For Photographers | Networking with Purpose

I am honored to be apart of an ongoing blog series for photographers by photographers. Special thanks to Erin of the Business of Beauty and you can read the other amazing posts here: SOCIAL MEDIA FOR PHOTOGRAPHERS | BLOG SERIES 

Portraits of Alina Villasante of Peace Love World. Featured on Oprah's Circle of Friends.  

Portraits of Alina Villasante of Peace Love World. Featured on Oprah's Circle of Friends.  

Social media marketing is such an important aspect to our brands and as creatives you may say, "why do I need to network in-person"? Or that you are currently frustrated and exhausted from attending so many events and never booking a client. 

The art of networking is so much more than just "showing up" and handing out business cards and then expecting people to be begging you to book. The funny thing is, that at net-workers no one in the room is actually there to "buy" or are looking for your service. Chances are they are also there to sell and represent their own companies. 

So you may say. Oh "that proves it" these net-workers are a waste of time but that's actually not the case. You just have to approach these situations differently and strategically.

The true art of networking is to develop authentic relationships. I once read that it takes "7 touches" for a potential client to develop their trust and to be ready to buy from you. 

You may call me old fashioned but in-person networking accounts for the majority of my leads. We are in a word-of-mouth referral business and I have found 5 key steps to successfully utilizing in-person net-workers to grow and create a thriving business:

5 Steps to Networking with Purpose:

1- Have a plan and a goal in mind. In my early years of business I would go to every single event I was invited to, with a handful of business cards and eager to pass them out to everyone. This left me exhausted and feeling desperate. Now, I am very strategic about which events I will attend...only events that my ideal clients will be attending. These are mainly, high-end women's brunches, fashion shows, and female business net-workers. (Looking into your local Chamber of Commerce, fundraising events, and your local BNI chapters. Find groups that you actually enjoy attending with people you can become friends with).

2- Be positive and feel good before attending. Nothing is worse than forcing yourself out after a long day at work and being in a "bad" mood. Not to mention trying to fake being energized, authentic, and engaging with people. So, I always plan for downtime before a net-worker to take a moment and set a positive intention, touch up my makeup, and leave early to feel at ease. If you are really in a bad mood or not feeling well, then your time is better spent at home. Skip the event. We don't have to do it all and the worst thing is to give off bad energy to potential clients. We want to be authentically excited to be there. 

3- Listen more than you speak. The best way to be engaged is to be present and ask questions. Let the other person or woman speak about herself and her business, ask insightful questions to get to know her better. This is also a great tip if you are a little shy, just ask questions. Everyone loves to talk about themselves which will then help you get to know her. She will naturally ask you what you do and that's when you can show her what you do. I always keep a portfolio of images on my i-phone and let my work speak for its self. 

4- Create a true relationship or friendship. People buy from people they like. Point blank. Women are incredible at making connections and helping their friends. Attend these events with the intention to make friends and to connect with people on a deeper level. You are not necessarily trying to sell to the people you meet, rather to their friends. 

Imagine this, the more friends you have out there saying "OMG I know the sweetest and most talented photographer, you have got to call her for your portraits (or wedding etc.), the better! 

5- Follow up & keep in touch. No one at these events is there to book you on the spot but they may have really enjoyed meeting you. This is where the follow up email/call, social media and marketing come into play. If a women did say point blank, "I'd love to hire you!" Then, the very next day you need to call or email her with a sweet message about what you spoke about. For everyone else you meet, add them to your newsletter list, invite them to like your Facebook page, etc. This is how your consistent social-media marketing will keep you in their memory as the "sweet and super talented photographer," So that when the time is right, you are the first person they call and refer to friends! 

Finally met Sue Bryce at the Photo Plus Expo and Photo District News Seminars in NYC, 2015.

Finally met Sue Bryce at the Photo Plus Expo and Photo District News Seminars in NYC, 2015.

BONUS TIP: Ask for what you want or who you would like to meet! I am very clear about the types of people I wish to meet, and am able to always keep an eye out for them as potential clients. I have also trained myself to learn to ask for introductions! If you would like to photograph someone specific for a company, magazine or beauty portraits, then ask for those introductions!

Women by nature are social, love to share and are well connected. We love to support our friends and colleges. 

Thank you for reading. I hope this was helpful. Thank you to Erin with the Business of Beauty for inviting me to blog about my experiences to help others thrive!

Want to read more from the 5 other incredible photographers: 


Day 1: Brittany Griggs- Budget Friendly Marketing for Photographers
Day 2: Feuza Reis – Are You Making These 3 Big Blogging Mistakes?
Day 3: Erin Rachel – How to Use Pinterest to Grow Your Business
Day 4: Erin Blackwell – Using Facebook to Find and Book Your Ideal Clients
Day 5: Cindy Reeves – Marketing Your Photography Business with Magazines
Day 6: Michelle Citrin – Networking With Purpose
Day 7: Melissa Lynn Hunt – 10 Strategies to Improve your Business Through Instagram

Behind the scene! Mini Headshot Marathons

This summer we had the pleasure of running two amazing headshot marathons for all of our fabulous men and women of Miami. Our first headshot marathon, we had the pleasure of photographing four amazing women. It was such joyous morning getting to know these women and have such a great turn out for our first ever marathon. 

Our second headshot marathon was as much of a success as the first! We were lucky enough to have the men to join us this time to experience what the mini headshot marathon was all about. A morning filled with laughs, coffee and tie-pairing, made the experience painless and very enjoyable for the two busy business men. Our lovely women spent the late morning getting pampered with hair and makeup as well as mixing and matching beautiful pieces of jewelry to compliment their stylish outfits. All in all, our headshot marathon was another great success, we are excited to see what additional mini marathons we think up next!

Enjoy our behind the scenes shots of our two marathons!

Meet Victoria and Mary. They’re the mother daughter team of Cupid Dates, which is an organization that tackles the task of helping couples build long lasting relationships.  During this shoot, both mother and daughter were energetic and fierce, which led to unique portraits that can only be accomplished here at Neox Image Photography Studio.  

 Neox Image Photography Studio
 Neox Image Photography Studio
 Neox Image Photography Studio

Kevin and Justina were such a cute couple! We shot this engagement session on Miami’s South Point beach. You couldn’t have asked for better! 

Want your own engagement shoot to celebrate the event? Contact us for a wonderful Neox Image experience by sending us an email info@neoximage.com 

 Neox Image Photography Studio specializes in vivid, impactful imagery. Photographers Michelle Citrin and David Lloyd are based in Miami and work as a team to deliver professional photography.
 Neox Image Photography Studio specializes in vivid, impactful imagery. Photographers Michelle Citrin and David Lloyd are based in Miami and work as a team to deliver professional photography.
 Neox Image Photography Studio specializes in vivid, impactful imagery. Photographers Michelle Citrin and David Lloyd are based in Miami and work as a team to deliver professional photography.

Fall is the perfect time to shoot High School Seniors. Our shoot with Hanna out in Colorado came out so nice, we just had to show you! 

Interested in a Senior Shoot for your son or daughter? Contact us at info@neoximage.com ! 

Here at Neox we take pride in bringing families to life—and telling their stories. This is the Harriman family, who never had professional portraits done of their entire family. The Harriman’s came in to the studio to preserve the family memories and we had such a wonderful time working with them. Memories can fade—but photographs last forever. 

Book with us today! michelle@neoximage.com 305.576.7225

Our Before and After! 

This is Lindsey, you all saw her behind-the-scenes two weeks ago and now you get to see the reveal! Her photos turned out FABULOUS and she was so excited over them. 

Do you want your own photoshoot and makeover? Don’t hesitate to email us today! info@neoximage.com !  

Behind The Scenes

Enjoy the photos from our latest shoot! Lindsey is normally our stylist, but for today, she was our model. She got to enjoy our total transformation experience where we take everyday women and make them realize their true beauty inside themselves.