If you're a member of the Longarm League or have been following us on Instagram or our through our mailing list, you've no doubt seen several mentions of our pal Shelly Moore of Ma Tante Quilting. Shelly has been a member of the League since day one (literally) and was the very first coaching call that we published in our membership content. Since then, it has been incredible to see her growth as a longarm quilter and business owner in her own right.
We've recorded several conversations in the last few years in order to share Shelly's insights as she's grown her business. If you are a member, these links will take you to the following lessons:
She's also been featured in our previous blog post that you might want to check out if you've been thinking about using Sew Tites Magnums for loading a quilt.
Today, our members received access to a new discussion with Shelly about what led her to investigate and then hire a brand photographer (membership lesson link). I was personally very curious about this process because I'd been debating whether or not getting brand photos taken would be helpful for our business.
Marketing experts tell us that people like to do business with other people/brands that we know, like, and trust. If we want to reach others outside of our existing personal networks, it's a challenge to build that know, like, and trust factor if we're never visible on our website or social media accounts.
I'll speak for myself, but I also find it very difficult to take a photo of myself that I feel good about. I'm afraid I was born too early to have a strong selfie game.
Enter, brand photography.
Below is an example of a fabulous photo Shelly was able to get out of her session. There are about a hundred more where that came from! Shelly gave us some great time- and frustration-saving tips for planning a shoot (with quilts) and maximizing the results.
From my point of view as a friend and observer of her business, I really started to notice how much of an asset her brand photos were when she began planning for the most recent launch of her course called Beginner Quilt Photography (my affiliate link).
See? These are just a smattering of graphics she was able to create in Canva because of the pool of awesome photos she already had.
Again—looking at Shelly's examples—these are shots that would have been difficult to achieve on her own. That's why she hired a pro even though she can take great photos of quilts with her phone. We're talking about different kinds photos for different uses.
Even if you don't have a product like a course or pattern to sell, wouldn't it be great to have professionally styled photos of you in your element, like at your longarm machine, binding, or prepping a quilt to load? Brand photos could be the perfect way to add a personalized touch to your website or social media accounts.
By the end of our conversation, I was convinced that I needed to schedule my own brand photo shoot with a local photographer. I googled "brand photographer near me" and perused websites until I felt a connection with one (kind of like potential clients do when searching for a longarm quilter!). The brand photo shoot is coming in the next few weeks and I'm really excited for it! I feel a lot more prepared after getting Shelly's tips.
Speaking of Shelly's promo images for her upcoming course, let me give you some more information about that because it's kind of wild how the timing worked out for this!
Shelly teaches tried and true methods for improving photos of quilts using only a smart phone - no fancy equipment required. She gears this information specifically to us as quilters and longarm quilters. The course is open for a short enrollment period now. (My affiliate link.)
She is hosting three free trainings to share some practical tips, answer questions, and provide info to let you decide if her course is a good fit for you. As of today, (October 12, 2022) one of those classes is already in the past but you can register for one of the remaining free trainings at my affiliate link here: Post Like Your Quilty Hero.
Don't wait to sign up, the trainings take place tomorrow and Saturday. If you're even a little curious about what this course is, it would certainly be worth checking out the free training to find out.
Thanks to Shelly for her time! I always get a lot out of our conversations. She's also a great follow on Instagram. You can keep in touch with her there: @matantequilting.
We'd love to share a little bit about how we support longarm quilters through education and community. Updates typically go out on Wednesdays - we'd love to stay in touch with you!