When starting a new business, it can be easy to look at booking rates and numbers and quickly sell yourself short.
I have the tendency to compare myself to other people during their “busy season.”
Busy season is what we term the season where we are the busiest with our business. That doesn’t always mean bookings though.
Right now, I actually have four different busy seasons.
1. Spring Sessions (April-May) This is when I photograph most of my senior sessions, prom, some portrait sessions, and a few headshot sessions for actors prepping for their next auditions. I typically have multiple sessions per week, which means I get to photograph their session, edit pictures, create galleries, write blog posts, make contracts, and other business/client management work. On top of that, April-May is the busiest time in my school schedule (AKA exam season) where I have papers due, finals to study for, presentations to prepare, etc. This is by far my BUSIEST season.
2. Fall/Christmas Season (November-December) This season is big for family portrait sessions! There’s just something about colorful, fall leaves and the Christmas season that encourage families come together to capture precious memories (which I LOVE)! Of course, this is also exam season for the fall semester.
3. Summer Refresh (May-August) During the summer, when I’m not shooting as much, I refresh all of my business materials. I rewrite sample contracts to match my current policies, redesign pricing guides and session prep guides to make sure my clients are always getting the best and most current information and tips for sessions, and my entire website gets completely remodeled or at least a major touchup.
4. School Season (September-April) This actually has very little to do with my business and more of why my summer is a busy season. I work on my business materials during the summer to save myself time during the school year. Sessions on top of homework and class keeps me reasonably busy, so I try to make sure to time manage by season too, in order to not overwhelm myself when I’m in school. The last thing anyone needs is to have to redo their contract and session prep guide for an upcoming session on the same night they gave to write a 10-page paper.
So, maybe your busy season looks nothing like mine... that’s okay! Your busy season is probably different from a lot of people’s. We’re all going through different seasons of life, experiencing different life events, etc. We should all learn to give ourselves a break every now and then though. Take time to breathe and remind yourself that’s it’s okay if our schedule doesn’t look the same as someone else’s.
See you soon,
Caitlin S. Cornett