Are you a photographer who hates writing?
This one’s for you.
I’m not going to sit here and tell you that I can turn you into someone who loves writing in one blog post. That would be … ridiculous. But I can give you 7 tips to make writing less painful. And isn’t that what we are all after? A little more ease in life? Use these tricks the next time you feel stuck:
1. Don’t write. Talk.
Yep. Sometimes we make writing a lot harder on ourselves because we think we need to put pen to paper or our fingers to a keyboard. But if you’re a verbal processor (like yours truly), then your best ideas are going to come from talking. So get your ideas flowing, either by yourself or in a conversation with someone you trust, and record it. I use the voice memo app on my phone. A tip within a tip: after your next wedding or photo shoot, record a two-minute voice memo to yourself about how you feel, what you loved, or a funny thing that happened. Then use that when you want to blog those photos. It will be SO much easier and you will thank you past self immensely.
2. Repurpose what has worked before.
We all have that one blog post or Instagram caption or email or piece of copy on our website that works well for us. Examine what has worked well for you in the past and ask yourself “Why?” Why did it perform well? Why do people respond to it? How can you replicate that same feeling or energy again? Use what worked on Instagram in a newsletter. Use what works on your website as a social media caption. People absolutely do not read everything you write. Repeat your good stuff everywhere!
3. Don’t start with a blank page.
Blank pages are often the hardest part. It feels so hard to actually get momentum going. So don’t let yourself sit and stare. Start writing, even if it’s nonsense. Let’s say you’re trying to write your About Page. I would sit down and write, “I’m trying to write my about page. This is hard for me because I don’t know what to say. I wonder what people think I should say here.” This sounds absurd but just getting your fingers typing and your brain thinking about the task at hand will make it so much easier to start. Get some dumb sentences out and I guarantee you’ll uncover a gold nugget of good info OR the thing that is holding you back.
4. Think about who is reading this.
Don’t think about all 2,349 people who follow you on Instagram. Think about the ONE person you would like to read this and book you. Think about the inquiry that got away earlier this year. What did that person need to read to fall in love with you and be convinced to book you? The who that you’re writing to should inform exactly what you say.
5. Let your clients write for you.
Read through your reviews, your emails, and your texts with clients. What makes them excited? What have they appreciated about working with you? And most importantly: what convinced them that you were the photographer for them? Use their words! What they love about working with you is what potential clients will love. Take their words and turn them into copy.
6. Just say what you need to say.
Don’t make it cute. Don’t make it funny. Don’t make it perfect. What is the point of what you’re writing? What is the goal at the end of it? Write that. You can always infuse the fun later. But the clarity of your message should always trump the personality of the writing.
7. Call people to action.
Start with the end in mind. If you know what action you want people to take at the end of whatever you’re writing, it’s so much easier to weave a story that gets them there. Know the job of whatever piece of copy you’re writing. If it’s to reach out to you, tee them up to send you an email or hit the contact button. Don’t leave them hanging!