to represent your brand to your new clients, it helps reassure them that you know what you're doing and are going to be a trustworthy guide through the process, and it helps you avoid lots of time spent answering and addressing common questions and c…
 
You may have heard the marketing term "Value Ladder," and while the concept of encouraging new business with small offers that lead to progressively larger ones is pretty simple, translating that into a strategy for your photography business might not be. In this episode, I am talking about value ladders: how to build one in your business and how t…
 
Ben Hartley from The Six Figure Photography Podcast is a marketing whiz, and he attributes much of his success to something he calls Chain Reaction Marketing - a strategy that ensures your marketing efforts have as much impact as possible. As entrepreneurs often wearing ALL the hats in our businesses, this strategy is vital to stretch our marketing…
 
Where do you get your best ideas? I take an hour-long walk with my dog on a leash and a business podcast or audiobook in my headphones 4-5x/week, and I get most of my best ideas that way. It’s not uncommon for me to pause whatever I’m listening to, pull out my phone, and dictate a thought or idea into the notes app, and today’s episode is the direc…
 
Ever worry about what would happen if you were to break an ankle and be unable to work for several months? That was always a nagging worry in the back of my mind, but it wasn't until it actually happened to me in the winter of 2018 that I did anything to protect my business. In the summer of 2020, I launched a portrait membership and secured around…
 
Video on Instagram has quickly become one of the best ways to humanize your brand and market your offers to your ideal clients. That’s why today I’m sharing a value-packed conversation with Instagram Video superstar Natasha Samuel. Natasha is sharing her content pillar strategy and how to use that to ensure that you’re delivering the perfect balanc…
 
When is good customer service most important? When things are at their MOST uncomfortable… think colonoscopy-level discomfort. The good news? Even something as unpleasant as a painful medical procedure can be remembered in a better light if the experience ends well. And if that’s true for a colonoscopy, imagine the possibilities in our photography …
 
You may think of Pic-Time as an online gallery software provider, and it's true: they offer photographers a beautiful way to present their images. But there's so much more to Pic-Time. When you go beneath the surface, you'll find a variety of incredibly powerful marketing and sales tools. It's a unique opportunity for photographers to get the power…
 
Rebecca Rice is known as the Queen of Mini Sessions, and for good reason! Her approach is a great reminder that good things can absolutely come in small packages! In our chat, Rebecca and I discuss marketing mini sessions, timelines for promotion, and the importance of knowing your ideal market. Additionally, Rebecca discusses pricing, location cho…
 
Every other Friday, at 2pm Eastern, I join up with a group of talented people on the social media site, Clubhouse, to discuss topics relating to photography and the business of photography. We pick a different topic and this week’s topic was Our Favorite Business Tools. People in the room are able to ask questions or add to the discussion and we ne…
 
Connecting with the right photography clients can feel overwhelming: what do they want? Where are they hiding? What’s the right price point or message or strategy? One of the most important things you can do as a business owner is put yourself in the shoes of your clients, and today’s conversation with Lachlan Shum - founder of the Focal Marketplac…
 
Automations: friend or foe? If you think automations are only for big businesses or have avoided using them because you believe they limit your ability to deliver a personalized service, today’s episode is for you. I talk about three common misconceptions about using automations in your business, and about how - when used properly - automations can…
 
In this episode of Mini Mentoring, Susannah Storch & I talk about transitioning from a longstanding career in weddings to focus entirely on family photography (after a year-ish off for Covid). How do you shift your messaging and get the word out that you’re still in business but doing something new?By Annemie Tonken
 
We all have to raise our prices occasionally - sometimes a little, sometimes a lot. If that were as simple as adjusting a few numbers, perhaps price adjustments wouldn’t feel quite so daunting. But there’s more to it than just math… like, how do you come up with those new prices? How do you justify them to your clients? To yourself? How can you int…
 
In this episode of Mini Mentoring, Marc DeCarli & I talk about creating targeted messaging on your website that will attract the right customers. We talk about what needs to go first, video strategy, and the nuances of taglines. What’s the best way to quickly capture the attention of your visitors, then educate them in a way that takes them from wa…
 
100 whole episodes!!! Whether it’s a celebration of all the inspiration, education, and action-taking for your business or just a cheers to no more zeros in front of the episode number, 100 episodes deserves a bit of celebration, right?!? ! I wanted to figure out a fun way to commemorate the milestone, but before I did, SURPRISE! I was given the gi…
 
Have you ever been told your prices were too high? When you were - because we ALL have been - did it ever make you want to yell “too high compared to WHAT?!?!” Well, here’s the answer: your prices are being compared to price anchors, and if you don’t pay attention to them, those anchors can sink your business. Today on the podcast, I’m teaching you…
 
Brand photography is big business… and it’s an amazing opportunity for photographers of all kinds to add a revenue stream that can be managed during the regular work week… the trick is setting yourself up for success by understanding how to market, price, and run brand photography correctly from the start. Vicki Knights and Eddie Judd from the Shoo…
 
In this episode of Mini Mentoring, Evelynne Gomes-Greenberg & I talk about the head game that happens between the launch of a new business and that time when business really starts rolling in. How is it possible to stay upbeat, positive, and confident while your inbox remains quiet?By Annemie Tonken
 
There are some big (and perhaps overdue) changes happening at This Can’t Be That Hard - all exciting and all shared on today’s podcast! I’m introducing the newest (and actually, the first!) official members of Team TCBTH, as well as giving you a sneak preview of what I have in the works for you in the next few months. Listen in to hear all of that……
 
Outsourcing doesn’t need to be limited to hiring an accountant or an editor! In this episode, Amy Sanusi and I chat about all the aspects of hiring and working with a studio manager - from where to find one to how to train and pay one. Whether you’re ready to start outsourcing yet or not, this conversation will help you understand the who, what, ho…
 
How we think about, talk about, and act when it comes to money can be the difference between a thriving business and a failure, but there’s a lot of emotional baggage that can cloud our vision, making the choices and challenges we face regarding money seem much more complicated than they need to be. In this episode, I’m offering a way to filter tho…
 
In this episode of Mini Mentoring, my TFN co-founder and (very) long-time friend Kate Thompson and I talk about how to rein in a business that’s gotten TOO multifaceted, and do so in a way that doesn’t destroy all the hard work you’ve done to get there. Kate is a wedding, family, and brand photographer based in Richmond, VA.…
 
Of all the SEO experts I could’ve asked to come on the podcast, Sarah Landa got first pick. Why? Because not only is she an active SEO consultant with a client roster populated by friends of mine who RAVE about her services, she also happens to be a fantastic family portrait photographer herself, so she truly understands the ins and outs of getting…
 
In this episode of Mini Mentoring, Ashley Gliss and I talk about managing the lull that inevitably happens when you leave your full-time job. Even if you’ve planned for that lull financially, how do you plan for it emotionally? Is there a way to take advantage of that extra time without letting the transition panic take over? Ashley is a family pho…
 
On March 1st, the Simple Sales Blueprint is getting its first major update since I launched it over a year ago. From the beginning, I’ve had filmmakers, wedding photographers, and documentary photographers asking if there was a way to apply the principles of Simple Sales to their business models, which is trickier than it sounds. Simple Sales was o…
 
I started my photography business in 2010, and went full time with it in 2011. In 2017, I co-founded The Family Narrative, which was - in a way - a second business, then in 2019, I launched This Can’t Be That Hard, which is now the business on which I spend the most time. As a three-business-running parent, you can bet I stress about the impact my …
 
In this episode of Mini Mentoring, Emily Hines and I talk about the why and how of diversifying your income as a photographer. What’s the best strategy when it comes to diversifying, and when should the different areas of your brand be kept separate or showcased together? Emily is a lifestyle family photographer based in Austin, TX. You can find he…
 
We are photographers in a time when the people in our target market are both inundated with beautiful photographs and incredibly passive about the way they consume those photographs… it’s a tough spot as someone who needs to market their services! Today I’m going to talk about how one small (but consistent) action can help change the way people int…
 
In this episode of Mini Mentoring, Tiernae Salley and I talk about moving past your comfort zone and making the leap from part time to full time. How do you know when it’s the right time? Tiernae is a lifestyle family photographer based in Indianapolis. You can find her online here and here. Show notes: thiscantbethathard.com/podcast/081…
 
Sabrina Gebhardt joins me on today’s podcast to talk about the difference between running your business and letting it run you. With a solid background in business before ever getting into photography, you’d think Sabrina would’ve hit the ground running on her own business… but just like most of the rest of us, it took a lot of floundering before s…
 
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