4 programs I use everyday
There are so many aspects of being a wedding photographer besides just shooting pictures. There's a lot of behind the scenes work that involves editing, file management, marketing, and managing client relationships. Here are 4 programs that I use everyday.
After the wedding is shot, the real work of editing begins! Adobe Lightroom allows you to import all of your pictures, sort them, edit in batches, and retouch. Although I do know how to use Photoshop, Lightroom is the better program for batch editing. Photoshop is meant to create complex photo compositions with layers. Since my style of photography is more natural, I have no need for Photoshop. With sorting through over 2,000 pictures per wedding, I couldn't imagine opening every image in Photoshop!
Dubsado is a Customer Relationship Management software. This program allows me to easily invoice clients, send contracts, track expenses, schedule sessions, and automate emails. This has helped so much as I've began booking more jobs. It's a central location for everything to be organized. I love how this program is integrated with my website and Google calendar. For example, when someone fills out the contact form on my website, a lead is created in Dubsado. If the person is inquiring about wedding services, Dubsado will automatically send them my wedding pricing guide. If the person decides to book the date, I can send the the contract through Dubsado, they can pay their deposit online through Dubsado, and then the job is automatically added to my Google calendar. This saves sooo much time and makes the client relationship aspect of business easy.
I use Squarespace for my website/blog. I find this platform to be user friendly, design friendly, and still powerful enough to control some aspects of SEO. I created and maintain my website myself, so I need a content management system that is relatively simple. I love that Squarespace sites look well designed from the beginning. Even though Squarespace has an emphasis on good design and ease of use, it still has important features such as email list capture and some analytics.
I use CloudSpot to deliver client galleries online. I love CloudSpot because it uses my branding and doesn't even look like I'm send the photos through a third party. CloudSpot integrates with Lightroom so as soon as I'm finished editing, I can upload the images directly to CloudSpot without exporting to my computer first. CloudSpot has beautiful online galleries and easily allows my clients to download their images. I can control the resolution of the files and send a print release with the gallery. My clients can even order prints directly from their online gallery! CloudSpot offers a special deal for Dubsado users that allows me to get unlimited storage for a lower price than any other program.
Other programs that I use frequently are Adobe InDesign for print designs, Plann on the iphone for Instagram scheduling, and MailChimp for sending out my weekly email list.