Building Your Portfolio Contest: Win a Marketing Pack & Posing Guides

THE BUILDING YOUR PORTFOLIO CONTEST

Prizes:

Winners will be picked and announced on Sunday, May 23rd. Winners must contact me by May 25th to claim prizes.

1. SP Design

Remember Angie Monson’s marketing pack I mentioned buying when I first got started? Yep, one lucky commenter gets one for free!

2. Design Aglow

Lena has graciously offered one of their incredible posing guides to one lucky commenter!


How to enter:

Add your entry in the comment section of this MCP Blog post (not on Facebook) by answering the question: What is your biggest struggle marketing your business?  Or if not in business, what your biggest obstacle to getting started?


Want more chances to win? Get bonus contest entries:

How to get extra entries in the MCP Actions Photoshop Contest

MCP Actions

Write for MCP! This post was written by a MCP Guest Blogger. If you would like to write a photo editing tutorial, blueprint using MCP Products, or photography tips on the MCP Actions Blog, check out our Guest Writers Wanted page for details.

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Comments

  1. 1

    Terry says

    Not yet started . . . not certain the talent is fully developed . . . this series has really benefited me! Thanks!

  2. 4

    says

    Just starting my business. The biggest obstacle is balancing the time I need to take to organize and set up the business with marketing, booking, taking and editing photo sessions. Too easy to get wrapped up on one side and neglect the other.

  3. 5

    jeanine says

    My biggest problem is that my creativity does not lie in this area. I am lost when it comes to making wise marketing choices; logos, colors, getting the word out about my services, etc. Thanks for the chance to win.

  4. 8

    says

    I’ve been in business for almost 8 years. I have the hardest time getting senior pictures. I have done *snail mail, *ads in paper (high school and local paper), *Face Book, *Senior Rep…

  5. 10

    says

    My Biggest struggle to get started is just getting my creative juices going enough to gather clients and make up packages, specials and prices for my photography.

  6. 11

    Heather says

    My biggest marketing obstacle is knowing where to put the money that targets the right customers.

  7. 13

    says

    This couldn’t have come at a better time!! Materials! That’s what is keeping me from getting started! The cost to get there. I’m not creative AT ALL when it comes to marketing stuff, and its all so expensive to purchase! I could really use this to get the “kick start” I need! I want to have a somewhat professional look from the start, even while PBing. But I don’t have the funds to do it. So, bring it on! Pick ME!! :) Ha!

  8. 14

    says

    My biggest struggle in getting started is the other full time job I have, the one that is currently paying the bills! I’m still working on this dream though!

  9. 16

    says

    Organization seems to be my biggest struggle. I feel like I am constantly behind and when I get to a point to set aside time for marketing my business, I don’t feel I have the right tools. Whether it be in the design aspect or just wording. It’s hard for me to focus and just take that next step.

  10. 18

    says

    My biggest obstacle is getting the pieces together to market with! I have business cards I hand out and get a lot of referrals, but everything else I have is 1) not that great 2) sitting here because I dont know who to send it to!

  11. 20

    says

    Just thinking about starting….always worried my talent isn’t up to par or that i will fail…your blog is such a wonderful reference!

  12. 22

    says

    I am just getting started with the ‘official’ launch of my business. I am struggling with how to get my name out there and how to market to the right people. Also struggling with pricing packages an products. This is all so much more difficult than I anticipated. I could really use the help! Thanks! :)

  13. 23

    Amy says

    My biggest issue is designing. I wouldn’t know where to begin to design a logo, marketing pieces, ets. All my contracts and everything are just typed up in MS Word. Boring! Help!

  14. 24

    says

    staying organized and needing more hours in the day! its hard to focus on marketing when i am shooting, editing, retruning calls, booking and trying to keep the dishes washed!

  15. 25

    says

    I guess my biggest struggle in marketing is knowing what to do or what works. I think maybe it’s just takes trial and error to find what works best :)

  16. 26

    says

    My biggest obstacle is language. I’m English, but now living with my wife in Germany and I really don’t speak much of the language at all.

    I’m in the position where I really need to start earning some money soon (photography is my only source of income), which is, of course, practically impossible locally without unique marketing materials that will really make me stand out from the crowd.

    I have someone who could translate these materials into German and then assist me with shoots, but I obviously need something to help me get over this major disadvantage I have, compared to the German-speaking competition.

    Please help!

    Many thanks for running this competition (as well as the very useful site)! The recent posts ‘Hobbyist To Professional’ have been especially helpful.

  17. 27

    says

    my biggest obstacle is getting enough people to put a portfolio together and starting a webpage people can go to and see my work. i think another problem i have is not being sure what to charge peole and feeling bad when i try to charge them a competitive price

  18. 28

    Gina says

    My biggest struggle is trying to come up with a plan to market and how I should
    market, and I should market to. I know thr basics, i just can’t seem
    to apply them to me.

  19. 29

    says

    I think our biggest marketing issue is getting back what we had. We were pretty much word of mouth with our clients, their friends and family as well as vendors. When a snafu happened with our webhost we lost 35 contact forms which hurt us this year. Hence we lost all the subsequent word of mouth work we would have had as well. So that is what we are up against right now…

  20. 30

    Kahla says

    Marketing has definitely been a big hurdle. I’ve spent a good chunk advertising in the paper and still haven’t gained any clients. I need more ideas on what to do and how to get out there. Granted I just started out and I know it will probably take awhile, but it would be great to have something to help guide my business.

  21. 31

    Damon Crawley says

    I’m with Terry. Everything is still in progress but, getting there. Just constant practice, practice, practice.

  22. 32

    says

    My biggest obstacle in getting started is intimidation. It’s a daunting feat to dive in head first, but I know it must be done.

  23. 34

    says

    My biggest struggle, honestly, is really feeling that I am legit…legit enough to have marketing materials, a real website, and to charge something even close to market value. Sometimes, I look at other photography websites and feel like I really could charge more, or more to the point, maybe if I charged more I would be taken more seriously, but then I don’t want to make myself prohibitively expensive just for the sake of feeling legit and/or being able to buy the equipment I really want.

  24. 35

    Kelli T says

    I’m a marketing manager by day so my biggest struggle is trying not to do too much too quickly. I have tons of ideas but I really need to edit myself to determine where to put the money and what I absolutely need to get a good return on my investment.

  25. 39

    Melissa Abbey says

    Without a doubt, my biggest struggle starting my business is my limited financial resources. I’d love to invest in some photography seminars, join a pro association, upgrade my camera body, add another lens, purchase some more software and upgrade my monitor.

  26. 42

    says

    Our biggest struggle was figuring out who we wanted to market too. it took quite awhile before we realised that we control who hears our message and knows our brand.

  27. 43

    Melissa says

    I’m still in the planning stages of trying to get the legalities taken care of and finding the time and energy to devote to my family and business planning. Currently work full time, have 3 kids with 2 of them under the age of four. Trying to gain the confidence and coming up with the creativity to make a good business. I have the desire, just issues with finding the time and my target of customers.

  28. 44

    says

    I am having a hard time getting my name out there. I don’t know if it’s because I am young and my age group is just getting married/starting families and don’t quite have the resources yet for custom photography or they like the competition better! This series has really helped my confidence though to keep chugging along!

  29. 46

    Christine O says

    Just starting out.. my biggest obstacle is wanting it all .. NOW! It’s tough to keep reminding myself that all these things take time (years!).. it’s so easy to get impatient at times and want the clients, latest equipment, cute website, packaging ect right away when you see everyone whos work you look up to daily. :)

  30. 56

    says

    Feeling confident in my work. I’m afraid of putting myself out there to fail. I need confidence in my work that other people see, but I’m still afraid.

    Feeling confident in my pricing and not backing down from it.

    I feel weak a lot in my posing. I don’t want to be a POSER, I want to capture my clients being natural and in their normal interaction with each other, but for some reason, when I do a session, I fall right back into poses! UGH!

  31. 58

    Lisa Norris says

    My biggest struggle in getting started in business (aside from getting more education and experience) is finding the time to actually work on my business. Between a full time job, and a full time husband and 15 month old, the only time I really have is when the baby goes to sleep around 9:30 or 10:00 and then I’m exhausted!

  32. 60

    says

    Money, of course! What to invest in, where to put the dollars in the smartest place. What if I get no business and I’ve wasted my hard earned dollars.

  33. 61

    Marie Schenck says

    Financially it has been really hard to get my business started. My husband just started his own business at the beginning of the year and I am a SAHM, so money has been really tight. I’m sure a lot of people are in the same boat right now. It is just really hard to have ideas or equipment to buy and a budget that doesn’t include those items. I have to really think outside the box…and enter a lot of contests! lol!

  34. 62

    says

    I have a hard time knowing how to market my business past word of mouth. A majority of my clients come from referrals, which is awesome, but I wish I was better at soliciting business myself.

  35. 67

    Gosia says

    My biggest struggle is with marketing. I can’t seem to get my name out there – nothing seems to work.

  36. 71

    Kristi W. says

    My biggest challenge so far? I have to get more confidence in myself and my abilities. I practice a lot and really know my camera, but I still get really nervous before a shoot.

  37. 73

    says

    My biggest obstacle? T-I-M-E! Since recently beginning, I have had an incredible response and a steady flow of sessions. I cannot, however, justify quitting my full-time job until I have worked through the first phase of my business plan and emerged into a sustainable small business. Creating/developing the products used in my marketing plan takes time away from processing my sessions, which lowers my turn-around time. A marketing pack and posing guide would save me the TIME in development and research!

  38. 74

    says

    Getting started – Transitioning from a FT Corp career into my photog business – Posing knowledge and getting the word out are my two areas of opportunity

  39. 75

    says

    my biggest struggle is getting people into natural poses. Sometimes it just doesn’t feel natural and I haven’t figured it out yet.

  40. 76

    says

    My biggest struggle with marketing is I’m just not sure how or where to begin! How do you compete with long-standing photographers as well as tons of new ones in the same area? Should I specialize? Where do I advertise? SO many questions!!

  41. 78

    says

    I am currently building my portfolio as I want to launch my business this summer sometime. My biggest obstacle is getting the message of my style/vision to come across clearly.

  42. 79

    says

    biggest struggle marketing my business: I am NOT a social bumblebee. I am a homebody and spend all my days working at my desk. What’s the point of working that hard to do great work when only a small amount of people have even seen it? I ask myself that question almost every day… while I sit at my desk and work.

  43. 80

    says

    I am not a writer so professional written contracts
    etc would be the most helpful for me.

    coming in second: finding a space suitable to open a studio that i can afford :)

  44. 82

    says

    I think the biggest problem for me is not only getting the word out its a lot to how to get started and where to go from there. Marketing materials are expensive, starting out its hard to get started where you want to be for your business. Plus I am not creative at all. Coming up with a great, cool, fun design is where I get totally stuck on.

    I want to target the clients that are what I want to do business with but getting that information and knowing where to go is where I get over whelmed and never follow through.

  45. 86

    Shmika Harris says

    My biggest challenge has been being able to find the materials to teach me on how to market by brais I live in a rural country town in south GA where there are no real book stores actually not real kind of any store accept walm-mart I cannot seem find that inspiration needed to set me off anf just make me go go go. I just don’t know where to start as far as putting my business plan together and don’t know who or where to go to ask for assistance.

  46. 88

    says

    I started up my business….and then had morning sickness so bad in January through, well, now that I had to “pause” for the time being. When I had started last fall, my biggest struggle was marketing myself. I had plenty of friends who wanted pics, but I was wanting more opportunities to do shoots for people I hadn’t met yet.

  47. 90

    says

    My biggest struggle in marketing is getting the word out about my business. I feel like if I had a visual plan my business could grow and can be taken to the next level. I am a talented photographer in my area however, I just do not have the know how to get out there and let the word be known about me.

  48. 92

    says

    My biggest challenge with marketing is deciding what to use to entice my clients. Right now I rely on word of mouth. I want to create some brochures or booklets or something, but I just need that push of motivation. Less procrastination.

  49. 93

    says

    I struggle with understanding what my Unique Selling Proposition, or USP, is. Someone once told me that talent is not enough and it is so true. With so many of us shooting and starting businesses, a person really has to understand the marketing end of their talent and really go at it with the force of a cat 5 hurricane. So, currently I’m trying to sort out my “battle plan” so to speak. Honestly, I just need a rockin’ card to hand someone…baby steps! *follower on Twitter and Facebook*

  50. 94

    simone says

    My biggest obstacle is finding the words to go along with the images…I have a hard time expressing myself in words!

  51. 95

    heather says

    My biggest struggle is pricing. I don’t feel professional enough yet to charge that much yet. And I really would love to just sell photos and not cds. But for now, that’s all I’m offering. Working full time and doing pictures on the side is tough, especially mixing in children, houeswork, husband, church, and other activities.

    But I’m not complaining, maybe one day I’ll be big enough to just do photography all the time. :o) So I’m starting slow and will work my way up.

    The photo has nothing to do with this but I just wanted to add one of my fav from one of my photo sessions this past month. (might be too bright on the white but still learning post processing too.) :o)

  52. 96

    Karla says

    Not in business yet. I’m building my portafolio, but I guess people aren’t taking me seriously. So far that is my biggest challenge. Your recent entries have shown me a lot. Thanks for sharing what you know.

  53. 98

    Christa says

    I’m so caught up with the technical aspect that sometimes the posing of my clients come more of a struggle

  54. 99

    says

    The biggest challenge right now is setting my pricing. As I’m just starting out, I’m shooting a lot of friends and friends of friends. I’m struggling with choosing prices that don’t price out my friends, but still are competitive with the market.

  55. 101

    says

    My biggest problem is finding the time to implement my marketing ideas! I have all of these great things floating around in my head, it’s just actually taking the time to do them.

  56. 103

    says

    For me, just like many others, it’s the money. It’s hard to start any business without the money to get it going. I would love beautiful marketing products to get my name out there, but it’s just so expensive for me right now.

  57. 104

    Christal says

    My biggest struggle is getting the word out there about my business. I feel as if I had a visual plan my options could be taken to the next level. I am a talented photgrapher in my area so I am not concerned about my talents. I just do not know how to get out there and get the word known about my business and bring in the clients.

  58. 107

    Glennen says

    I haven’t gotten started yet. Fear is what’s holding me back… I don’t know enough… just need to jump :)

  59. 108

    Melissa Thiem says

    My biggest obstacle getting started in business is not knowing exactly where to start! I’m not sure about pricing, about finding clientale, and if my work is good enough! I feel ready to make money, but have yet to start!

  60. 111

    says

    Since I just started my business and have little revenue…knowing what events to participate in is hardest for me. Do you go for ones that cost A LOT but could have a lot of people are smaller ones with little cost and a few people? With little revenue it’s hard to take the plunge for the big stuff.

  61. 113

    says

    Sjo, these two prizes are amazing. At the moment, my biggest obstacle is to ‘brand’ myself. There is so many directions to go, it is difficult to choose one.

  62. 115

    says

    My biggest struggle in marketing my business is my worry that the marketing I do will not appear professional! I worry about making the wrong impression and so I don’t do anything!

  63. 116

    Linda says

    My biggest marketing obstacle has been my budget. Since I’m not making any money yet and I’m still buying much needed equipment, I can’t really invest in marketing. I’d love to get my work into a local coffeeshop or the pediatrician’s office, etc, but I don’t have the money to invest in the amount of prints it would take to do this.

  64. 117

    says

    My biggest obstacle is that I’m not confident in my photography yet. Also I don’t have a lot of people to take pictures of on a regular basis in order to continue practicing.

  65. 118

    stace says

    My biggest obstacle is fear. Fear of failure, fear of disappointing someone…fear of being successful and having my hobby no longer be fun..but work…I guess I’m just a big scardy cat! LOL

  66. 119

    Stacey Allison says

    Lack of confidence in myself. Reading professional resources and education as you mentioned in an earlier post helps with this lack of confidence though.

  67. 121

    Michelle says

    My biggest struggle right now is that I feel overwhelmed because there is so much. I don’t even know WHERE to start. So I think something like this could really help me. Thanks for this posting this series and for the chance to win.

  68. 125

    says

    I’m just getting started with my business, and my biggest struggle is just knowing where to start with marketing! It all seems overwhelming at this point!

  69. 127

    says

    My biggest marketing obstacle has been simply spreading the word in a small town with no marketing budget to speak of. Luckily I managed to nail a few chatty easy-to-please and rather connected women for my first clients and they told everyone they knew.

    My biggest obstacle is myself. My insecurities, self doubt and wondering if I’m “good enough” to actually charge money for what I do. Still working on that but it’s coming :) Someone once long ago told me that in identifying one’s target market and setting up pricing, don’t always include yourself in the target market. Gauging your prices based on what I would pay is not always the most accurate way to go. I constantly remind myself that I’m not in my target market.

  70. 128

    says

    There are 2 big obstacles, right now: 1) the economy! 2) handling the administrative side of the business: such as when a client buys a package, then decides they don’t want a certain part of the package & wants a refund, or helping clients that suddenly need everything NOW even though that’s simply not possible.

    Of course, I’m always look for more ways to get the word out & around town. : ) I’ve got my client base started but I’d like to build it further.

  71. 129

    says

    my biggest challenge is just staying on top of marketing! i have ideas but actually taking the time in my busy schedule to create them, have them printed and use them is a whole other story! :)

  72. 130

    says

    I’m just starting and it seems like photographers willing to be mentors are few and far between. I would love to find a professional who is willing to teach me more, but it’s like there is a secret handshake to get in this club and no one will share it! It’s frustrating and sad all at the same time. But I guess that is why I am even more determined to find every single resource available and learn, learn, learn!

  73. 132

    says

    my biggest struggle is just developing a good client base–people that love my stuff and are happy to spread the word about me. :) i know if i could get the ball rolling, word of mouth would be my best friend. :)

  74. 134

    says

    My biggest challenge is time! My first job is being a mom to my two young girls and balancing how
    much time editing pictures and out on photo shoots. There is no time left for marketing. I’m so excited about all the potential business but the time I don’t have has limited me. Which uou can also see by my minimal blogspot.

  75. 135

    says

    Biggest obstacle to getting started right now is TIME. My husband’s finishing his degree, we both work full-time, and have a 3 yr old son, so, finding time to work on my portfolio and improve my editing skills is a real challenge right now.

  76. 139

    says

    My biggest struggle is charging friends what I need to charge them to make it worthwhile. I don’t have the ‘business’ heart, I want to cut deals way too often, but luckily my husband keeps me in line and makes me charge what I need to. :)

  77. 142

    says

    My biggest challenge is what to do and where to start. What to use to get my name out there. Where to spend some money that will make me money. I never know who to turn to for advice.

  78. 144

    brandy T says

    I am just now trying to get in the business and my biggest struggle is trying not to be like everyone else out there. It seems there are so many cookie cutter sites and I don’t want to be one of those.

  79. 146

    says

    I’ve been trying to get my business off the ground for five years now. I’ve had several big walls to hurdle. Financially, it’s been a hard time trying to come up with the money you have to invest up front in equipment, marketing, etc. I also have a full time job that takes a large chunk of my time that I’d like to invest in building my company. Lastly, I was diagnosed with MS in 2007. I don’t have any major physical disabilities yet but I do have symptoms that disrupt the flow that would make getting things going a lot easier. I thank God for my wonderful business-minded boyfriend who is now helping me move forward.

  80. 147

    says

    What is your biggest struggle marketing your business? Getting the branding and information together so that it looks attractive. Knowing where to effectively distribute the materials also.

  81. 148

    says

    Wow, this an awesome giveaway! My biggest marketing problem so far is that I have such a small circle of friends that it has been hard to get out into the real world. I really need some ideas for local marketing!!

  82. 157

    says

    My biggest hurdle with starting my business is setting prices. I keep feeling bad for wanting to raise the prices. I feel like I’m being cruel. However, I’ve recently started telling myself, “I am worth more than being paid less than minimum wage.”

  83. 159

    Tommy says

    So far, the biggest thing is just building a clientele. I’ve been fortunate enough to do some great portfolio building with friends and they are doing their best to get the word out.

  84. 160

    says

    My biggest obsticale is myself…I have so much going on in my head, so many thoughts and ideas for marketing that I don’t know how to organize and communicate them on paper.

  85. 161

    says

    I would love either the marketing pack or posing guides. I have not marketed myself at all – have only photographed family and friends up to this point. I don’t even know where to begin – so I am struggling just with the initial contact. When I am on a shoot my mind often goes blank as far as posing – the guide would be perfect for me!

  86. 162

    says

    I would say my biggest obstacle to getting started is probably fear – that I’m not good enough, that I’ll fail . . .

  87. 165

    says

    The biggest challenge with marketing is trying to get your name out there amongst other talented photographers who have been around for 10+ years. They have longevity and a much larger word-of-mouth base workin’ for them!

    – Chelsea :)

  88. 170

    Shelle Reck says

    I’m just getting started. My biggest stumbling block is building a client base. We are a military family so I don’t have the luxury of being near a lot of friends family to help me with the PB process. At this point I’m trying to put my big girl panties on and just JUMP! :)

  89. 171

    Tracey says

    My biggest obstacle to marketing has simply been getting started and doing something, anything…! I need to get going!

  90. 172

    says

    My biggest challenge is getting over the shyness of charging acquaintances and of asking people to market me word-of-mouth by telling their friends about me.

  91. 174

    says

    I am not yet in business but am getting closer. Initially the biggest obstacle was learning the skills set to being a good photographer. Then it was getting the basic equipment together. Now the biggest obstacle is a combination of “what if no one wants to hire me” fear and the “where will I find the time”. I think that the first obstacle is an unreasonable fear because … you’ve gotta try … right? The second obstacle I think is a bit more difficult because it would not only be working with my schedule, but the schedule of the clients.

  92. 175

    says

    My biggest struggle marketing my business is generating interest in my target audience and building word-of-mouth reputation.

  93. 176

    says

    My Budget. I don’t have a big one to buy good marketing materials.

    Another thing would probably be my age. I’m 21 and when people see my porfolio they are very interested, but once I meet them in person they don’t take me seriously. I have to act very professional which sometimes gets in the way of bringing out their personality. During the shoot, they freeze up and so do I!! Ugh! So I know the posing guide would really help!

  94. 177

    jen says

    Biggest obstacle in getting started is finding people to practice on! I am still skill building, and need practice posing!… The Design Aglow posing guide would be Awesome!

  95. 180

    says

    My biggest obstacle to getting started is the fear of not being able to make my customers comfortable during a photoshoot. To that end I’ve been practicing extensively with friends, but they’re friends and I’m already comfortable with them in a way.

  96. 182

    says

    A huge obstacle for me is finding the courage to just get out there and find the people and resources I need to get things rolling. The costs involved are through the roof for the things that I need to get started. Every resource certainly will help me out tremendously!

  97. 186

    says

    Let’s see, between working full time in IT, full time mom, full time daughter, full time wife, full time cook, laundress, chauffeur, dog walker, girlfriend and part time photographer, part time idea guru- does not leave me a whole heck of a lot of time for creative marketing strategies. I see many folks here with the same issue: time to sit and create a brand and market yourself to create that needed buzz….I’ll settle for some extra minutes in a day and at the very least a head start in the right direction with a marketing package :-)

  98. 194

    says

    I believe that my biggest struggle is giving directions as to posing to models and families. I have an idea of what I want but I have a hard time communicating my ideas.

  99. 195

    says

    My biggest problem is that i seem to have more friends than i thought. everyone wants a discount or FREE. i have a hard time telling them i have to charge, its a small town so i really do know everyone.

  100. 196

    says

    My biggest struggle is “TIME”! I just dont have time to develop the appopriate marketing materials that I should be using. Outside of the business materials, my biggest struggle is posing! I have such anxiety over the perfect and unique pose! Thanks guiding readers to these resources!!

  101. 201

    says

    My biggest struggle in marketing is knowing WHERE to market…online? On local blogs? On big websites like the Knot? In local magazines? Or should I just keep with word of mouth?

  102. 202

    Tiffany says

    I have a hard time getting started b/c we keep moving! The military has moved us 3 times in a little over a year and I have to start all over again each time :(

  103. 204

    says

    I am horrible with the whole social media thing! I feel like it’s a great market but I just fall short in that whole area.

  104. 207

    Robert Wyatt says

    My biggest obstacle right now is portfolio building. I need sev qual images to have for a web site..then I can hang my shingle out.

  105. 209

    Gwendolyn Chambers says

    Pricing! Finding the balance between too high and too low. And being comfortable asking for what I know I deserve. Then feeling ok if the person will not/can not meet that price. Sometimes when someone doesn’t book I second-guess myself.

  106. 211

    says

    My biggest marketing issue is not knowing if I am putting my time and money into the right areas that will target the right people. I am finding that the best way to sell myself is to let others do it for me through word of mouth!

  107. 213

    says

    My biggest flaw is my brain! I love being with people, love capturing life for them but when it comes to the “Business” side of my business I suck! Thanks for the chance to win awesome help :)

  108. 216

    says

    My biggest struggle is making the jump from part time to full time photographer. I still wrestle with giving up my steady current income.

  109. 219

    michelle riebeek says

    I’m scared i’ll get there and run out of posing ideas and look stupid. I would really love the posing guide, I think it could really help me get going.

  110. 220

    says

    I feel like word of mouth has been fabulous to me!! I don’t have any major plans on marketing right now. But the buisness side/pricing is a huge struggle for me!!

  111. 222

    Annie says

    I’ve been in business for about 2 years and have noticed that my biggest struggle with marketing is finding the time to really build a brand, in the middle of all the sessions, weddings and edits needed for client galleries.

  112. 223

    says

    Right now, I’m just starting out. It’s all so new and fresh…but while I’m portfolio building and getting my “ducks in a row” – I’m afraid I can’t quit my day job to support my photography business…so I guess it’s more financial right now.

  113. 224

    Mallory Urquhart says

    My biggest obstacle to getting started, is probably time. I have two young children and I work full time and my husband has school. I have goals and a timeline though. I will get there and i plan to do so within the next year and a half to two years.

  114. 225

    Dawn says

    My biggest struggle in marketing is knowing the right places to put my literature in order to target the right people. Everything has been word of mouth, which is great. Now if only I could expand it further. I am also having a lot of trouble figuring the best/most cost effective way to get a website started. This blog has been extremely helpful to me on many levels. :-)

  115. 226

    says

    My biggest obstacle to getting started is believing in myself – i.e. putting forth a confident foot so others believe in me as well.

  116. 227

    says

    I have been told by my husband that I am afraid of my prices. I have since made a price sheet that I mail out to all my clients that schedule an session. That has helped a lot. I have also had a hard time with flyers. I made some really cool ones for Seniors 2010 and I had my timing all wrong, so it was a flop. Timing is everything in marketing.

  117. 229

    Misty Ballard says

    I think my biggest struggle with marketing is coming up with a design that ties it all together and looks professional.

  118. 230

    says

    The biggest struggle marketing right now is getting all the materials developed so they have a cohesive look. That is why the marketing pack would be awesome. Once I have everything together then I feel like it will be easier to bring in the business.

  119. 234

    says

    The biggest obstacle with marketing is selling myself. I tend to be on the shy side, so putting myself “out there” is a challenge. My goal this summer is to market bigger and better than I have been. It’s a little bit of exciting mixed with a little bit of terrifying!

  120. 236

    says

    I’ve just launched my photography business so i feel like everything is a struggle starting out with Marketing…The business I’ve received so far is great with referrals but I would love to get my name out there more.

  121. 237

    says

    My biggest problem is time management while shooting. I find myself shooting looooong after the agreed upon {see paid} time is over.

  122. 239

    Tracy Lynn says

    I REALLY REALLY want to start my photography business!! My biggest obstacle… simply that I am SCARED TO DEATH to do sessions of people I don’t know!! I am really unfamiliar with posing and I feel like I just don’t know how to pose them and interact with them to get the shots I want. I would LOVE to have the posing guides…I think this would be a huge help… thinking it would help me to relax a little…which would probably make the clients more relaxed and end up with better images!! Thank you so much!! :)

  123. 240

    Jennifer Campbell says

    My biggest obstacle is confidence. I’m just going to keep on practicing and moving forward.

  124. 241

    christy schmid says

    Tough question…there are so many obstacle to starting my business. I am not business savvy at all. I have 3 school aged daughters that I stayed at home and raised and was not in the work force. I have so many questions about business information (ex. taxes, business license, what to charge, finances) that I get overwhelmed and scared. Your articles have been great and I am about to take a class on some of this stuff. Taking a leap of faith is hard for me. Christy

  125. 245

    Kristin says

    Ooooh, I’m a huge Angie fan!!! I’m just getting started & I think my biggest obstacle is myself — feeling confident enough that I’m getting exactly the shots I want rather than hit or miss. Reading every book I can on exposure because I know that’s where it all starts. Thanks for this contest — crossing my fingers & toes!

  126. 255

    says

    one word … CONFIDENCE! also time has been an issue (and sleep since i’m up all night reading, learning, and editing) but i know my littlest will be in school soon enough *sigh* and i’ll get my time back to really focus. :) i’ve really enjoyed your recent series! i had decided maybe this obsession of mine should be put on the back-burner, maybe forever, until i read the first in your series. at 41, i’m feeling a renewed sense of trying to make it happen and i actually feel a little giddy for the first time in a long time! lol! i don’t want to wonder “what if” in another 10 years. thanks for that. you rock! :)

  127. 257

    Annie Heng-Tse says

    My biggest obstacle in getting started is figuring out what companies to use for various things such as website hosting, picture ordering, and marketing.

  128. 260

    Yu says

    I haven’t started yet and one of my biggest obstacles is to have the confidence i need to build up the trust with clients…

  129. 261

    Kathleen says

    I really struggle with where to find my target market. I have lots of people who want me to take their photos bur not necessarily at the prices I want to be at.

  130. 262

    Heather says

    I just moved to a new area and am struggling to break out, spread the word and catch some new clients.

  131. 267

    Darien says

    My biggest struggle right now is finding people to practice on. I don’t have kiddos yet & live out in the country so it’s hard to find a plethora of kiddos to practice with. I need to put out some advertising for portfolio building but am hesitant because I don’t have a cohesive mktg/logo design or client communications ready yet. Argh!

  132. 270

    says

    i think the hardest thing about marketing for me is figuring out which products to buy that will actually work. i don’t want to ‘waste’ money…that i don’t have! haha.

  133. 274

    says

    Right now education is still my biggest hurdle but after that, where do all those first clients come from??

    What a great series!!

  134. 277

    Erika says

    My biggest struggle is that I feel like my area is saturated with new photographers! I need some help marketing so that I am the ‘WOW’ we need her photographer!

  135. 278

    says

    My biggest struggle is stepping up and saying hey I am a photographer, and I am good. I work solely based on word of mouth now, and have the whole “I am new and not that great so I am going to charge less complex”

  136. 279

    says

    My biggest obstacle with getting started in the business is not the capital needed, the business knowledge, the knowledge and practice of proper photography techniques, working with clients, editing knowledge, or getting a website up and running… the biggest obstacle I face is the confidence to move forward. It may just be time to jump in… but it’s hard to make the leap.

  137. 280

    says

    The hardest part of marketing for me is finding potential clients, getting together my portfolio and then differentiating myself from other people…still so much to learn.

  138. 281

    says

    I would have to say is people trusting me to take their pictures. I have been doing family and friends for free (for now!) and they seem happy with their results! I am in the early early stages, so I am trying to get more then friends and family. The From Hobbyist to Professional has been very beneficial! I find it amazing!

  139. 283

    Molly says

    Not in biz yet, so my biggest obstacle is just figuring out where to get started and the whole works! Your series has been really beneficial to me!

  140. 284

    Miranda Glaeser says

    My biggest obstacle getting started is knowing how to run a shoot. Since I’ve never really done it, it holds me back. I keep thinking, if I could just see one in person, then I could do it myself. So I guess “the unknown” is my biggest obstacle.

  141. 288

    Jessica Hilborn says

    Not yet in business. My biggest struggle to starting is having the time (between working and being a mom to 3 little ones) to get a website, blog, logo, etc established and the money and “know how” to do so. I would LOVE some help in these areas!

  142. 290

    Melanie Pitcher says

    My biggest obstacle that’s keeping me from starting a business is I don’t even know where to start finding clients!

  143. 292

    Linda Blank says

    My biggest obstacle to marketing is the demographics where we live. Not enough high incomes levels to get a lot of money for photography. It’s more the JCPenny photo crowd so it’s hard to market effectively and earn enough money for this crowd.

  144. 296

    says

    There is no doubt good marketing will help with building my business. I started my business over 5 years ago, in my late 20’s. I took a 2 year hiatus to have my third child. All the while, I have always had a “day job” while I built up my photography business. It is amazing how 2 years off will affect your business. Due to a hard drive failure, I lost all of my previous client’s info. So I am basically starting over and it is a long and painful process. :) My husband lost his job in Jan. (Still unemployed, now full time student) I just lost my “day job” of 10 years last week. I feel so overwhelmed with trying to organize my time to best serve in building my business back up. It is do or die, because I have to pay the bills! I have been looking into a marketing packet but all of my spending is on hold until something breaks. This would be such a tremendous blessing. Thanks for your consideration. Sincerely, Suzanne

  145. 297

    natalie lawson says

    i’m not so sure i ever want to make this a business, but i do think that if i ever did go that route, i think the biggest hurdle for me would being assertive with pricing. i’m not good enough to charge right now, but if i ever did get good enough, asking someone for money wouldn’t be easy!

  146. 298

    Sarah Goodsell says

    I’m OVERWHELMED!!!! haha Where do I start is my biggest problem I have so many starting places I just need to start finishing some.

  147. 300

    samantha carless says

    My biggest struggle is in budgeting marketing money wisely ~ where to spend in order to make the best impact! :)

    *thanks!!

  148. 301

    Heather says

    Just now thinking about trying to start out. I think my biggest obstacle is just trying to figure out what to do first and trying to find the time to do it.

  149. 304

    Denise Glenn says

    I’m pretty much at the beginning of my photography journey. This blog has been such an inspiration and confirmation that I CAN DO THIS! There are still lots of puzzle pieces missing, but the path is much brighter and inviting since I found MCP. The biggest obstacle for me at this point is building my skill and confidence and knowing how to pose and direct a client through a photo session in order to instill the feelings/emotions and confidence they need to project their “true selves” to the camera. I know it’s in me somewhere! 😉 Thanks for this series–it’s invaluable!

  150. 305

    says

    finding the right words and ideas for the idea and then the time to create the marketing piece. Sometimes it takes me 20 minutes just to answer a simple email.

  151. 307

    Dana McDevitt says

    I’m just starting and I’m having the hardest time breaking away from the friends and family clients…I can’t seem to reach the friends of friends.

  152. 308

    says

    Marketing isn’t my strong point. I’m just starting my business and am lost on where to start! Keeping my fingers….double crossed 😉

  153. 312

    Jessica says

    I have had great luck this year with posting on craigslist but when people google “wedding photographers” my site doesn’t come up…at least not in the first few hundred!

  154. 314

    says

    I need to learn to market myself to a wider group. I have my small group of clients and have gotten quite a bit of new business through word of mouth, but I would like to branch out further to new areas and I’m not quite sure the best way to do so.

  155. 317

    Mindy U says

    My biggest struggle is just knowing where to get started!!! It’s very time consuming and overwhelming!

  156. 319

    says

    The biggest marketing struggle for me is most definitely charging properly. If I were independently wealthy, I’d do this for free, because I love photographing people so much. I’m always having to stop myself from underselling myself–giving away my work for too little in return.

  157. 320

    says

    My biggest challenge when it comes to marketing my business is having a consistent design with which to do it. I want to be cohesive and consistent with my products including whatever designs I have for marketing. I don’t know much about graphic design, so I just fend for myself as best I can! This series has been great, Thanks!

  158. 321

    says

    My biggest struggle currently is how to charge for portfolio building and getting all of the contract material ready.

  159. 324

    says

    My biggest stuggle is marketing and gaining an initial client base. (Just starting out in the portrait photography arena). Need to know how to price and market to my target clients in multiple areas.

  160. 325

    says

    My biggest obstacle, I think, is my website. I created it when I first started doing photography for other people…and I HATE the way it looks! I know it is a direct reflection on me and my work (and it’s so outdated), but having a full time job, 3 kiddos, and photography on the side, I just do not have the time to put into self teaching myself how to get that elegant, flash player, no right-click site that I want! (as well as easy to maintain and update!) As of now, I intentionally do not make/distribute business cards or offer any specials/discounts, simply because I do not have time to even accept all of the business that I get calls for. Right now I turn a lot of business down…but I am planning on moving to a new area this summer and basically startng from scratch…so I found the info in step 4 so very beneficial! I especially love the friends and family pricing, as I also struggle with that! By the time I do “favors” for friends and family…I do not have time to do any “real” business! lol I could so benefit from the info in step 4 and this contest’s prizes!

  161. 328

    Karen Mades says

    My biggest obsticle in getting a business underway is developing a website and leading potential sutomers to it. I live in the
    Detroit area that has been hit so hard economically, so I also have a problem with what to charge without “giving things away”. I have been working with several people that I know who have allowed me to take photos of them for my portfolio, but now would like to take it a step further.

  162. 329

    says

    I think my biggest challenge is selling myself and knowing how to do that. That includes knowing the right price poivt vs. where to find those clients at. :)

  163. 335

    says

    What is your biggest struggle marketing your business?

    To overcome the “affordable” label and have the focus more on talent and style.

  164. 336

    Connie McClain says

    I’m working on getting started in my business, and this series has really helped me out more than you can imagine! But my biggest obstacle to getting started is really myself. I don’t have the confidence in myself and starting a business is such a big thing…very scary…I don’t want to mess up!

  165. 339

    Michelle Johnson says

    The biggest obstacle that I have in getting started in business is developing my talent to a point where I feel comfortable charging.

  166. 343

    Doel says

    Wow, I don’t even know where to begin. You know, sometimes I feel that I have to much information and don’t and sometimes not enough. So I must keep on reading and studying this series. But all of it helps. Thanks!

  167. 345

    Eva Shaugnessy says

    This would be a nice win as I have never heard of a guide before but I have learned that a price sheet is good to have on hand. The added marketing technique would be a great added feature for me. I was just getting around to putting something together but time is my hardest priority. I also appreciate the added comments from others who help feel like im not alone on stating right where im at too~!

  168. 347

    says

    My biggest struggle in marketing is just really knowing where to start. I always ask myself what do I put my time and effort into that will get me the best results/the biggest benefit to my business. I just don’t what to do a lot of useless things, if there’s one or two more important things. Hope that makes sense.

  169. 349

    says

    Google analytics is amazing. It’s telling me that lots of people are going to my website, then they leave after less than a minute and I get no calls. It looks like my biggest marketing challenge is my online presence, which is super important these days.

  170. 351

    Robin Morse says

    The biggest obstacle to getting started for me right now is the time and money. I work full time and am also a mom. I shoot as much as possible but I wish for more time to shoot for practice and to get my business finally up and running.

  171. 352

    AmyC says

    My biggest obstacle in getting started is having the confidence to charge money for my photos! Another is balancing work/family time!

  172. 353

    Tara S. says

    My biggest struggle in getting started is having the resources to create a brand image that represents me AND stands out amongst everyone else.

  173. 355

    says

    My biggest obstacle is the fact that there are so many photography businesses out there and I need to figure out how to make my work stand out.

  174. 360

    says

    I have a tough time deciding where to put into. I’ve been burned by a few agencies and am still paying for it. There just isn’t that magic “Awesome Marketing” button.

  175. 364

    says

    With just starting a business, I haven’t been able to market too much. Most of my business has been through word of mouth and it’s been great but I would really like to up my game!

  176. 369

    Galina says

    struggle – probably it is hard to choose efficient form of advertising – all this facebook, magazine ads, newspapers and more – it is frustrating

  177. 371

    says

    My biggest struggle, as a perfectionist, is knowing what’s RIGHT as far as contracts, paperwork, pricing, proofing, etc. There are so many different ways to work this business and so many awesome examples, but I’m in a fog trying to figure out what’s best for me. Getting the business stuff worked out is probably my biggest obstacle. I’m sure homeschooling the 4 remaining kids at home doesn’t really help me be as focused as I could/should be on the business!

  178. 372

    Gladys Hedaya says

    My greatest obstacle is the unpredictability of getting the exposure right outdoors. I don’t want to miss the shot by fooling around with my camera. In essence, I’m concerned with marrying the technical and artistic side of photography.

  179. 373

    says

    My biggest obstacle is trying to maintain my blog and website, I have found less and less people look at the website so I am working on doing more marketing through my blog and considering doing away with the website once and for all.

  180. 374

    Debora says

    Not enough time to put everything together! My time goes to the perfections of the photos and also my family!

  181. 375

    says

    I would like to stand out from the competition in order to find my demographic and appeal to them.
    I feel I need to let people know that I am the right choice for them and then the word of mouth will
    have a life of it’s own…a specialized marketing pack would be a good choice for me at the moment.
    Would love to win!
    Thanks so much for the opportunity.
    xo

  182. 378

    says

    My biggest struggle is balancing marketing and shooting and editing – everything involved with running a business by myself. Marketing always takes a back seat.

  183. 379

    Sherri Dale says

    my biggest struggle in marketing is that I am new to the area (I moved here to be with my husband). The few people that I do know have been a great source of word of mouth advertising, but I think some people hear about me, but have trouble finding me because they don’t know me (or know my husband, but don’t know I am married to him – we have different last names).

  184. 380

    JeninWA says

    I haven’t started, I’m still learning. I am gleaning everything I can from you…this would be a great bonus!

  185. 381

    says

    my biggest trouble in marketing my business is networking and just getting my business out there to brides. Word of mouth is the greatest thing ever, but I’d like to also market outside of this and see results. I know networking with other vendors is a huge help but I feel stuck with this as I am shy by nature! I would also like to brand myself more and offer a more professional prescence to future clients.

  186. 383

    says

    My biggest issue is talking about myself. I can give them any piece of marketing info I print but when it comes to talking about myself I have a rough time – definitely not an outspoken promotor!

  187. 384

    says

    My biggest obstacle is finding the time to update my marketing materials. I always manage to find something else to do so I can push the marketing aside but I know I need to spend more time on marketing!

  188. 386

    Lauren Miller says

    Starting up a business requires a significant investment. My biggest obstacle getting started would be just not having the money for all of the initial costs. It will be something that takes time for me.

  189. 387

    Ashley says

    I am scared to market until I feel confident enough to not ‘screw up’ something for a stranger. I really need to get over that – word of mouth has been great and I keep getting people asking me to do photos for them. I guess maybe I don’t really know where to begin a ‘real’ marketing beyond that.

  190. 388

    emilyK says

    biggest obstacle in getting started is balancing my time between the creative stuff and the business stuff

  191. 390

    says

    I’m very new, haven’t had an official “paid” session yet, and I’m finding it difficult to break past having only friends & family as fans, followers, potential clients, etc. I’m slowly breaking through, but it’s a slow process!

  192. 391

    says

    My biggest obstacle to marketing and starting up my business is to keep focused and not jump into things that are not part of my strategic and marketing plans! I can get excited and sidetracked, spending hours on things that may not be of immediate importance and procrastinating on things that are!
    I also became a fan on facebook and posted a link to this on my blog!

  193. 394

    says

    My biggest struggle marketing my business has been keeping everything together. Remembering all the different things you need to do and then finding the time to do all of them.

  194. 395

    says

    My biggest marketing challenge is……getting clients. I have hosted a contest on my blog and gave free sessions to winners in hopes of gaining more clients. Sadly, there were only 2 people to post comments in order to enter the contest. I have posted “special discounts” on my website and Facebook pages. I have handed out busisness cards. I don’t want to come off pushy so sometimes I don’t mention that I have a photography busisness, I try to let “the potential client” bring it up in conversation. I use Google Analytics and it is a great tool, but I only have a few visitors to my website each day. Most are new visitors, but no one is contacting me. Currently I am revaluating which photgraphs are on my website. My client base sofar has been word-of-mouth, but I want to expand that. Not sure where to start!

    Thanks,
    Frustrated

  195. 398

    Jill Ellison says

    I think one of my biggest struggles is oversaturation so finding that thing that sets me apart and makes me stand out!

  196. 399

    says

    My biggest struggle with starting up a business is taking the giant jump of going into debt for equipment/resources and not knowing whether or not I’ll make up that money and making a living off of my work. Another issue I deal with is lack of self confidence. Curse my being a female.

  197. 402

    michelle says

    I haven’t started a yet, but I think my biggest obstacle would be building an initial client base

  198. 404

    says

    My challenge is that I work full-time in another job and devote my weekends and evenings to photography. I love to devote that time to shooting and being creative, but find it hard to set aside time for the business side of things including marketing and also having a better web presence.

  199. 405

    Emily S says

    Trying to book my target client. I’m trying to switch to not providing the digital images and having a difficult time with this transition.

  200. 408

    says

    I have good friends in the business, and I don’t want to “intrude” on their business. Also, since my husband is a pastor & I’m a teacher (juniors), I don’t want to market myself in a way that makes it seem as if I’m taking advantage of his postion or my position.

  201. 410

    says

    My biggest struggle marketing your business is finding where to start aside from posting comments on blogs and my twitter and such! I feel pretty good about already having started with Social Media though. Thanks for the chance!

  202. 411

    EBPitcher says

    I guess my biggest obstacle is thinking I’m not ready. (I’m probably not, but this series is helping with things I’ve never thought of. Thanks!

  203. 412

    says

    My biggest struggle in marketing my business is being forward enough tell people about what I do. I find it difficult to put it out there…and tend to let my work sell itself. I’m not one to draw attention and my happy place is behind my camera. I also am finding it’s easy to market with a ton of money…I’m really trying to stay out of debt starting this business and spending just what I need on marketing at this point in time. It’s hard not to WANT the next thing.

  204. 413

    Kelly D. says

    My biggest struggle with marketing is finding the time to get started. Also, where to begin?!

  205. 415

    says

    Thanks for this offer!
    My biggest obstacle and struggle in my business-even after 2 years- is being confident in my pricing. I have a lot of clients trying to wiggle the prices down all the time, and I have to learn that my time and my talent is valuable!

  206. 417

    says

    I haven’t taken the plunge yet.. and feel like i need more workshops and learning under my belt before publically announcing..”Hi, Im a Photographer!”

  207. 419

    says

    I think the biggest struggle for me has been building my client base. It seems like everyone is interested, until you start charging.

  208. 420

    says

    My biggest obstacle about getting out there and marketing myself is being confident in myself to strike up conversation or find the finances to use my marketing materials. It doesn’t help that I am sorta homeless right now too! Once we get our belongings, I can focus more on my business. We’ll be in a great neighborhood so hopefully I can start with them.

  209. 422

    says

    My biggest obstacle to getting this off the ground is balancing the business stuff with building my portfolio…I can’t seem to find time in the day to do both (with everything else in my life that demands attention). I’m thinking about giving up sleep though :-)

  210. 423

    Tracy Laulhere says

    I’m just getting started with my business. I think I am the biggest obstacle to marketing my business. I am rather shy and it takes a bit of a push to get myself out there. Once I’m there, I feel really good, but getting out there is sometimes a struggle.

  211. 425

    Susan says

    What is your biggest struggle marketing your business? Finding the clients that fit within my budget. I have the family portraits easily (need more customers) and I’m slowly working into the Senior area, but I really want to make it as a wedding photographer and I just don’t know how to market myself or my blog for this industry. I have 14 weddings under my belt as an assisant, but I can’t get that lead without giving the farm away to get started! Help!

  212. 427

    says

    My biggest struggle in marketing my business is how to correctly market my business. I have finally defined my business and now I seem to be at a loss in the area of marketing. I don’t want to keep marketing unsuccessfully.

  213. 428

    says

    My biggest struggle is figuring out what will work. I try one campaign and it completely fails and another will succeed only to fail later…I can’t figure out what makes a marketing campaign successful. It seems so hit or miss.

  214. 430

    says

    My biggest struggle is getting my name out there in a market that suits my price range. My clients from my area are more price conscious.

  215. 432

    says

    selling myself and pricing are my biggest struggles, but its all difficult in my opinion….if only I could just take the pictures!

  216. 433

    says

    I have been working towards starting my own photography business for the last 6 months or so and my biggest obstacle is fear that my work won’t be good enough.

  217. 434

    Andie says

    I’d say my #1 struggle with marketing is TIME! i work full time job and have a growing part time photog biz and i know i need more time to focus on my photog biz so it can be my sole income. Anything that can help and is turn key is my BFF! That is why i love MCP actions – my workflow has sped up tremendously!

  218. 435

    Jenn S. says

    My biggest obstacle to getting started is my lack of computer/web know-how. I really want to start a blog and have a fabulous website, but I don’t even know where to begin!

  219. 436

    Lacy says

    My biggest obstacle in getting started I have found is the confidence I have in my work. I am super critical of my own work, but I am taking the steps to educate myself on things that I’m insecure about…I think that will help! Once that is overcome I think the next hardest step will be setting my prices.

  220. 438

    stephanie pedersen says

    My biggest struggle is the time, money to market and who (geographically) just to market to.

  221. 440

    says

    My biggest struggle with marketing is promoting products and prints. My clients seem to always order the prints that seem “safe” and hate to try new ideas or go BIG with thier prints. Id love to have marketing material that showcased all the great products that I offer.

  222. 442

    Ally says

    My biggest obstacle is finding self confidence and knowing how to market myself with what I have to offer.

  223. 443

    says

    My biggest struggle marketing my business is finding low cost ways of advertising my business to my target market. Most ways of advertising either dont stand out, dont target the right clients, or are very expensive for someone starting out and trying to build up a solid business.

  224. 444

    Melanie says

    My biggest struggle is putting together all the elements that need to be in place in order to be in business!

  225. 446

    Kristie Bradley says

    What is your biggest struggle marketing your business? Or if not in business, what your biggest obstacle to getting started?

    I think my biggest struggle in getting started is pricing,marketing and time. I have been working on my business at night and in between my full time job, taking on sessions for friends to build my portfolio and TRYING to set my prices. Setting prices is a very difficult decision. Going to be working on my logo and branding the next few weeks then back to pricing!!

  226. 447

    says

    I struggle with how to gain more clients…haven’t been doing this very long so I am still feeling my way through.

  227. 453

    Karyn Collins says

    Definitely my biggest challenge is TIME. I’m constantly trying to find/make the time to build the business while working in a totally unrelated field FT and hanging with/taking care of my family. This series has been SO helpful and inspiring BTW. After reading the post on portfolio building I “booked” 4 portfolio building shoots in the next two weeks. YeeHA!!(yeah, I’m from Texas :o)…and good-bye sleep. OK, the balancing act continues .. off to pick up the kidlet from school.

  228. 454

    says

    There is such an influx of photographers in my area that it has been challenging to find a way to make myself stand out in the crowd.

  229. 456

    CJ says

    The biggest obstacle to getting started for me is finding clients. So far word of mouth is not doing it! I just have not taken the next steps of actively marketing myself, so any ways to do that will be very appreciated.

  230. 458

    Kori T. says

    Not yet started….the biggest challenge is my age. I am only 15, but I have a whole photography business in my head. But because I am only 15, I have no money to buy an SLR camera and no one takes me seriously when I have my little point-and-shoot. But when I use my school’s Nikon D60 yearbook camera, everyone considers me pro. So the biggest challenge is my age.

  231. 459

    Kim says

    Biggest obstacle is pricing myself for what I am worth and sticking to it. Seems like I am always giving in to a lesser price.

  232. 460

    Angie says

    My biggest struggle with marketing my business is knowing what resources are legit, and which ones aren’t. I would love the opportunity to win this!

  233. 463

    says

    My biggest obstacle to starting a business is money. I’m going to be graduating college soon, which means I am going to be in debt for a few years yet. I need a steady income to pay off my loans and I’m afraid I won’t make enough as a photographer to support myself.

  234. 465

    says

    My biggist struggle in marketing my business is the organization and selling of my product. I am wanting to put together welcome packets to my clients to sell my product. I have so many things in my head that I would love to present to my clients, but have a hard time getting it put together.

  235. 467

    Kerri Tindle says

    I have a huge problem with self-confidence. It’s hard to sell yourself when you don’t think you’re as good as everyone else!

  236. 469

    Emmie says

    My biggest challenge in marketing is being afraid of sounding desperate for work even though I’m not desperate. I don’t market myself bery well because of my fear.

  237. 470

    Erin says

    I am just getting started- and my biggest struggle is getting the word out there without feeling pushy.

  238. 472

    says

    I think my biggest struggle with my marketing is knowing what to do and when! I am very weak in the marketing department…most of my business is from word of mouth.

  239. 473

    says

    Marketing while still perfecting skills is complicated. With no real price idea and no branding yet its hard to market with out seeming like a shoot and burner

  240. 474

    says

    What is your biggest struggle marketing your business? Marketing to the right people (those who do not just want a CD with images for a very inexpensive price… those who value photography and will spend $1000 or more on photographs for their home)

  241. 479

    says

    I’m trying to get closer and closer to launching. I think my biggest obstacles are investment capital and differentiating myself from the other photogs in the area.

  242. 481

    Kellie spicknell says

    My biggest obstacle is knowing what to do next. I need to plan more and know my next move. I also tend to wait for work to come to me rather than go and get it.

  243. 482

    says

    Biggest getting started obstacle thus far… becoming an official business (state/federal). There’s no easy button “click here if you would like to start a sole proprietor business”. There is a lot to dig through and shuffle and figure out. Sure, the easy way would be to pay an accountant to tell me what to do, but I wanna do it myself. :)

  244. 492

    Rachel says

    Just knowing where to start, of course other then the obvious of registering the business name etc. Package prices to the skill level you have and other costs associated.

  245. 493

    says

    Biggest struggle would be… doing something I think will gain a lot of attention (ie giveaway so many wallets if you book by a certain date… etc.) and no one takes me up on the offer. So, what should I do?

  246. 500

    says

    My biggest struggle is finding the time to really market myself effectively – between my full time day job, kids, and shooting/editing, I feel like there is never enough time!

  247. 501

    Lori Smith says

    Biggest challenge is deciding where to spend the money–website, marketing materials or concentrate on education!

  248. 502

    Starr Crocker says

    Trying to get started! I am working on building my portfolio and I am still in school! Having fun though!

  249. 503

    Erica says

    I’m really still in the learning stage but I think one of the biggest obstacles will be getting the business side sorted out. This series is really helpful in that regard.

  250. 504

    says

    The biggest problem I have with marketing is getting my name out there! I can’t seem to find new and fresh ideas that are effective enough to get people talking.

  251. 505

    Sarah says

    I am finding it incredibly hard to portfolio build for family and friends for next to nothing whilst also spending a lot of money on stuff, like a new lens, monitor calibration tool, prints at the prolab to make sure my process works, building my website. I long for the day I can charge someone without feeling like a fraud.

  252. 506

    says

    My biggest struggle is getting my name out there with a niche photography business. I photograph dogs and I have to start-up on NO MONEY. However, I think I am finding great resources and on my way to tackling this issue – all I need now is some FREE marketing stuff! :) I am a fan on your FB page as Elizabeth Beattie and I follow you on twitter under Beattie_Studios.

  253. 507

    wendy says

    not in business yet, but the biggest hurdle is not being good enough! need to get more practice before i can start charging!

  254. 509

    Martina Frankovits says

    My biggest struggle with starting my business-Having the faith in myself that it will work, and be successful!

  255. 512

    says

    My biggest obstacle is all the legal and accounting stuff! I hate to pay all the fees to start a busienss when I’m not entirely sure being in business is right for me…at the same time, I don’t want to take money from people if I’m not legal! Agh!

  256. 515

    says

    I’m not in business yet but my biggest challenge at the moment is managing my time. There just aren’t enough hours in the day to get my photography to the next level.

  257. 516

    says

    There have been many challenges in getting started–but I think the biggest one for me personally has simply been CHARGING PEOPLE! (Especially friends). I thought I needed to build a great portfolio before I started taking money for my images, but I have realized that I have enough to go by and people want to and are willing to pay. Getting past the “charging friends” has been my biggest personal hurdle–other than that, getting great opportunities to display my talent have been something I have had to really work for.

  258. 517

    Julie Vella says

    My biggest hurdle is having the confidence to market myself as a photographer, sometimes I still feel like a fraud!

  259. 518

    Christie G. says

    Definitely confidence! I don’t see the worth in my own work, which is a daily struggle for me.

  260. 519

    says

    biggest obstacle for me is new clients, I have friends and family that want to use me but capturing new clients has been tough.

  261. 520

    says

    I am pretty new so word of mouth has been my only marketing tool. Now that I feel I’m ready to branch out a little I have no idea where to start with Marketing my self.

    Thanks so much for all you guys do. Your blog is awesome.

  262. 521

    says

    My biggest obstacle is how to make people realize that they need professional photos and to make them willing to pay accordingly. How to convey value in all the products offered.

  263. 523

    says

    My biggest marketing problem is in designing the pieces I want to use for mailings, advertisement, brochures, etc.
    Angie’s Marketing Pack looks like just what I need and I LOVE anything that is put out by Design Aglow!
    This series has been wonderful.

  264. 524

    says

    I am already a facebook fan, follower on twitter AND have had you listed on my blog for some time now. I love to spread the word about MCP because it is such a valuable source for photographers.
    Thanks, Jodi.

  265. 526

    Michelle Hockman says

    I am in the progress of becoming a real business. My biggest struggle is how to price and marketing – oh and website design / advice.

  266. 529

    Ann says

    I guess my biggest struggle is that I am so busy with photo sessions and editing that I honestly don’t have time to create these types of marketing tools myself (not that I totally couldn’t use them!!!). I haven’t even had time to create an offical website…now that’s pretty bad:) Should have done all of this in the beginning.

  267. 534

    says

    my biggest obstacle to getting started is time and narrowing down all of my ideas that i’d love to do once i get started!

  268. 535

    says

    My biggest hurdle in marketing is determining how best to reach my audience. Very few of my clients seem to be as engaged in social networking as other people’s – fully half last year aren’t on facebook, twitter etc.

  269. 536

    says

    my biggest obstacle in getting started and really marketing myself, is lacking confidence. I know that I can do it, and everyone keeps telling my I can, and my photos will sell themselves, but somehow that little voice in the back of my head keeps drowning out everything else and it holds me back. I will over come this!!!

    this is such a great contest and a great opportunity. thanks for the chance to enter!

  270. 538

    says

    I think my biggest struggle is not knowing how to get my name out there. I have just now felt confidant in my work enough to start really networking. But honestly, it’s because of people like Jodi, Rachel Durik and I heart Faces that have taught me more in the last year than I’ve learned in the 6 I’ve been doing this.

  271. 539

    says

    I’m having a really hard time coming up with pricing…should I do a sitting fee and a la carte print prices? Pacakages? And how do I work senior reps into the equation? There are so many different roads to take with pricing. Also, how do you determine print prices? Is it a percentage or just some random number?

  272. 540

    Nancy says

    My biggest obstacle is feeling good about my price list and leaving it alone. I always wonder what the client thinks – is it too high? Too low? I have researched it a lot so I would love to just accept it, and change it if necessary when the time comes!

  273. 543

    says

    I’ve been told that word of mouth is great marketing… and it is! I get most of my new clients that way. But it can be so s-l-o-w! Such a long time between doing shoot for client x and then hearing from client x’s friend. I need to find a way to create a bit more hype and buzz about my work…. I also need to find a way into my target market group (people who value photography and are prepared to invest properly in it.)

  274. 548

    says

    Biggest struggle? For me it’s that I’ve finally figured out who I am and now I’m trying to brand myself the way I should but I have no idea how to design my products (cards, labels, etc) to match my brand and style. Need some desperate help in that department.

  275. 552

    says

    My biggest struggle in not being able to do photography full time is MONEY! I would LOVE to have my own studio and do photojournalism, but I’ve got to put some food on the table and find a way to buy stuff for a studio!

  276. 557

    says

    My biggest struggle right now is developing a logo, so that I can really get my branding together and consistent TO market myself better.

  277. 560

    says

    Wow, I would have to say getting my name out there is hard and also knowing how to price. I’m starting out and it’s tough to know if I’m going in the right direction and making the right decisions. It’s hard finding a balance to everything as well.

  278. 562

    Lisa says

    My biggest obstacle to getting started is fear – especially fear that I’ll end up being sued by someone which would have a huge financial impact. That’s what scares me most about contemplating going into business.

    Thanks for this series – such thought-provoking questions!

  279. 565

    Kristin Stallings says

    My biggest challenge is figuring out my style instead of comparing my work to others.

  280. 567

    Veronica Hudley says

    I am just getting started and my biggest obstacle is having the confidence in photography people. I’m a very shy person and I can take hundreds of pictures of my family, but actually photographing friends, or strangers, I’m still trying to build confidence in.

  281. 568

    Sarah Latham says

    My biggest hurdle into starting is knowing when you are good enough, ˆdont want to be the just cause i have a camera im a photographer fly by night. I want to last.

  282. 571

    says

    I’d say my biggest struggle is marketing myself–both to people I know and people I don’t know. I’m not super confident or out-going, so I’ve got to learn to just loosen up and start mentioning what I do to people. That and finding the time to market myself…I know work of mouth is the best marketing,but I’ve got to work on getting a blog and facebook business page–I have heard those two things really help with marketing.

  283. 573

    says

    My biggest struggle is that I read and research. Read and research some more. Then finally I will apply. I feel that it’s good to do the research but I need to DO more.

  284. 579

    says

    My biggest obstacle is that I know nothing about marketing. I use my blog, and that´s it. I don´t have a clue how to get myselv out there, other than hoping people talk and reccomend me as a pohotgrapher.

  285. 582

    says

    biggest obstacle to getting started is financial problems and getting a degree. I was a art student attending art school in San Diego, California. But had to withdraw because i couldn’t afford pay for my schooling. Also I was unemployed because no jobs would not want me to work little hours because of the mass amount of hours i put into school.

  286. 583

    says

    ALL marketing is tough for me, but I’d say I have an especially hard time at talking myself up. I need an elevator pitch.

  287. 587

    says

    My biggest marketing problem is reaching my target market, I live in a large metro area and there are not a lot of small shops and people are very spread out. Its hard to reach people and get my name out there. Also SEO is a big problem.

  288. 588

    says

    My biggest challenge is self-confidence. I know that most of my business will come from word of mouth and how I project myself, but I’m naturally shy and still new to the professional world and a worrier. I need to believe in myself more so that others will believe in me as well.

  289. 589

    Michelle says

    Taking pictures for years, everyone says you need to start a business but no one wants to pay, they still consider you an amature.

  290. 590

    Morgan Mosiman says

    Learning what form of marketing will be the most effective in reaching my target market.

  291. 591

    Emily Troutman says

    Pulling it all together to get started is tough – going from just a free blog to a professional blogsite is taking me forever – I feel like that will be a major step when I can launch it!

  292. 593

    says

    I moved to a new town a year ago where I knew nobody and because of my other ‘real’ job in which I have to travel a lot, this fact didn’t change a lot yet. But I tried to launch my photography business at the beginning of this year – but how without knowing anyone here despite my neighbors?
    I would love to have the opportunity to use the marketing pack to get a new start after I got so de-motivated right now.

  293. 594

    Tracey says

    My biggest obstacle is taking the plunge. I am great at helping everyone else – but myself, forget about it.

  294. 596

    Terri Q says

    I’m about 5 months into my 2-year education and preparation plan. From my current perspective it seems EVERYTHING is a huge obstacle – learning all the technical aspects of digital photography, learning my own shooting style, knowing what gear I need, what props I need, how to best use Photoshop, etc. But knowing myself, the most daunting obstacle is marketing myself.

  295. 597

    says

    I’m just starting out. It’s overwhelming getting everything organized in terms of the business side. I had planned on spending a lot more time being creative, studying, and building my confidence. The marketing, business documents, pricing has had to come quickly (I’m not complaining in the least!) but I could sure use some help :) Putting together pricing packages is a struggle.

  296. 600

    HeatherS says

    My biggest challenge is that right around the time I started my photography business my husband lost his job. He is the main breadwinner, so that meant no more buying tools and sets to help me. Since I am in the very early stages it hurts to not be able to invest in extra things that would really help my business prosper.

  297. 602

    says

    My biggest struggle is having confidence in my own abilities. I’m still a beginner and do mostly food photography. I want to branch out and try new things but I’m not sure that I have the talent for it :-)

  298. 603

    says

    My biggest struggle with marketing my business is staying consistent. I get a great idea and start marketing in that direction, then something else catches my eye and I change my path. I need something that can help me focus and stay focused to get the job done. Great giveaway, Jodi! Thanks!

  299. 604

    says

    My biggest obstacle getting started with my business is having the money to start off as professional as possible. I don’t want to “play” at this. I don’t want to look like I am new at this.

  300. 606

    says

    My biggest obstacle in marketing myself is I still don’t know what my specialty is…and I don’t really know if I *want* to specialize in something. While I realize I can’t be awesome in everything, I live in such a small community, if I attempted to focus on only one category, I would probably only have one or two customers a year. Since I don’t have a target client, I really don’t ‘target’ anyone. Resulting in NO customers!!!

  301. 607

    says

    My biggest problem is trying to reach a good client base. I want to do mainly high school seniors and the schools make it really hard to reach these kids. Traditional advertising is so expensive and when you are just starting that is a huge obstical. I have a strong fundamental base just need that extra help to get over this bump in the road.

  302. 608

    says

    Well to be quite honest my biggest obstical is me. I am not quite sure yet how I want to represent myself. Im not sure if I charge enough. I what to be succesful at this. I love people and I love when they love what they get. I just want to move beyond word of mouth… A place where people can find me. I have gotten beyond the jitters and just want to build up what I have done so far.

  303. 609

    says

    I’m in my first year of business, and my biggest challenges include getting my name out there through word of mouth and client referrals. Even though I have a client referral program, I haven’t yet seen any new clients come through the door as a result. I have great relationships with my current clients that have resulted in multiple sessions, but I’m struggling to get new clients beyond my current circle of Moms Club clients. I also know that Facebook would be a great marketing tool, but I’ve procrastinated on getting up my business page up.

  304. 612

    says

    One of my biggest struggles is making that transition from portfolio building to charging with friends and family. So tough! This is a great series and has been helpful.

  305. 613

    Vanessa Segars says

    What is your biggest struggle marketing your business? It’s definitely time!! I just need the time to gather everything I need, create a marketing plan and materials, and then move forward from a solid foundation. Right now, though I operate functionally, I’m not as efficient as I can be.

  306. 614

    Amandco says

    My biggest struggle is getting people out there to notice my work and to pick ME!!! I want to be their FIRST choice when it comes to their photography needs.

  307. 618

    says

    The sheer amount of options. The task is daunting, especially when you make mistakes and invest precious little funding in items that don’t work, don’t matter, sit wasting away on the shelf, etc. It’s really hard to figure out what materials to invest in at the different points of business growth.

    And I can’t figure out how to get my dang website to work. I am stuck on my wordpress platform, which is relatively customized but not really. It stinks!

  308. 619

    Kris says

    The biggest challenge in getting started is figuring out what to say on the different items that would be needed.

  309. 620

    says

    The biggest struggle I face in marketing is having the money to do it right. I am guilty of taking shortcuts, and it shows.
    My biggest obstacle getting started was, again, money. It takes money to make money, so building my business has been very slow for me.

  310. 621

    Courtney says

    My biggest obstacle getting started – FEAR – for sure! It’s so hard to put myself out there, because what if people hate it, what if I can’t get clients, what if, what if…

  311. 623

    says

    The hardest part is knowing how/where to start for me! I have a marketing card, business card, web & facebook page, but getting people to the pages and where to hand the cards out is an unknown for me.

  312. 624

    Sharon says

    I don’t have a business yet. I still think I need to raise my skill level before I’m ready to start charging for my services.

    Thank you so much for posting this series! It’s been incredibly inspiring and enlightening.

  313. 625

    says

    My biggest marketing challenge is that I need professional looking materials. It’s sooo hard to design them myself – I’m just not a designer and it shows.

  314. 630

    says

    My biggest obstacle in getting started is ME! I’m so nervous to put myself out there for my first practice/PBing shoots. Scares me to death!

  315. 632

    Diane B says

    My biggest struggle in getting started is just that – getting started! I am lost. I feel like I need some one to sit me down with a step-by-step plan that I can just check off – like a list – Number One – check, Number Two, check, etc. I have no idea what to charge for my services, what printing service to use, etc. Like I said – completely and utterly lost.