Hi, I'm Michaela, the heart behind Lovely & Planned. This blog is all about elopements and destination weddings, but you'll also find general tips and advice on wedding planning. I'm so happy to have you here! Grab a cup of coffee and stay a while!
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The Pros and Cons of Styled Shoots for Wedding Professionals
Before we look at the pros and cons of styled shoots, you might be wondering what a styled shoot even is. In short, a styled shoot, also called an inspirational shoot or editorial shoot, is an opportunity for creative professionals to get together to create a fake aka styled wedding.
While some wedding professionals love styled shoots, others strongly dislike them. Personally, I’m an advocate of editorial shoots. I have executed quite a few in the last years and honestly believe they can be worth it.
But for you to forge your own opinion, let’s look at some pros and cons of styled shoots from a wedding professional’s perspective. Because advantages and disadvantages for wedding couples are a whole different story.
Styled Shoot Pros
Build your portfolio: if you are a newbie in the wedding industry, or even after a low wedding season, styled shoots are a great way to get new quality images. You can use them for your marketing material, your social media, and your website.
Showcase your style and build your brand: not every wedding (especially at the beginning of your career) reflects your style. So, an editorial shoot is a great way to create images that match your style, and therefore, help build brand awareness and attract your ideal clients.
Connect with other industry professionals: styled shoots give you the chance to meet, work, and connect with like-minded creatives, and build wonderful relationships over time. Also, good vendor relationships are an effective way to grow your business through referrals.
Develop your skills: styled shoots allow you to grow your creative muscle as you can practice and refine your skills and try out new ideas. Challenge yourself, get creative and have fun with the latest trends. It also gives you a chance to test designs you might never dare to try out for your client’s wedding.
Drive traffic to your website and boost your social media presence: styled shoots can help you with your SEO. Because if you get published on wedding blogs, you receive valuable back-links to your website. In addition, if the entire team tags you on social media, it’s one of the best ways to increase your engagement and boost your social media presence.
Build authority through social proof: once a styled shoot was published on a wedding blog, add those featured on badges to your website. They prove to your clients that you truly are talented and an expert in what you do.
Styled Shoot Cons
Time-consuming: truth be told, styled shoots are a lot of work and highly time-consuming. Especially if you are the initiator. Inspirational shoots can take months to plan, as a successful shoot usually has the same requirements as a wedding. You should have a concept, a vision board, create timelines, checklists, and a photoshoot shot list. You need to reach out to vendors, organize all different kinds of items, and coordinator every detail. Then, the shoot day itself can easily take up a whole day. After the shoot, it’s usually the responsibility of the initiator to submit the shoot to wedding blogs and send out image links to the team.
Expensive: even though vendors often collaborate for free in exchange for the images, you can never assume that. Also, a bridal boutique may lend a wedding dress, but you need to pay for the dress cleaning. Or a florist might provide the flowers but asks you to chip in on transportation costs. And if you want to hire professional models, they hardly participate for free. Plus, miscellaneous expenses can quickly add up, like snacks or drinks that you provide during the shoot.
Huge responsibility: as the initiator of a styled shoot, you are in charge of creating a vision, finding the right team to execute it and deliver the results you promised. You have to give the team enough freedom to be creative and try out new things while at the same time making sure everyone stays in line with the initial vision so that everything comes together perfectly.
No guarantee: even if you created a stunning styled shoot, there is no guarantee that you will get published.
Styled shoots can be a fantastic way to polish your portfolio, perfect your skills, meet like-minded creatives, build vendor relationships and boost your SEO and social media presence. But at the same time, they are time-consuming, often expensive, and overall a huge responsibility. Therefore, you must weigh the pros and cons for yourself if a styled shoot is worth it to you.
I hope I could shed some light on the pros and cons of styled shoots! If you have any more questions, feel free to email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or get in touch with me right here.