Mini sessions are a great way to grow your family photography business and make a lot of money in a short amount of time. Most of this success depends on you as the photographer and how you structure this offering for your business. You can do mini sessions for days, but if they aren’t planned with strategy, you’re going to burn out and not be profitable.
What does it mean to be profitable? Before we jump into the tips for profitable mini sessions, I wanted to clarify exactly what it means to be “profitable” and what the ultimate goal is for these sessions. In the simplest form, profit is the amount of money you have after you take what you made and take out all your expenses and taxes. It’s what is left once everything has been paid. It can be easy to see big numbers coming in, but don’t neglect to truly look at the numbers with full transparency. Strip down your numbers by taking out all the expenses and set aside money to pay taxes. A good rule of thumb is to assume 30% of your money after expenses are taken out will go to taxes. You can follow this simple formula:
Gross Income (Amount of money coming in) – Expenses (money you spend running your business) = Net Income
Net Income – 30% for Estimated Taxes = Estimated Profit
Here are a few quick tips to help you plan profitable mini sessions that are successful for you and your business.
1 | Stack your mini sessions back to back.
Mini sessions are designed to be miniature versions of your full priced or standard sessions. In order to maximize your time and profits, you need to stack these sessions back to back. You want to maximize your time and costs for these sessions since you are not charging full price. By doing multiple sessions back to back, you are essentially batching your sessions and saving yourself the time and cost of gas by only needing to be at one location for a set amount of time.
Value your time by keeping the sessions miniature in length. Most mini sessions can range anywhere from 5 minutes to 20 minutes. Keeping them petite in length will help you stack multiple sessions more easily. Place a small buffer in between sessions, but keep it short and sweet!
2 | Price your sessions appropriately.
When it comes to mini sessions, you need to make sure you are charging appropriately for your time and not viewing them as just a discounted session. This means taking into account the time you are spending on the session (before, during and after). Price your sessions so that you are still making the profit you need to keep your business sustainable.
Implementing a hybrid pricing model can be beneficial for these sessions. By this, I mean offering the sessions for a discounted price but only including a limited number of digitals with the session fee. If the client wants to purchase more than what is included, you can offer upgrade options. This is a great way to upsell your sessions and bring in more money!
3 | Sell out your mini sessions.
Once your minis are structured for profit, it’s time to sell them out. You can’t be profitable if you aren’t booking clients. Make sure you are creating a hype for your minis by marketing them and sharing them with your audience well in advance of opening your booking. By creating an “event” of opening your booking, this will instinctively increase interest. You can add another layer to your booking process by implementing some elements of scarcity. Offer the booking link exclusively to your mailing list only. This will incentivize clients to sign up for your mailing list.
Like anything else in business, with a plan, creating profitable mini sessions is about strategy and having a plan. Take the time to calculate your profit margin and then decide how you want to approach your mini sessions for success this year!