June 3, 2019
Trial and Error: The Key to Nest & Love Photography’s Success
By Jenna Paulus, Public Relations Manager, Deluxe
In our “Small Business Stories” series, we hit the road to interview small business owners about their unique journeys. Each story provides inspiration and insights, while shining a spotlight on the passionate small business owners who are so critical to our economies and our communities.
Tanya Wright became interested in photography as a child. She would set up her toys in displays to take pictures. It wasn’t until 2017, however, that she decided to make her hobby a profession. Part of her goal was to show her three daughters that it was possible to follow your dream and be that strong role model they needed to pursue their own dreams. She went back to school, became accredited and bought all the equipment she’d need.
Seems easy enough, right? The thing was, achieving that dream takes time. She thought having the equipment and the time would equal success. It didn’t.
The problem with that plan was Tanya had just recently moved to Camas, Washington and she lacked a network of people who could be clients. Further, she didn’t have a studio or a storefront. So in launching Nest & Love Photography, she resorted to knocking on doors, doing free work for businesses in town and photoshoots with models in downtown Camas to garner more attention.
A few years later, Tanya has started to gain more traction in the area, but she still likes to support the small businesses in Camas who sustained her, because she knows working together and collaborating will not only help her business, but the entire town succeed.
One key thing Tanya learned early on is the spirit of helping each other out. Local restaurants often neglect the need to have quality photos of the food they serve. It can be expensive, but it is essential to showcase what is served. So Tanya helped restaurants in the area by photographing their food, allowing the restaurants to showcase the pictures on social media, giving a visual representation of what they are cooking. Together, Tanya and the restaurants are able to showcase their work.
For Tanya, social media is critical because it is how people find her. Without a storefront, social media is essentially the first impression people have of her business, but she finds it incredibly hard to showcase the quality of her work with only a website. It’s not just about her pictures, it’s about the experience, the photobooks, the canvases. Using different mediums to showcase her work helps her standout from the competition.
For many small business owners, learning social media can take a lot of trial and error. For her commercial side of the business, she’s found that posting pictures of the food and restaurants in the area helps her gain more traction with her posts. Whereas with the personal photography side of the business, the portraits really take off because everyone loves to share photos of themselves, so the engagement is always higher.
As a photographer, Tanya’s advice to any small business owner is to utilize great photography, on websites, social media, everywhere. You want to be the business people are attracted to and great photography can make that happen. Tanya may have started out a little rocky with her business plan but being able to recognize what was working and what wasn’t working and adapting to that, has set Nest & Love Photography up for success in Camas.