The first couple years of my business were SO unbelievably unorganized! You have no idea… I’d have inquiries come in and I’d send them my pricing and I would forget to follow up because their emails would get lost in my inbox. Or contracts would literally be strewn about my office floor (or my bedroom, which doubled as my office in college!), and I can still show you some that are wrinkled or ripped from being trodden on. (Do you like that word? Trodden? I’ve been reading Harry Potter…) Anyway, I needed a good system to keep track of my clients! Mostly I wanted a way to keep track of inquiries. I was determined to follow up with inquiries and I couldn’t do that without a system.
I honestly can’t remember how I found out about Pixifi but I’m so glad I did! It’s been such a great system for me, and although I do not use it to its fullest potential (trust me, I know it can do MUCH more that what I use it for), it is still worth its weight in gold to me.
So here are what my inquiries look like. By default, they’re viewed in the order you add them, but you can order them by the event date, too. I have created my own “statuses” for different stages of inquiries, each with a color for quick reference. Yellow means I’ve sent pricing to the client, orange means I’ve sent a follow up, there’s also a red status for the second/final follow up, and then green is when I’ve sent a contract and am waiting to receive that. It’s basically just a quick overview of where I’m at with things.
(Am I the only one who has lots of people inquire and then never respond?!)
You’ll notice that it also helps me keep track of how these inquiries are finding out about me. (A big thanks to all my photographer friends passing along weddings!! XOXO)
If I’ve sent two follow-ups without hearing back from an inquiry, if they decide to hire someone else, or if I’m already booked for their date, I will archive their inquiry. It’s nice to have a little chart to quickly see which reasons are the most popular for archiving. (Again, am I the only one that gets ignored like crazy after sending pricing?)
I don’t know about you, but my WORST NIGHTMARE is double booking a wedding date. Literally, I had a nightmare about it a couple weeks ago. I was photographing a couple and another bride comes running up to me in tears screaming that I ruined her wedding day. Seriously, worst dream ever for a photographer. So, what I LOVE about Pixifi, is that when I enter a new inquiry into the system and I’m already booked for that date, BAM! Big red notification! It would be next to impossible to double book with this!
Life. Saver. Seriously, this is worth the price of Pixifi in and of itself. No joke.
You can view all of your events on the calendar. Green events are weddings, pink are engagement sessions, and red are personal days that are blocked from bookings. Back when I was offering all-day wedding coverage there was absolutely no way I could shoot 2 weddings in one weekend, so for the most part I only book one wedding per weekend. To prevent accidentally booking multiple ones, I have to block off the surrounding days. Now that I’ve switched to limited coverage I might start doing multiple weddings on a weekend, but we’ll just have to see. Those are the days the Mister is home from work, ya know… ;)
The calendar can sync up with my iPhone so if I’m out and about I can quick check things. I use my iCal for personal stuff, so it’s nice to see the business events pop up and not have to enter it all in to two systems.
And one of the best parts about Pixifi is their Facebook group community. It’s so incredibly easy to ask questions, get help, and make requests and I just love it! The other day I was having a bit of an off day, and I entered in an inquiry for a couple that hadn’t set an official date yet. Well, by default, the Pixifi system would automatically set the date as December 31, 1969. It does that for all of them, so the little red “already booked” notification would pop up and it was just driving me nuts! So I posted in the group asking if we could just have the date be left blank if *we* leave it blank, and the owner was able to fix that little bug quickly and now it’s not an issue. I just love it!
So anyway. I know that Pixifi can do so much more (payments, contracts, etc), but I totally love how I’ve got it going right now! If you want to check Pixifi out for yourself, you can do so here!
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