This is a proven, professional system based on the real world, not hyped up internet BS.
(And yes, I will prove it works… just keep scrolling down)
Is this your story?
As a budding photographer you decide that it would be amazing to make photographs for a living. You aren’t really sure what that means exactly, but it sounds like something that would be fun. So you invest in a lot of gear, and lights, and stands, and workshops and online tutorials and on and on you go.
You think maybe wedding photography… and then you do one. Yikes.
You think maybe kids and families are the ticket… until you do a few of them and realize that working in the consumer world just ain’t gonna float your boat. There’s too much competition from photographers who don’t know their own worth, working with clients who don’t value the work anyway.
So you think… hey, maybe commercial work!
So off you go shooting products and people and architecture for your portfolio. You don’t really know why, but that is what “commercial” photographers seem to do. Nights shooting still life, weekends shooting buildings… all the time wondering if this work is going to pay off?
And of course… it doesn’t. No clients call you even with your shiny 5 color business card and pictures of soap in your book.
And you simply don’t know why.
“Hey, I got a website, and a Facebook, and a Twitter so why are there no gigs,” you scream when no one is around. (OK – occasionally when there are others around).
Then it happens… someone asks you a simple question… “Who are your potential clients?” Harmless, quite innocuous for a question actually. And the stammering, shuffling and rapid eye rolling starts. You cannot answer that question with anymore than “Uhhh… commercial people”.
And then comes the inevitable…
Disappointment turns to bitterness and you find yourself on a “pity forum” dishing on how hard the business is, and now no one cares about great photography anymore. And soon “no one can make any money in this business…” becomes your battle cry of defeat.
You know what happens when you fill your head with the idea that no one could possibly be successful don’t you? Yeah, that’s right – your subconscious makes damn sure YOU are not going to be successful too. Self fulfilling prophecy I believe they call it.
I say, ‘garbage in – garbage out”.
The bitterness soon turns to full on anger and the gear goes up for sale faster than you can say “Sell my Canons on Craigslist, baby”.
“I gave it my all, but there is no business out there anymore… no one is hiring anyone… moms and iPhones…”
Actually no, that is not it at all.
The problem is that you didn’t know how to build a solid portfolio of work that buyers want to see, and even if the portfolio had been created, you didn’t know anyone who wanted to buy the work. And even if you stumbled across a potential buyer, you didn’t know how to bid, produce, deliver and bill the gig… let alone stay in touch with the client to get more work.
You were defeated before you really, REALLY, began.
What you needed was a system to help build a strong portfolio, find clients who want to buy the work, and keep them coming back for more.
How can a “system” help you find, and keep, clients? Here’s how;
It keeps you focused on what’s important
Without a system, we find ourselves trying this for a while then that… and nothing seems to work because there is no goal in mind, no way to ascertain if what we are doing is actually making a difference. There simply is no measurement tool to give us the feedback we need. A system makes the effort we put out measurable, and the results tangible.
It helps you make smart decisions
When we are flailing around, going from one ‘marketing strategy’ to another, we tend to make decisions that are without any thought or research. Since there is no roadmap, we don’t know where we are on the journey, and we make stupid, costly decisions that force us to backpedal – or worse – surrender to the negativity.
A system makes what you are doing “real”
You know what, by when, and why something must be done. You watch the results of the system begin to grow in ways that are controllable. A system lets the photographer free up the creative time, because the business time becomes simply part of the day. You get more done, and reach more potential clients when you are working a solid system.
THE FOUR THINGS YOU MUST DO TO BE SUCCESSFUL IN COMMERCIAL PHOTOGRAPHY
HAVE A KILLER PORTFOLIO
A “body of work” that will show your work off as well as your vision. A great portfolio that is tightly edited, and geared for the clients you want to attract. The saying “show what you want to shoot” is 100% correct. Creating a powerful portfolio allows clients to choose you with confidence.
UNDERSTAND AND RESEARCH VERTICALS
A vertical is an industry or type of business that uses the kind of work that you do. Discovering those verticals can make all the difference when you begin to shoot specifically for your portfolio. When you have created a vertical list with eight or more distinct areas, you are ready to begin to find the specific companies you should be working with.
GET PERSONAL AND FIND CLIENTS
When you have a well researched vertical list, you can now look for those companies within the vertical that actually hire commercial photographers to do the types of photographs you do. We go from an overview of who would hire us (verticals) to specifically who would hire us. This is powerful knowledge that we will use to get the jobs we want.
WORK SMART & STAY IN TOUCH
They say it takes more effort to land a client than to keep a client and that is really true. Once we understand the nature of working with commercial clients, and we have developed a professional relationship with them, we now have to stay top-of-mind for further work. Being professional in all aspects of the relationship is the best way to keep a client coming back for more.
THESE ARE THE AREAS THIS SYSTEM FOCUSES ON – AND IT GETS RESULTS!
There are no secrets, no overnight successes, no shortcuts, and no easy buttons. Those are lies coveted by fools and served up by snake oil salesmen.
The “Secret” Myth
Building a commercial photography business is not some alchemy shrouded in the mists of legends. No secret handshakes, no special recipes, no hard to find ingredients. It is a real, honestly challenging path that has a few twists and turns, but for the most part is quite well marked.
The “Overnight Success” Myth
Yeah, we hear of them occasionally. They guy or gal who has a gazillion followers on their Instagram getting called out of the blue for a great big job for a major company. You noticed the part where they had a gazillion followers? Overnight? Hardly. This business takes time and constant effort. Gary V clears this myth up here.
The “Shortcut” Myth
A favorite for the internet “rockstars” selling actions, and workshops, and tutorials. They tell us about how, only working a few hours a week, we can make a “six figure” income from photography. They have the “shortcut” so it will be painless for you. That is pure, unmitigated crappola. BS. There are NO shortcuts. Stop looking for them.
The “Easy Button” Myth
Similar to the shortcut myth, the easy button depends on the desire of the photographer to not expend much energy in pursuing their goals. The modestly motivated individual will certainly want an easy way to do something. Learning and working is soooo hard, and time consuming. If you are looking for an easy button, click here.
I just want to be clear that this mini course is not a quick fix, or some sort of impossible promise. It will take time and effort. It will require you to dig deep to find your level of commitment, and then to take action.
Nothing is as powerful as those two words. Taking action on your portfolio, taking action on acquiring your prospects, taking action on contacting your prospects, and taking action on all of the follow through that is needed. This is a proven strategy, with real implementation goals for you to complete, and build on.
Ready to take action and get the training? Sign up here.
Without the teaching and direction of Don Giannatti I would be lost and not a successful commercial photographer today. Lots more to learn and grow into, but I am doing it and loving life.Eric Muetterties
Here are a few more students who would like to weigh in...
“Don shares his wealth of knowledge and encourages me to do my best work as I learn the secrets of Commercial Photography. He has opened up a whole new world for me as I do the work!” — Terrill Bodner
“For me, Don is a great inspiration, when he gives feedback on images he always gives it from the level the photographer is at. The critique is always constructive and is given to build up and make the photographer better. The “real life assignments” are built to push you to the next level.” — Tomas Jansson
“Don’s hands on approach to teaching the business of photography has been essential to my success. His approach is broken down into logical, attainable steps that let you quickly cut through the noise and lock on to your final goal. Finding my voice, niche and direction in an over crowded market like New York City seemed an insurmountable task; with Don’s guidance – both in classes and throughout the years beyond – I have built a successful photography business that only continues to grow.” — Rob Davidson
“There are a lot of great teachers in photography out there and I took a lot of online workshops and video courses. Great stuff, really! But in rare cases you’ll find an exceptional teacher and personality (which goes hand in hand, I think). A teacher who not only teaches you how to tweak your lighting. A teacher who has such a broad and deep understanding of photography not only as a technical craft, but also as an art and last but not least as a business. A real master I would say. Don Giannatti is one of these masters. Having him as a teacher was and still is a game changer for me. His teaching style is well structured, down-to-earth, applicable and appreciative. He’s 100% committed to his students.” — Thomas Pöhler
“One can’t make a living as a photographer for 40 years and NOT know how the industry works. Don distills that lifetime of experience into easy to digest information THAT MAKES SENSE! You still have to walk the walk, and it may not be easy, but his building block approach helps you see the path on which to trod and helps nullify some of the self-imposed obstacles we as creative folks tend to…well, create. If you don’t have your “next steps” laid out when you finish this course, then you weren’t paying attention.” — Bob Knill
“Don Giannatti leads his students through the creative and business side of photography in a way that makes you understand what a client will actually expected of you as a commercial photographer. Using real world photo assignments, live, online critiques and realistic “no BS” business learning modules, I have a much clearer insight into what I need to focus on so I can be successful as a commercial photographer.” — Tammy Bogestrand
“Don’s teachings have made it possible for me to make a good living as a full time commercial photographer. Using a basic approach of doing the work, Don teaches the steps. Doing the work is up to you!” — Catherine Vibert
“It seems so simple when Don Giannatti talks about reflective light, bending it to my desired result is becoming second nature through his instruction. Don is bringing a whole new level of clarity to what I have learned to see and in the work I have been creating.” — Tonja Peterson-Wendt
“Don is a natural-born mentor — it’s in his DNA. His style is persistently positive, honest & fair, and the value of critique sessions with him cannot be overstated. Don teaches real-world methods of successful commercial photography, from image making to finding and keeping clients. If you want to get better at everything you need to know to be a successful commercial photographer, look no further: you’ve found the right teacher.” — Bret Doss
“Taking the courses I have with Don over the past 5 years has taken so much of the mystery out of what I see in other online courses and videos. Don gives you the opportunity to learn what it’s like to have real world assignments thrown at you and how to tackle it when it happens. I fully stand behind any and all courses he crafts together.” — Tucker Joenz
“It has been a great experience to work with Don Giannatti, he is teaching photography and the business of photography from the ground up until one achieves the highest level possible. His style of teaching is such that every student feels special attention is given to him or her and group activities go on well past the actual workshop term. Don, truly gives of himself, he loves teaching and you can feel it, my experience with his workshop can only be described as superior to any other!” — Alfred Kypta
“Don is great. He doesn’t bullshit, has a heart and even his jokes are decent! Every minute that I have talked with him, read his writings, or listened to anything he has to say, has been very much worth my time. He is unlike “the majority” and sets the bar quite high for photography educators. ” — Jessica Edler
“Don teaches photography in a straight forward, no hype approach. These are manageable steps that, if you work, will bring you much success.” — Mike Moore
“In the last year Don’s courses have been exactly what I needed to finally make the jump to becoming a full time, professional photographer. His style of teaching is very positive and keeps pushing me to get better. He’s extremely knowledgable about all aspects of photography. I can’t begin to explain how much I’ve learned and look forward to much more.” — Bryan Miller
“Don’s style of teaching photography business is straight forward, to the point and realistic. There are no gimmicks: just honest, solid information, that leads to step-by-step evolution of real skills and progression on every level of the photography business.” — Anna Gunn
“I’ve been working with Don for almost 4 years – his advice and guidance is solid gold and has taken my photography to places I’ve never expected. Don doesn’t teach tricks. He teaches real-world techniques that work if you follow through and do the work.” — Paula Puffer
“Don Giannatti’s method of teaching photography helps you to see and develop your own style of photography by exposing you to many different techniques of experienced Masters of Photography (including himself). It is rewarding as Don guides you to Imitate, Assimilate, Innovate.” — Marjorie Decker
“Before I began receiving instruction from Don on how to approach my commercial photography work, I was virtually in the dark. I thought erroneously, “If I build it, they will come.” Just as I seized control of my creative process years ago by learning to get my camera off of auto and into manual, Don is teaching me how to seize control of my business process by becoming proactive in knowing my own best work, my target market, how to market to that target, and smartly going about making that happen. It has made a tremendous difference in the amount of work I’m getting.” — Mike Chapman
“Don teaches in a very honest, informative and no bs way which step by step leads you closer to finding commercial clients. I have never experienced a better teacher and his methods really works.” — Anders Eriksson
“Don offers easy to understand, actionable steps you can implement with resources available to you right now. This works without having to wade through tons of fluff, and my photography business continues to grow because of it.” — James Eisele
There is no substitution for knowledgeable and focused training, using real world assignments, taught by a master in his field. Don teaches you how to produce high quality work at your own pace, and has the ability to treat everyone like a respected professional, while being able to point out where work could be stronger. My only regret is that I didn’t take his courses earlier! — Sarita Rampersand
“Don’s style of teaching starts with a firm foundation and builds a structure of learning that is solid and vast. His effective critiques and no-nonsense, real world business savvy is interlaced with generosity and good humor. It is my good fortune to be on the receiving end of his guidance and expertise.” — Carol Liscovitz
“Don has a way of teaching that makes you feel like you are on his team, he is your coach you are a part of something big. As your cheerleader and mentor you want him to be proud of you. You really strive to do all the work knowing in the end there is a big reward. The reward is called being able to fully function in your market as a professional.” — Cathy Nance
“Don offers a genuine, direct, proven plan of action to those who are willing to take the necessary steps to reach their goals. This is invaluable real world business information that you won’t find anywhere else.” — Em Thomas
“There are teachers and then there is Don Giannatti. In the short time I’ve been on the P52 course not only has my technique and creativity flourished, I also have a clear path to follow to turn my photography into a viable business. Don tells it as it is: there is no magic bullet, but what there is is a time tested method that he’s devised from a 40 year career of actually doing it. I’m continually amazed at his energy, his patience and his passion for turning talent into something more tangible, that can be relied upon to deliver the goods under pressure when it matters most. Don is truly more than just a teacher, he is a phenomenal educator, a mentor and when needed, that cool voice in the back of your head that asks you if that is really the best you can do which kicks you to take the hundredth shot in order to get it right, or make the extra effort to contact the thousandth potential client.” — Alex Baker
“Don brings a no non-sense approach to his teaching that is refreshing and revitalizing. No matter your level and knowledge his photography teaching and business mentoring will yield the results you want at the speed you desire. Don always exceeds the effort you put into it. Now it’s up to you to match it!” — Bryan Lawler
“Expect no hype, no big words, no fast track no babysitting. Instead, count on blood, tears and hard work. But boy,oh boy, how this is going to pay off later. Trust me, I know as it does for me. Don has changed my life back in 2010, and I am proud to be a photographer, working photographer.” — Maciej Blaszczuk
“Don teaches solid no bs methods that are adaptable to many situations and places. Even on the other side of the world.” — Jorge Rodriguez
“Donald Giannatti’s teachings have helped me understand what it takes to run a photography business. I find Don’s approach challenges me to think about the whole process which has been instrumental in transforming my passion for photography. The value and meaning of my work has changed for the better. Don has helped me to understand exactly what I enjoy about making images and enabled me to actually achieve it. With the knowledge Don has shared, I feel confident that I could go on to be a successful commercial photographer, safe in the knowledge that I am prepared for the many aspects of running such a business.Furthermore, the group of photographers Don has gathered as students form an invaluable support network, spanning the globe. They provide a wealth of information and freely share their real-life business experiences and knowledge. Joining this group has fuelled and supported my passion and I am well on the path to recognising the nuances that make one image stand out amongst others, and that’s exciting.” — John McAllister
“I love Don’s no nonsense style of teaching. The real life scenarios in his class will take you out of your comfort zone, teach you and prepare your way to success. Thanks Don for conveying your wealth of knowledge to us.” — Cotita Solaines
“Don’s mentoring and coaching takes his 40 years of experience as a working commercial photographer and creative director and puts you on the path to your own commercial career. He gives you the tools you need, it’s up to you to use them.” — Craig Ferguson
WHO IS THIS COURSE FOR?
This course is for you if;
You are a photographer currently struggling to find commercial clients.
You are a confused about what your portfolio should look like.
You want to move your current consumer business toward more commercial clients.
You are tired of spinning your wheels and seemingly starting from zero with each job you get.
You want a proven, structured method that makes sense and provides a roadmap for getting it done.
This course may not be for you if;
You are not committed to doing the work. Be honest with yourself on this one.
You want to get more wedding, portrait, family, and maternity shoots. (Not the right course for you)
You are convinced that you know what is wrong with your business and don’t need any help.
You are looking for a quick-fix or immediate solution to a short term crisis.
You are not really sure if commercial photography is what you want to do.
A FEW OF THE WONDERFUL PHOTOGRAPHERS I HAVE WORKED WITH:
St. Augustine, FL
Bay Area, CA
New York City, NY
Bay Area, CA
Santa Cruz, CA
Jorge Rodriguez Santos
San Diego, CA
Grey Houston Gibbs
New York City, NY
SJ Collins Photography
Kyle David Jones
WHAT YOU WILL LEARN FROM THIS COURSE:
CREATING AN IMPACTFUL PORTFOLIO
THE POWER OF A DEEP EDIT
DISCOVER YOUR ‘EXCELLENT’ IMAGES
SHOOTING FOR THE MARKET YOU SERVE
THE POWER OF THE PERSONAL PROJECT
THE MEANING OF “BODY OF WORK”
METHODS FOR STAYING RELEVANT
HOW TO RESEARCH YOUR LOCAL CLIENT BASE
UNDERSTANDING YOUR “VERTICALS”
BUILDING A POWERFUL VERTICALS LIST
EXPLORING SECONDARY VERTICALS
HOW MANY VERTICALS YOU NEED TO BE SUCCESSFUL
EXPANDING: REGIONAL & NATIONAL CLIENT VERTICALS
WHERE TO START WITH LOCAL VERTICALS
FINDING CLIENTS WITHIN THE VERTICALS
BUILD A TARGETED, FOCUSED LIST OF PROSPECTS
USING SOCIAL MEDIA FOR RESEARCH
CONTACTING THE POTENTIAL CLIENT
ESTABLISHING A PROFESSIONAL RELATIONSHIP
SHOWING THE WORK TO A POTENTIAL BUYER
AVOIDING PITFALLS OF INEXPERIENCE
WORKING WITH DIRECT CLIENTS
MARKETING TO AD AGENCIES / DESIGN AGENCIES
HOW TO WORK WITH CORPORATE COMMUNICATIONS
MARKETING: STRATEGY AND IMPLEMENTATION
STAYING IN CONTROL OF THE MARKETING EFFORT
A PLAN FOR STEADY GROWTH
THE VALUE OF SOCIAL MEDIA
… AND MUCH MORE
So now it is up to you.
The course is free… no cost to you at all. When you sign up, and confirm your email, you will receive the first class and link to the module page. The class is a video, and a PDF is there for you to download as well.
The videos are 100% training, no selling at all. Yes, there will be a sales message coming, but it will be at the end of all the training videos. I want to be up front about that and let you know it is far more important for me to give you this real training than to bombard you with sales emails.
I know you will get a lot out of this four course training, and I look forward to hearing from you on how it is working out for you. Please feel free to send me an email if you have a specific question, but also know that I may post that question and answer (respecting your privacy of course) for others to learn from.
The signup is below, and know we never EVER sell or give your email addy to anyone. EVER. Thanks for taking a look. Here’s hoping for your success!