One of the most common reasons why photographers and planners don’t submit their real weddings and styled shoots for publications is simply that it takes too much time. I hear you! But the benefits are so worth the investment of your time. What are the benefits? Industry clout, increased exposure to target clients, easy social media content, SEO… should I go on? So we know the importance, now it’s time to figure out how to be as strategic as possible. Here are my top time saving tips for the wedding submission process.
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Time Saving Tips for The Wedding Submission Process
- Culling submission galleries. This one might feel counterintuitive, but stay with me. Different wedding blogs/magazines have different requirements and preferences when it comes to the photos they’d like to see in your wedding submission. That might mean the number of photos, landscape vs portrait preferences, whether or not to include black and white images, and then specific instructions like no food shots except for the cake. That’s why I pick a unique set of photos for each publication I submit to. It’s all about gathering your images in the perfect little package to increase your chances of getting published! Start with the entire set of images and cull one master set of 150 or so photos that tell the story of the wedding from start to finish. This is so much easier (and quicker) to pull from when selecting those publication-specific galleries.
- Time saving templates. Have a submission template handy in your drafts to plug your information into for your submissions each time. Some things to include: space for the couple’s names, date, wedding location, contact information, a brief overview of the day, link to photos and video, and the vendors list. You can also create templates for following up or sending the good news to the vendors and couple once a submission is picked up or published to save time.
- Use response times to your benefit. When reading through a publication’s submission guidelines before submitting (which you should always do), jot down their response time so you know exactly when you can expect to hear back. Write it down on your calendar, a sticky note, set an alert on your phone – whatever works for you – so that when the time is up you can either follow up or submit elsewhere, ensuring as little “downtime” on your submission efforts as possible.
- Plan ahead. Know where you’ll be submitting next and start working on getting that gallery together, resizing the images, and making whatever modifications to your template necessary per the publication’s submission guidelines. This way, when the response time is up on the last publication you submitted to, you can have this information sitting in your drafts waiting for you to hit send. When it’s already ready to go, it’s so easy! When you have to do the legwork all over again, it can feel daunting and discourage you from taking the submission any further.
- Use a spreadsheet to help you keep track of all this information + more. To make the most of these time saving tips for the wedding submission process, use a spreadsheet to be as organized as possible. This will help you easily see where you’ve submitted, where you want to submit next and any special notes you’d like to keep handy on the wedding you’re working on getting published.
My Getting Published Guide was dreamt up to help get you submission-savvy in a heartbeat! Full of tips, templates, the spreadsheet mentioned above + more, it compiles everything you need to know in one place so you can wrap up your submission in a pretty little package and find it the perfect home! Plus, we’ve talked to our editor friends at 40+ wedding blogs and magazines and have shared exactly how to submit to them to increase your chances for success! Looking for more hands on help? Contact me about my wedding submission services!