In 2012, I was destined to make my business better for 2013….and beyond. I vowed to myself that I would do all that I could to make my business work for me, and not the other way around. And since moving to a new area without being able to market myself in an appropriate amount of time, I needed all the help that I could get.
If you don’t follow Rachel Brenke, this woman is amazing! She’s a photographer, lawyer, business consultant, AUTHOR, etc. You name it, she’s probably done it. I follow her on Facebook and her website/blog and she has helped me more than she could possibly imagine with my business. A while back, she was giving away an iPad, because she was always talking about how it can drastically change the way you do business. I honestly didn’t see it. My mind couldn’t fathom how one piece of technology could change your photography business so much. Until she had given one away and I read this blog post. In a nutshell, it was the perspective from another photographer that had won the iPad before and was explaining who much she loved it for her business. And then I read another blog post from Katie Brock Photography, and then it just threw me over the edge. I couldn’t believe how much it had changed their lives/business. So I told my husband once we were able, I was going to invest in an iPad for my business. And I done….just that.
I purchased the iPad Mini, why? Price had a lot to do with it. The iPad Mini (32GB) was close to $450. Yes, that’s a lot, but for what it does for me, I was definitely willing to pay it. Anyway, the iPad with retina display was more than the iPad Mini and you only get 16GB of storage. I was sold. I bought mine at Best Buy (not that this matters, lol), but when I purchased mine with the case (that is shown in the photo collage above) they offered me a Geek Squad protection plan. They initially offered me the two-year plan which was only $175 (and for what the plan covers, it’s worth it, but I wasn’t wanting to get the two year plan just yet). So, instead, I took the one-year plan for $99 and that was it. I was done. I was MORE than ready to take this iPad home and have so much fun with it.
So, how has it helped my business? Here are some apps to show you how:
Dropbox: This is such an amazing app that I use on a daily basis. It lets me store and share photos, documents, and other files on mobile devices from my computer and vice versa. I use Dropbox to transfer any images that I want to use as slideshows for client meetings, to my iPad. I mostly use it to transfer all of my contracts and documents that I need for clients to sign on the go, at our sessions, and then email them to them once I have available internet access. It’s amazing and so convenient. I absolutely love it. Which brings me to the next app…
Adobe Reader: I went through, I can’t tell you how many, apps before I found one that I liked for Client Signatures on contracts. I had tried at least ten, before I even thought to use Adobe Reader and VIOLA! It works great. I transfer my client’s contracts over to Dropbox and then open them up in Adobe Reader for the client to sign. The best part? Is that after the client signs the contract and all information is filled out, I can email a copy of the contract to my client so they will have a copy. COMPLETELY eliminating the process of paper contracts. NO MORE PAPERWORK! I am in heaven. SO much easier and I can also email a copy of the contract before we sign so the client can go over it beforehand. Saving both of us some time during our meeting 🙂
Square: This one is probably one of my favorite apps for business. It’s simply for taking payments, easy peasy. Square also gives you a FREE card reader for people who can’t pay in cash or check. All they have to do is swipe their card through the reader and it takes the amount charged from their account. It also sends the client an invoice from where they paid for their session as well as taxes and additional items. It’s also very safe. Square does not hold any card information, so it’s safe for your clients as well as yourself. AND, if you don’t have the card reader on you, they can simply put in their card information and pay that way. I absolutely love it! It also keeps record of your collection pricing as well as digital files and more. It’s so awesome. I definitely recommend this app!
Biz Expense Tracker: This is one I kind of fell into. I wanted to find something that I would be able to track my mileage and expenses and it works so perfectly. For your expenses, while you are adding the expense information in, you can also include a photo of the receipt, which is SO awesome. Every little detail of this app is worth it. I can’t go much more into detail because I will be talking all day long, lol.
Facebook Pages: I can’t live without this app. I do a lot of marketing on Facebook (as most of us do anymore, lol) and this FB Pages Manager helps me take care of notifications and any messages that I may have. It’s completely separate from my personal FB account and works great.
Those are just a few apps that I use and love for my business. I do not regret such a huge purchase/INVESTMENT for my business because it has drastically changed the way that I work and present myself to my clients. If you are on the fence about getting one, PLEASE save yourself the time and heartache and get one already!
Have a great week everyone 🙂