Perhaps you’ve heard about workflows, but don’t exactly understand how they can better your business. I totally get it! You’re probably working so deeply in the day-to-day of your business that it’s hard to come up for air amidst sending contracts and figuring out how to collect payments from your clients. But what if I told you that all of that could be alleviated with a workflow?
Well, guess what? You’re in luck!
Why You Should Implement a Workflow
- A workflow saves time. Automation is a beautiful thing. Imagine going through ONCE to create a beautiful client experience through your workflow. Then after that, you know that you won’t have to hit send every time a proposal/contract/invoice/email has to go out. This is a huge time saver, that now allows you to focus on the actual client and/or growing your business!
- A workflow gives you a professional presence. Imagine you are the client and you’re trying to decide between two photographers. You immediately receive a branded email upon inquiring with one; the other you had to wait a few days to receive a response, and when you finally received said response, it wasn’t branded and there were typos. Despite this, you still lined up calls with both, but then you received a proposal from both. One was branded and neat. The other came as an email that was typed up and seemed inconsistent. Which photographer would you go with? Probably the one that seems like she has her act together and has taken the time to set up that workflow that does the hard work for her! This leads me to the next point…
- A workflow instills confidence in your client because they’re seamlessly led through your booking, shooting, and image delivering processes. When choosing an engagement and wedding photographer, clients want to feel confident in the person they select to document their love story. A well-thought out workflow will tell the client what to expect next in the process (and those emails or other correspondence will be sent out automatically!!). When they are consistently met with branded emails that tell them what to expect, they feel secure in you and their decision.
- A workflow will alleviate the worry that you’re overlooking something for your clients. When you’re recreating the experience for each individual client without any consistency or workflow, you open yourself up to making mistakes or skipping steps. The amount of anxiety this gives you is not worth it! Also, it’s not fair to your clients, which brings me to my final point.
- A workflow will give a consistent client experience to all of your clients! Each and every one of your clients deserves to get your best. An easy way to give them that is to implement a workflow! So despite whether you’re sick, out of town, or whatever–they still get supported throughout their experience with you!
But I Want a Custom Experience for My Clients…
I hear you–a workflow, on the surface, can seem impersonal because each of your clients are receiving the same emails. But hear me out–how many times do you find yourself writing and re-writing the same thing over and over again? You’re saying the same things (perhaps with slight variations) repeatedly, so you may as well automate that!
Also, there are still opportunities to customize the client experience within the workflow. Maybe you send customized proposals. Or maybe you send gifts throughout their client experience. Those are touch points where you can really individualize the experience so it is one-of-a-kind!
Where Do I Start?
If you’re sold on the idea that you need a workflow, but don’t know where to start–there’s a blog post for that! This blog post will walk you through all the questions that you should answer as you’re piecing together your workflow, and therefore, your client experience.
Alright, I’m Ready to Execute…
Now, in order to execute the workflow you just drafted, you’ll need a Client Relationship Manager (CRM). A CRM is not a person; instead, it’s an online software that you use to keep track of all the things: email templates, proposals, pricing guides, contracts, invoices, sessions, phone consultations. There are a few main CRMs that are typically used by those in the creative and/or wedding industries: Honeybook, Dubsado, and 17Hats. None of these are affiliate links…I just truly want you to save yourself a ton of time and feel confident in your workflow and, ultimately, your business!If you want to learn more about what a CRM does, this blog post is helpful!
Creating a workflow takes a lot of legwork. If you’re looking to expedite the process, this Workflow Pillar in The Photography Framework is the outline of my own workflow that I use with my wedding clients. It can be used as is or can be customized to fit your individual business!
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