223 episodes

Are you a pet photographer hoping to start or grow your business so that you can finally live the life of YOUR design? Welcome to your one-stop-shop for practical tips, actionable strategies, detailed case studies, interviews with industry leaders, and everything else you need to start making money in pet photography. - Your host is Nicole Begley, a zoological animal trainer turned pet photographer. Nicole has been running a successful pet photography business since 2010 and is also the founder of Hair of the Dog Academy where she has helped people just like you build profitable pet photography businesses all around the world. - In this show, you will learn about photographing animals, starting your pet photography business, working with clients, pricing your photography, selling your photographic art, marketing your photography business, and creating an incredible client experience.

Hair of the Dog Podcast Nicole Begley

    • Arts
    • 4.9 • 98 Ratings

Are you a pet photographer hoping to start or grow your business so that you can finally live the life of YOUR design? Welcome to your one-stop-shop for practical tips, actionable strategies, detailed case studies, interviews with industry leaders, and everything else you need to start making money in pet photography. - Your host is Nicole Begley, a zoological animal trainer turned pet photographer. Nicole has been running a successful pet photography business since 2010 and is also the founder of Hair of the Dog Academy where she has helped people just like you build profitable pet photography businesses all around the world. - In this show, you will learn about photographing animals, starting your pet photography business, working with clients, pricing your photography, selling your photographic art, marketing your photography business, and creating an incredible client experience.

    The Offline Photographer with Heather Lahtinen Part 1

    The Offline Photographer with Heather Lahtinen Part 1

    219 - You spoke up and we listened. 


    You all loved The Coaching Journals with Heather Lahtinen, Christi Baker and Monica Adalsteinsson that we're bringing them back. 
    Ish. 


    Christi and Monica are off soaring like eagles after six months of intensive coaching with Heather and the Elevate program. Today, we're introducing a spinoff series, called The Offline Photographer, and it's inspired by the challenges of the same name that Heather is currently holding in Elevate. 


    These challenges are designed to make you a networking, marketing boss, getting you out into your community to talk all things pet photography. 


    Heather is picking a photographer in the challenges each month to interview and share their journey. This month, we're hearing from Laura Wombwell of Hamilton, Ontario, who's making a name for herself with quirky fantasy composites and dramatic portraits.

    What to listen for 
    4:24 The genius behind Laura's fundraising event 
    9:56 The delicate balance between charity work and business 
    21:19 How to overcome the fear of rejection 
    26:49 Why we need to retrain our brains and share our passion 
    35:23 Heather drops a new challenge on Laura 


    Guys, I am super excited to see where Heather takes this new series with her Elevate photographers. I'm confident she is going to get even more members of our community flying! 
    What's your takeaway from Laura's coaching? Comment on the 'Gram. 
    Connect with Heather
    Flourish AcademyFlourish Academy on FBFlourish Academy on IG

    Save BIG on Behind the Lens courses (75% off) or join the Hair of the Dog Academy for only $19 for your first month! More details here. 
    JOIN THE PARTY:
    Join our free pet photography community More pet photography resources here Connect on Insta Ready to get serious about your pet photography? Join us inside Hair of the Dog Academy! Check out my gear and my favorite books. Grab my book! Pet and Horse Photography for Everybody

    • 36 min
    Split Pea Soup and Photo Feedback with Heather Lahtinen

    Split Pea Soup and Photo Feedback with Heather Lahtinen

    218 - I completely get it if you see the word "soup" and here "NO SOUP FOR YOU" in your head.


    It means you might be old enough to remember Seinfeld on NBC every Thursday night. Or maybe you've seen that episode on Prime video.


    Heather and I are talking about soup on this week's episode of the Hair of the Dog podcast. No, not chicken soup for the soul.


    Split pea soup.


    More specifically, the split pea soup Heather's daughter made the annual soup cook-off fundraiser at their church.


    It was awful. 


    And Heather had to find the right way to tell Ella.


    Together, we turn it into a mindset shift for you in learning how to take feedback on your photos …


     and equally as important, to whom you should be listening for feedback that will help you grow your craft.


    What to listen for
    4:38 The ethical dilemma of saying something
    11:19 How to serve a "critique" sandwich
    16:59 Whose feedback is most valuable to you
    26:47 My friend hates my skirt and that's OK
    28:39 How to evaluate that feedback and move forward


    Feedback and personal growth are so important as a pet photographer and as an entrepreneur but your value as a pet photographer -- heck, as a human -- is not calculated by the opinions of people who don't matter.


    See? Your mom was right!


    Now do me a favor and give me some feedback on this episode. Comment on the 'Gram.
    Save BIG on Behind the Lens courses (75% off) or join the Hair of the Dog Academy for only $19 for your first month! More details here. 
    JOIN THE PARTY:
    Join our free pet photography community More pet photography resources here Connect on Insta Ready to get serious about your pet photography? Join us inside Hair of the Dog Academy! Check out my gear and my favorite books. Grab my book! Pet and Horse Photography for Everybody

    • 33 min
    Rock your Financial Goals with Heather Lahtinen

    Rock your Financial Goals with Heather Lahtinen

    217 - I’m going to take a stab in the dark at something. I’m guessing you’re pretty stoked when you hit a big revenue goal in your pet photography business. 


    Who wouldn’t be, right? Cha’ching! 


    BUT ...  


    What are you making that number mean? ESPECIALLY if you miss a revenue target — or if you were to have your revenue dip?!? 😱 


    If you’re human, you might feel like you failed or that your business is broken or you’re going to end up losing it all and living in a van down by the river.  


    * Shout out to Chris Farley for the motivational speaker! 


    Today on the podcast, we’re talking about goals — but not any goals. We’re talking about NRVs, or non-revenue victories — and how they’re critical for your success. 


    What to listen for 
    1:55 How revenue-related goals can lead to unrealistic expectations 
    9:17 Why security and stability come from within, not from sales 
    20:19 How Heather and I define success and security 
    28:56 The non-revenue victories you might look for 
    29:57 The connection between NRVs and The Gap and The Gain 


    You guys! We can challenge the traditional notion of success and work toward a more fulfilling approach that includes celebrating our personal experiences and the relationships we build in our businesses. 


    For me, it's all about freedom and flexibility in my schedule … the freedom to head to the barn and ride my horses, the flexibility to leave my office and take my kids on a trip to South America. 


    What does success actually look like to you? What are your NRVs? Comment on the 'Gram. 


    Save BIG on Behind the Lens courses (75% off) or join the Hair of the Dog Academy for only $19 for your first month! More details here. 
    JOIN THE PARTY:
    Join our free pet photography community More pet photography resources here Connect on Insta Ready to get serious about your pet photography? Join us inside Hair of the Dog Academy! Check out my gear and my favorite books. Grab my book! Pet and Horse Photography for Everybody

    • 41 min
    Dog Sports 101 with Brian Batista

    Dog Sports 101 with Brian Batista

    216 - Let me be quite clear: There are no cats at a Fast CAT event. Not a single feline to be found, I swear! 


    Nope, Fast CAT — fast coercing ability test — is all about dogs. Dogs of every size, dogs of every color, dogs of every breed and dogs of every origin.


    In fact, FastCAT, which is essentially the 100-metre dash for dogs, might be the most inclusive events on the planet.


    So how much fun would it be to travel around the United States photographing Fast CAT competitions?


    We get to find out in this week's Hair of the Dog podcast when I sit down with Brian Batista of Brian Batista Photography. Based out of Birmingham, Alabama, Brian left behind a 24-year career in information technology to chase dogs with his camera. 


    What to listen for
    3:56 Why Brian learned to create a safe space for rescue dogs
    9:15 When he got addicted to dog sports and photography
    15:05 How to get started in dog sports photography
    19:24 The challenges of managing event photography
    34:43 If you don't like road trips, this may not be the gig for you


    There's so much more than Fast CAT when it comes to dog sports photography. You can get into dock diving, lure coursing, flyball or agility … and all of it brings the biggest grin to Brian's face.


    Are you interested in this niche of pet photography? Tell me on the 'Gram.
     
    Where to find Brian
    Brian Batista PhotographyFacebookInstagram


    Save BIG on Behind the Lens courses (75% off) or join the Hair of the Dog Academy for only $19 for your first month! More details here. 
    JOIN THE PARTY:
    Join our free pet photography community More pet photography resources here Connect on Insta Ready to get serious about your pet photography? Join us inside Hair of the Dog Academy! Check out my gear and my favorite books. Grab my book! Pet and Horse Photography for Everybody

    • 45 min
    The Secrets of SEO with Inkpot Creative

    The Secrets of SEO with Inkpot Creative

    215 - So many of us are heading into the "offseason" right now, which means it's time to spiff up our websites and plan for 2024.


    OK, OK … take a little break after you fulfill all your client orders but then it's time to get down to brass tacks. One of the things you might want to put on your to-do list is working on your SEO.


    Search.


    Engine.


    Optimization.


    It isn't as hard you might think. The No. 1 thing you need to focus on is putting your personality, your unique experience and your style on display for your website visitors.
     
    For real, you guys! That is what will attract people to your website and keep them there. 


    KP and Jessie of Inkpot Creative join me this week on the Hair of the Dog podcast and they stress how your experience and style set you apart from other photographers in your area.


    They also run down specific tactics with SEO, like keywords, listicle blog posts (what the heck are they?), image resolution and size, video, and all the things.


    What to listen for
    6:42 Why you should focus on local SEO
    16:16 How to blog your way to SEO success
    24:10 How to optimize the images on your website
    26:57 Why AI content is OK but you need to personalize it
    29:36 How to use call-to-action buttons effectively
    37:49 The right way to use video on your website


    SEO and websites are an ever-evolving method of reaching our potential clients. I love the way KP and Jessie simplify it all for us.


    Do you feel like your website is holding you back? Comment on the 'Gram and let me know.

    Connect with Inkpot Creative
    Official WebsiteInstagramFacebook

    Save BIG on Behind the Lens courses (75% off) or join the Hair of the Dog Academy for only $19 for your first month! More details here. 
    JOIN THE PARTY:
    Join our free pet photography community More pet photography resources here Connect on Insta Ready to get serious about your pet photography? Join us inside Hair of the Dog Academy! Check out my gear and my favorite books. Grab my book! Pet and Horse Photography for Everybody

    • 47 min
    Navigating Thought Spirals with Heather Lahtinen

    Navigating Thought Spirals with Heather Lahtinen

    214 - I screwed up. 


    You guys, I'm human and I'm not (too) embarrassed to admit that I made a mistake. And I'm baring it all in this week's episode of The Hair of the Dog podcast.


    Here's the gist:


    I made some pretty serious assumptions about a client I booked last Christmas. I sold him a gift certificate as a gift for his  girlfriend. 


    I assumed -- because he is an acquaintance, not a cold sale -- that I didn't have to go through my entire process with him, that I knew what his giftee's budget was and that she would go above and beyond in sales what the gift certificate was worth.


    Nuts.


    I was staring down a potential $,5000 sale for wall art and an album … and it went over like a fart in church.


    Self-doubt hit me hard, and our good friend Heather Lahtinen of Flourish Academy walks me through my thought process and out of my negative space.


    What to listen for
    How I dropped the ball on communicating my processWhen self-doubt and worry started to creep inThe initial thought that snowballed into anxietyHow to handle a difficult money situation with a clientThe difference between a $500 photographer and a $10K photographer

    I share these moments to help you think through not only your communication processes with your client but also the way our thoughts and emotions can lead us to get stuck in unnecessary worry and anxiety.


    What's keeping you stuck? Hit reply or comment on the 'Gram and let me know.



    Save BIG on Behind the Lens courses (75% off) or join the Hair of the Dog Academy for only $19 for your first month! More details here. 
    JOIN THE PARTY:
    Join our free pet photography community More pet photography resources here Connect on Insta Ready to get serious about your pet photography? Join us inside Hair of the Dog Academy! Check out my gear and my favorite books. Grab my book! Pet and Horse Photography for Everybody

    • 51 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
98 Ratings

98 Ratings

Chitownsabby ,

Thank you!!!

Love this podcast, learn something new every time! Keep up the great work y’all!

Eye_Bleach ,

SO much good stuff!

I have learned SO much from this podcast the past couple of years. The stuff Nicole shares has been invaluable. Thank you!!!!

Townej ,

Favorite pet photography podcast

I am on my way through all the podcasts for the second time. Fun to listen to, very clear sound, and great information about pet photography. There is also information on growing as a person. I was never a podcast listener before, now I am hooked! Keep them coming!

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