You’ve probably seen photographer’s post about Honey Book, I’d heard about it for a while before I finally gave it a try this year, and here’s my report:
If you don’t know what Honey Book is, it’s essentially a back-end manager for businesses. It is specifically designed for “proposal based” business (i.e. Photography, wedding planning, interior design, etc.) Any business where the customer asks you for a quote and you come to an agreement for the job that needs to be done.
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I was honestly pretty hesitant to try a new system, since any type of change to the way that has worked can be intimidating. I asked A MILLION questions before finally deciding I wanted to try it out and see if it would save me time, and be worth the work of changing things over:
Some of the questions I had were:
Do I have to be in a contract, or can I quit any time
Do you get full access during the free trial
How difficult is it to transfer my files
Will there be help for me as I get set up
The answers were all good—you can quit whenever, no commitment, you get full access to everything during the free trial; as far as set up goes— they literally have a person who imports all of your content for you (you upload your contracts, prices, etc. and they help get you on your way to being integrated with the platform) and they have weekly webinars, as well as an online chat, and contact via email for any questions.
I will admit there is a learning curve. I had to ask lots of questions, and it took some time for me to get all my templates and workflows set up in a way that worked well for me.
Now that I’ve had everything set up and in use for a while, here are the things I have loved so far:
Honey Book makes sending, creating, and getting signatures on contracts SO SIMPLE. You can load templates of what your general contracts include and then edit them on the platform to customize it for each client/job. Getting signatures on contracts was always the most gritty part of booking clients for me, and I love that I can send it, they read it and sign it easily right from their phone, and I have it automatically saved and archived in my Honey Book!
One thing about inquiries is sometimes it can be hard to get to all of them in a timely manor. Honey Book helps with that by sending you a notification through the app when you get an inquiry. Since inquiries can be time sensitive, and many times, when clients are interest in multiple photography options, the person who responds the fastest gets a leg up in getting booked.
Another awesome feature is the templates. I specifically love the “brochure” template for my pricing guide. The format lets me easily display what is included in each package and rate, and potential clients can easily view all of the options available.
It is also quick and easy to update/edit pricing for when your rates change or if you run a special offer or made an agreement with a client that is outside the norm of your regular rates! You can easily update that potential client’s personalized brochure to reflect those things.
This may seem small, but it’s one of my favorite things! I love having a professional signature on the bottom of my emails with aesthetically pleasing links to my website, along with my contact info!
Honey Book is all inclusive. You can literally automate your workflow from inquiry, to agreement, to payment. But you can also pick and choose what features make sense for you and your business and create a system that works best for you!
For example, I have chosen to run payments through the system I was using before I signed up for Honey Book because I was happy with the way I had my invoices set up and I didn’t want to change it. This has integrated seamlessly with Honey Book— all I have to do is mark the client as “paid” and it moves it through the pipeline
The main thing Honey Book can really do for you is keep you organized. It has a dashboard showing at a glance all of the projects, inquiries, etc. that you have on your plate at one time. This is especially helpful during busy season when you’re in the middle of lots of projects and also booking new ones!
You have a dashboard, as well as a “pipeline” so you can see all of your projects broken down into stages, and help yourself keep track of where everything is!
From my experience, I think that Honey Book would serve pretty much any wedding vendor well (Florists, event planners, videographers, photographers, custom dress design, etc) And I think it would also likely be a good fit for other design projects as well.
If you’re ready to get your business organized and take some of the stress away from back-end work give Honey Book a try! They have a free trial where you have complete access to everything so you can see it all before you invest. They don’t even take card info, so it’s really “no strings attached’ which is the only way I really like to do free trials of things;)