A list of documentary family photography business owner tasks

I’ve been building a list of all the things I do in my business, and figured it would be fun to share. I bet I’ve forgotten a lot, so I will keep adding to the list as I remember more things:


Phone calls

Reply to inquiries

Schedule video calls with inquirers (through calendly.com, eliminates back-and-forth)

Video calls

Client emails

Send contracts

Send contract reminders

Send invoices

Send invoice reminders

Write and send welcome letter

Drive to and from session


Download images onto computer from memory card

Back up images

Cull images

Pick a few to edit for sneak peek

Send sneak peek email

Order gift print

Post-process all images

Export images

Upload to online gallery

Send online gallery

Mark images that need to be kept private

Design and order photo book and prints

Photograph photo book and print products when they come

Package photo books/prints

Send off photo books and prints

Send thank you letter with gift print

Follow up with questionnaire about the family’s experience


Charge camera batteries

Empty memory cards

Clean lenses

Clean monitor, keyboard, laptop

Sending gear off to be cleaned


Collaborator emails

Read informational emails

Purge emails

Go through spam/junk folder

Email series updates


Record, edit, publish promotional videos

Email newsletter to past and current clients (once a month)

Write, plan, analyze, tweak Facebook ads

Design business cards, postcards

Order business cards, postcards

Client session and pricing guide updates

Portfolio sessions to fill in gaps in portfolio (with almost all steps described for client sessions + finding the families, picking the families)


Plan blog post schedule

Write blog post copy

Blog post title

Optimize blog post title and meta description for SEO

Link to applicable past blog posts

Pick photos in Lightroom

Export photos from Lightroom with SEO optimized file names, at the right size, through compression software

Add photos to blog post

Pick featured image for blog post

Add categories and tags to blog post

Schedule blog post

Share blog link on Facebook

Share blog link on Instagram


Facebook posts

Facebook Live videos

Instagram posts

Comment on other people’s posts

Be active in photographer groups

Be active in small business owner groups


Keep in touch with local business owners with same target market


Sessions with collaborators


Optimize for SEO

Update website copy

Update portfolio images regularly (with SEO optimized images)

Update any changes to pricing, process

Pay for website hosting and management, domain, security


Monthly check of profit and loss

Monthly categorizing of expenses in 17hats

Store digital copies of receipts

Adding print product sales from online gallery into 17hats

Setting aside collected sales tax

Paying sales tax

Evaluating and updating pricing of sessions and products

Gather and send information over to tax professional


Business coaching/mentoring

Listen to podcasts

Online classes

Participate actively in online courses





Planning goals

Planning weekly/daily tasks

Creating workflows and systems for client experience

Creating systems for different parts of work not related to client session

Writing/updating email templates

Updating contracts and invoice templates


Travel and drive time

Pick up rental gear

Post-process photos of client photo books and prints

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Documentary newborn and family photographer serving San francisco Bay Area, San Jose, Oakland, Berkeley, Santa Cruz and surrounding areas