What and when is engagement season?
Engagement season is the time of the year from November until February, when the industry sees a spike in engagements. This can also be known as booking season. The reason for the peak of engagements at this time is due to the holiday season (Thanksgiving through Valentine's Day) We typically see the highest engagement rates in December, year over year, So before we get into peak engagement season, take some time to prepare your business for a highly profitable year.
How do you prepare your business for the busiest booking season on the year? See our 5 tips below!
5 ways to prepare for Engagement Session
1. Deep dive into your analytics
The first step in preparing for engagement season is doing a deep dive into your analytics. Learning more about your past year in business will provide you with insights on how to make your business more profitable in 2023. Take time to analyze your website, social media, lead sources and sales analytics. Answer questions during this time like: What was the highest lead month or booking month, where did most of your warm, qualified leads come from, what types of blog or social media posts drive the most traffic to your website, is there a certain type of couple you seem to be booking that you can market better to, etc.
2. Update your pricing and packages
New year means new pricing and package offerings! Before getting into peak engagement season revise all of your current packages and pricing. With the high inflation rates and almost every expense category costing more than years prior, update your pricing to match the market and your level of experience. Also take time to review your package offerings. Are there any new opportunities for package add-ons or new services you can provide to better serve your clients and increase your profitability? In contract, are there any packages you would no longer like to offer or shape into something new? Make these changes before you see an influx in inquiries to ensure your maximum profitability in 2023.
3. Review your photos
You may have heard before, you attract what you show. And it is so true! If you are showing mostly DIY, rustic style weddings there is a higher likelihood you will book those types of weddings. So, when you are updating visuals on your website or posting on your social media platforms only post images of the types of weddings you are hoping to book more of. If you have some additional time in your schedule, you may want to consider attending or collaborating on a styled shoot. Styled shoots are great ways to show off your best work without the limits of a clients budget or design preference.
4. Audit your website + online storefronts
Without a professional and easy to navigate website it will be difficult to book high end clients since your website serves as one of the first representations of you and your work. Put yourself in the clients position. If you were looking for a high end, luxury wedding photographer but you went to their website, or online storefront, and it was full of blurry photos with typos and no navigation bar or easy ways to contact them you would probably move onto another vendor. When auditing your website use the following points as a checklist:
Does your website load quickly? Slow loading speeds may cause your viewers to get frustrated and navigate away from your page.
Does your website and storefront copy illustrate who you are, what you do and the type of clients you serve?
Is your webpage easy to navigate? Is it difficult for viewers to find your contact information, photos of your work, and your packages and pricing information?
Are you showing photos that appeal to your ideal clients?
Do you have defined keywords for each page and is it included throughout your copy?
Does each link or clickable button function correctly?
Do you have clear call to actions on each page of your website?
Do your website and storefronts look good in both mobile and desktop views?
5. Show up on social media
Posting consistently is one of the easiest, investment free options for getting your work exposed to more potential clients. When posting to your social media pages include clear photos that demonstrate your ideal client type, utilize hashtags that are both general (like #wedding) and location specific (like #newyorkweddingphotographer), and always include a call to action in the caption. Engagement season is also a great time to run social media ads or boost posts!
While you may feel a little burnt out from the 2022 season, we can assure you that it will not last forever. Rather than hoping for the best, as the 2023 season approaches, audit your online presence and enter the new year with intentional marketing practices that will bring you more of your ideal wedding clients!