Announcing: The Barn – Online Resources for Wedding Photographers

Rock n Roll Bride Wedding | Lisa Devlin

Back in 2011, acclaimed wedding photographer Lisa Devlin started The Photography Farm. The idea was simple – a residential wedding photography workshop over three days. Included was a spectacular styled shoot, invaluable processing techniques and business school with special industry guest speakers. Since then, the farm has gone from strength to strength and with the edition of Farm Elements, a two-day class travelling the length and breath of the country, it is reaching and teaching more wedding photographers than ever.

This month sees an exciting new addition to The Farm family with the launch of The Barn, an online resource for wedding photographers. Alongside FXMedia, Lisa has been filming tutorials for over a year, pulling together an amazing tool for wedding photographers wanting to fill in any gaps in their knowledge. Easy to digest video tutorials show Lisa working with a real clients all the way through from their engagement shoot, the pre-wedding meeting and then at the actual wedding.

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Business Bites: Business Plans and Blogger Meets

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Photography: Chris Craymer for British Glamour

How am I going to Australia in three weeks?! But more to the point, where the hell is this year going?! So much to do, so little time… Ah sod it, I’m just gonna stop for a while and read some inspirational business articles instead. Who’s with me?

What inner city kids know about social media, and why we should listen
How to use social media to generate leads
♥  How to handle customer complaints
♥ 7 tactics your content marketing strategy Is missing
♥ Sorry, “working on your novel” is not a business model

“‘Making books’ is not my primary source of income as a writer. And probably never will be. Some writers might find that depressing. I don’t. I think it’s liberating.” Alexandra Franzen

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The Five Biggest Mistakes You’re Making With Your Blog

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I look at a lot of blogs. Not only am I a fanatical reader, but through running The Blogcademy I’ve now critiqued over 300 of them! In class, each attendee receives a report card where we give them some personal feedback on their sites. And after doing so many of them over the past 12 months, I’ve realised that most bloggers are making exactly the same mistakes.

To ensure that you’re not doing the same, here are the five main blunders I see being made over and over again.

1. You have a lacklustre About page (or no About page at all!)

Next to your homepage, your About page will be the most visited on your site. The likelihood is that if a brand new reader likes your content they’re next going to want to know about the person behind the blog. If your About page is lacklustre, boring or doesn’t entice them to want to know more about you, they are unlikely to stick around.

It’s no secret that writing about yourself is hard, but as Gala says, “It’s the best possible PR exercise! You have to be your own cheerleader, your own PR agent and your own pushy stage mother!” Remember, if you don’t tell people how awesome you are, no-one else is going to do it for you.

Online, we have the power to present ourselves however we want and to become the people we always thought we could be. While, of course, you shouldn’t be making things up, the way you talk about yourself can make or break how people perceive you.

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I was recently featured on the UK Wedding Academy site. Their article was loosely based on my About page (which I directed them to when they emailed to ask if they could feature me) and I was thrilled with how the piece came out. Why? Because they said all the things I wanted people to know about me! On my About page I’m not shy to big up the things that make me proud and to share the things I want to do more of. Therefore when they came to write their article, it basically contained all the things I’m most excited about.

If your About page is lacking some oomph, be sure to let go of your inherent shyness (a good tip is to imagine you’re writing about someone else), check out this advice post and crack on with bigging yourself up ASAP!

2. Your contact info is hard to find

It genuinely baffles me how difficult some people are to contact! Don’t make it hard for potential clients to get in touch with you, especially if you’re in a service based industry or if you’re trying to sell something. Your contact page should be clearly labelled and located in the top navigation bar of your blog (under your header). Failing that you could include it in your About page, but make sure you call it out very clearly.

Similarly, if you run a location-specific business, make sure you include where in the world you are based. If you’re a florist in London, for example, it’s unlikely that you’ll be wanting to work with people in The States. If you don’t include this vital info, how are potential clients supposed to know if you’re an option for them?

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Business Bites: Nerd Out!


Photography: Feather and Stone

Oh I do love a good workshop. This week I spent most of my time at the Photography Farm where a bunch of wedding photographers and I spent the whole time getting to know each other and gassing about our favourite topics – weddings, photography and blogging! There really is nothing better than spending time with like-minded nerds. I always leave these kinds of environments feeling super inspired and invigorated push myself and my business to the next level.

So I have some homework for you this weekend. If it’s been a while since you hung out with some industry friends in real life (Twitter chats do not count!) and nerded out, then do it… do it now! I promise you’ll feel better for it afterwards and head home with a brain-full of new ideas or at least a big boost of motivation!

Be sure to let me know how you get on…

How to become more influential 
Are you really your own boss?
The ultimate cheat sheet for starting your own business
21 harsh but eye opening writing tips from great authors

“Start telling the stories that only you can tell, because there’ll always be better writers than you and there’ll always be smarter writers than you. There will always be people who are much better at doing this or doing that — but you are the only you.” Neil Gaiman

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Why Isn’t My Business a Success?

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Dear Kat
I love the Green Room and your no-nonsense advice. I’ve read every post you’ve ever written and tried to implement your advice into my wedding photography business but it feels like nothing is happening. I don’t get many enquiries even though I think my work is OK. I’m struggling to see what it is that I’m doing wrong and why everyone else I look at seems to be doing so well.

I’m feeling lost and discouraged. I’m not really sure what I want you to say and I’m half expecting you to just delete this email anyway, but I guess I’m just hoping you might send me some words of encouragement…

There are two types of people who want to run their own business – doers and thinkers. The first graft, struggle, make mistakes and do everything in their power to make their business a success. The second have an idea, read lots of books or advice columns, know what they have to do but then (for whatever reason) fail to apply the lessons to their own businesses. It sounds harsh, but most of the people that fall into the latter category seem to think things are just going to fall into place because they want it badly enough. Wanting something is not enough, you have to go out and make it happen!

As you can probably tell I’m not really one to sugar coat things. If I’ve learnt one thing from doing as many workshops as I have over the past few years (both attending and teaching) it is that some people really are looking for a quick fix or worse still, for someone else to do it for them. It sounds stupid but learning the lessons isn’t enough, it’s what you do after the class that counts.

I love that you say you’ve read so much of my Green Room but (get ready because its tough love time again) have you actually been applying the things you’ve read or have you only really thought about it? You clearly have the knowledge of what it takes to succeed but what have you done with that knowledge?

Alexa Loy

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Sixty Students, Four Days & Three Very Tired But Happy Headmistresses Later…

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It’s hard to believe that in just under a year The Blogcademy has taught over 300 women (and a few token men!) about blogging and how they can conquer their corner of the internet. When we first launched the workshop we thought we’d meet some people, teach them some stuff and that would be about it. Never in our wildest dreams did we imagine just what an impact attending this two day class would have on the attendees lives… and ours!

“I had spoken to past attendees who raved about it BUT nothing quite prepared me how amazing the classes would be, the epic people I would meet, the rush of euphoria I would feel afterwards (it’s still going) and the self-belief it would instil in me that ANYTHING is possible!!!” Helen, Gwen’s Bridal Bazaar

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It sounds cheesy as hell but I mean it when I say The Blogcademy is so much more than just a workshop. We spend two days together, laughing and learning as we go, but it’s what happens after class that is really amazing. Bursting out of each class comes an army of passionate, driven bloggers who help and support each other way past those two short days. The secret graduates forum is something we created just in case students would like to connect with each other outside the classroom, but’s it’s become a life unto itself – a bustling place of love, support, advice and sharing. Many of our students continue to meet up with each other regularly and it’s so thrilling to see what they’re all achieving – together.

“Hanging out with so many other creative women in a positive and encouraging environment was really inspiring. I wish I could bottle the feeling and open whenever I need a boost – it was magic. That feeling is probably one of the main things I will take away from The Blogcademy. One of the quotes that I noted at the time was ‘surround yourself with talented people you trust’ – and it still stands out to me as one of the most valuable snippets from the event and very reflective of The Blogcademy in general.” Lynsay, Miss West End Girl

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