Local Talent Spotlight – Graphic Designer | Photographer – Maripili Menchaca 

Local Graphic Designer, Social Media Strategist, Photographer and creative Calligrapher, Maripili Menchaca was my go to person for this special project. When my client asked if I could provide photos from our Quinceañera session to create ninety plus unique party favors on 3-inch round wood pieces for their actual event to give away to their guests, I turned to Maripili. I had seen her work previously in her Instagram account and her Etsy shop “Charmingly Created“, and her style of work was perfect for this project.

The photography part for this project was easy for me to complete, but adding the message to the pieces was where I knew I needed help. Maripili was kind enough to make several samples for my client to see and choose from.  The finished project turned out to be great and my client loved it! I highly recommend Maripili for any creative services. You can find her work at the links below:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/maripilistudio/ Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/maripili.mp/ Etsy Shop: https://www.etsy.com/shop/CharminglyCreated?ref=l2-shopheader-name

If you are looking for a unique fusion of photography and specialized handcrafted party favors for your special event and would like a quote for our photography services please fill the contact form below.

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Christmas Minis Dec 3, 2016 | Ben Briones Studios @ Grindstone Coworking

We are super excited for this coming Christmas season. Recently we have been promoting our Christmas Mini Sessions to our existing clients and new leads. Our mini photo shoots will be taking place at Grindstone Coworking located on 107 in Edinburg, Texas.

These quick and affordable sessions are great for the family looking to take some holiday themed photos but not have to go through the hustle and bustle of waiting in lines at the mall or paying a large amount for a sitting fee without any products. We are offering two free prints with our package and the opportunity to purchase the digital files or more prints. It will be quick and painless for those on the go and we promise to make you smile.

My team and I welcome you to sign up for a spot this Saturday December 3, 2016 for one of our Christmas Mini Sessions.

Photo Credit: Jessica Musick, Ben Briones

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If you would like to book a Christmas Mini Session please fill the contact form below.

Fashion Re-purposed: For Thrifts-sake – McAllen, Tx – Ben Briones Studios

Fashion Repurposed for Thrifts sake, a Creative Call to Action event, was hosted by Victoria Lopez and Mark Hanna in support of Mujeres Unidas at the McAllen Creative museum. Victoria Lopez is an Author/Poet & Founder of CC2A and Mark Hanna, Business Consultant/Motivational Speaker. Creative Call to Action is a RGV based organization that helps young talented artists get a leg up in the community. Last night CC2A gave 5 young minds a runway to show off their styling skills. Each contestant had only 30 minutes to sift through a pile of thrift clothes and come up with fashionable outfits for 6 randomly picked models. The looks they came up with truly blew the crowd away.

Seems Fuentes -Food blogger [The RGV Foodster], Sarah Davila – Fashion Blogger [956 Blog], Mireya Mendoza, Melissa Vega, and Straylooks deserve a standing ovation for their stylistic talents. The audience ranked Seen’s line to be the line in the night, they all won a series of prizes. The night didn’t end there.

Featured artists artists of the month were Diana Olivares and Josue Ramirez. Josue had built and installation in the creative center called “Piñata Abstract” and designed a series of outfits out of art supplies. Be sure to keep an eye out for these rising stars.

Photo Credit: Jessica Musick

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Chick-Fil-A – Pharr, Texas – Ben Briones Studios

One day I was enjoying an awesome lunch at the new Chick-Fil-A in Pharr, Texas. I had my computer out and some hard drives on the table working away on the latest work. A Chick-Fil-A employee came up to my table and asked if I was doing well then asked what I was doing. I told her I was a photographer and working on some photos and videos for my clients. She took interest and kept asking more questions.

Little did I know that the store owner was sitting right behind me and overhead our conversation. He asked me for a business card and said one of these days he may need some photos to help promote the store. We set a meeting to discuss what was needed and agreed on shooting a breakfast, lunch and dinner sessions with the store guest. Talk about divine meetings! Praise God!

The photos you are seeing today are from the breakfast session at the Chick-Fil-A Pharr, Texas.

Go, Go, Go! This Chick-Fil-A is located at 2023 Interstate Highway 2 Pharr,TX 78577.chick fil a pharr texas ben briones studios mcallen texas photographer 02.25.16_FB_Chick-Fil-A Pharr_Ben Briones Studios-2_FB_BBS chick fil a pharr texas ben briones studios mcallen texas photographer chick fil a pharr texas ben briones studios mcallen texas photographer chick fil a pharr texas ben briones studios mcallen texas photographer chick fil a pharr texas ben briones studios mcallen texas photographer chick fil a pharr texas ben briones studios mcallen texas photographer chick fil a pharr texas ben briones studios mcallen texas photographer chick fil a pharr texas ben briones studios mcallen texas photographer chick fil a pharr texas ben briones studios mcallen texas photographer chick fil a pharr texas ben briones studios mcallen texas photographer chick fil a pharr texas ben briones studios mcallen texas photographer chick fil a pharr texas ben briones studios mcallen texas photographer chick fil a pharr texas ben briones studios mcallen texas photographer chick fil a pharr texas ben briones studios mcallen texas photographer

If you would like to capture promo photos for your business fill the contact form below.

Good or Bad, A Review Is Good Business For You!

How valuable are reviews to your photography business? 

I would say that having good reviews or any type of reviews, rather they be good or bad, is extremely important to your business and to your potential client.

A good review assures you that you’re fulfilling your responsibilities and allows potential clients to see that you’re creditable.

A bad review also allows you to see were you need improvement. It challenges you as a business owner to correct the issue and lastly it shows potential clients that you’re human and make mistakes too. Just make sure to correct the issue and make it known to your online community.

On what social platforms should I have client reviews? 

  • Facebook
  • Google +
  • Yelp
  • The Knot
  • Wedding Wire
  • Your Website

How do I get my clients to leave me reviews?

To get a client to leave you a review is a job in itself! Don’t get me wrong, many clients would love to leave you reviews but getting them to actually follow through is tough. In my business, I remind them at our product delivery meeting, via email, via Facebook, and through personal texts.

At times, we have offered an incentive to our past clients to leave reviews on all our platforms.

Client Reviews Take Home 

Obtaining reviews is good business practice. Reputation management is an area in business (especially a photography service type of business) that gets overlooked. Usually, a business only gets attention when it is being badmouthed! I urge you, as a aspiring professional, to look into boosting your client reviews.

If you would like to have a one-to-one conversation about the importance of client reviews, please email me at ben@benbriones.com

Instagram; how to extend your brand!

As photographers, Instagram should be a must-have app on your mobile device! It really helps tame the urge to shoot because we now have an outlet to photography on the daily!

Now for the professional photographers who are looking to use Instagram for both pleasure and business; the thought process of posting images becomes much more strategic.

Can I make money from the images I post on Instagram?

To be honest there are very few business-minded photographers out there. You’re probably not concerned about capitalizing on “your passion”, but I’ll tell you this…if you’re not then you’re just a hobbyist, even if you charge.

To my professionals who do want to make a living off photography, here are some pointers on how to capitalize on Instagram through your art and personal images.

1. Become transparent or “real” via Instagram. People want to see who you are and what you’re really about. Post your art but also post some of your personal life. This matters because people do business with people, especially in our line of work. Client relationships are important to the service industry because the happy clients are the biggest promoters of your brand.

2. Build a following around your brand by using a unique hashtag that will filter your images for people to explore your brand on the platform. Encourage your clients and friends to use these hashtags on posts and reposts they upload about you on their account.

3. Create a call to action on the post you purposely upload to use for sales. Invite the viewer to your website or blog. Or to repost your image with a reward for doing so. The call to action doesn’t lead to a direct sale but it brings awareness to your brand or unique product.

4. Utilize the video capability of the application. Photography comes first nature to you but video will challenge you to be more creative and appealing to build a larger awareness to your photography. Make a behind the scenes video of a session or of you selling a unique service.

5. Reply to every single comment that is made on any of your posts regardless if pertains to your photography or not. This goes back to being real. People do business with people and as a photographer this matters a whole lot. A social media expert, Gary Vaynerchuck, in his book The Thank You Economy talks about how you need to give the one-to-one attention to your customer base, and in return they will buy your product.

Capitalizing on your passion via Instagram can and will lead to more sells but you just have to be consistent and strategic with how you use the app. 

If you would like to know more on how you can extend your brand on this platform, feel free to email me at ben@benbriones.com for a one-to-one training session.

D’ Gala Banquet & Special Events – Mcallen, Texas – Ben Briones Studios

One of my favorite venues to photograph at is the D’ Gala Banquet & Special Events located 2100 W. Nolana Ave. McAllen, TX 78504.  My first memory of this venue a wedding was way back when it was called Michelle’s but with the venue’s upgrade D’Gala is simply elegant. My favorite angle to shoot in this venue is shooting upward toward their beautiful chandelier display. My brand, Ben Briones Studios, has serviced clients in photography, videography and photo booth at this beautiful venue. Please enjoy some samples photos of my work at this venue.

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Contact D’ Gala Banquet & Special Events 2100 W. Nolana Ave. | McAllen, TX 78504 Office:956.994.0044 info@dgalaspecialevents.com to find out more info about their packages. 

If you are having a wedding at the D’ Gala Banquet & Special Events and would like to view more sample images from this venue please fill out the contact form below. 

Single In The City – J’aime Les Livres (I Love Books) Mcallen, Texas – Ben Briones Studios

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J’aime Les Livres (I Love Books) is a cool little book store located at 1219 N. Main Street McAllen, Texas 78501.  Martha “Marty” Medina has owned and operated this quaint book store for over four-years. One day a friend and I decided to explore the small shops on N. Main and when we walked into J’aime Les Livres (I love Books) we struck a cool conversation with the owner. She gave us the history on the book store and then told us about this special event that she was hosting titled Single In The City. The event sounded cool; she was going to have food, drinks and fun secure social environment to meet new people. When she went deeper into why she was hosting such an event is where it stuck some heart strings. I personally love volunteering my services for great causes and she told us it was a PINK cause by faith; I volunteered my photo booth to this event.  I want to be part of the local community of business owners so I knew volunteering the booth for this event and this cause would get me closer to that goal. I even took it one step further… I created this video for Marty and the event she is hosting.

So all you singles out there, come out and enjoy a nice night at a cute book store and meet new people and make a donation to good cause!

If you have an event for a good cause and would like to have a short video created to promote it please fill out the contact form below. 

Holiday Photo Sessions – Family, Love, and Good Spirits

ben briones studios ben briones photography holiday portraits

 

Fall is now upon us and it’s getting closer to those special holidays you enjoy spending with your family and friends.

Today I want to introduce you to some special sessions I will be hosting starting on October 1, 2014  January 1, 2015.

Holiday Photo Sessions are to capture the essence of your family, the love you share and the good spirits these holidays put us in.

Photo Session Details

  • 1.5-Hour Photo Session
  • Unlimited Poses
  • Any Location Of Your Choice
  • Pets Welcomed
  • No Limit On Family Members
  • 30-Image Photo CD
  • Full Printing Rights
  • 50 FREE Greeting Cards

Holiday Portrait Session Price: $285 + tax

TO FIND OUT MORE INFORMATION ABOUT BOOKING A HOLIDAY PORTRAIT SESSION OR QUESTIONS ABOUT OTHER PRODUCTS, PLEASE FILL OUT THE CONTACT FORM BELOW. 

Apologize To Your Client Now!

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“I’m sorry” in the business world goes a long way, especially when we fail to meet our clients expectations. As business owners we have so many things going on that sometimes we fall short and our clients suffer.

Today I’d like to give you 5 tips on why apologizing to your client is a good business practice you should implement in your photography business.

1. Saying “I am sorry” in person or via a hand written letter reminds the client that you are just as human as they are. Sometimes clients see us a brand instead of a person and they might disconnect, making them a little meaner to us when they are upset. Remind them you’re a person too with an apology letter.

2. Saying sorry reminds you to never make that mistake again. As business owners, we are dealing with so many things sometimes we fall short of what said we would deliver to our clients. Growing a pair and telling your client why you messed up will save you from future ordeals.

3. Bad reviews are just as helpful as good reviews. Never delete or remove a bad review on your business because then you would just be lying to future clients. My suggestion is to apologize publicly to that client rather it be on your Facebook page, in a blog post, on your google place, etc. This will show future clients that you are real and can be trusted.

4. Throwing in a gift card or some type of gift in your apology can quickly change the clients mood from I’ll-Never-Hire-You-Again to You’re-Not-That-Evil, which in the long run is good because you have a higher chance of the client referring you to friends and family.

5. Saying sorry should be limited. You shouldn’t have to be apologizing more than 4 times a year. Think of it as one of those rare Mario Party Candy like the Bowser Candy that allows you to steal everyone’s stars. Keep your apologies in your secret weapon drawer and only take one out when you absolutely need it and your reputation is on the line.

TO DISCUSS SOME SITUATIONS WHERE YOU HAD TO APOLOGIZE TO YOUR CLIENT AND WOULD LIKE SOME FEEDBACK PLEASE FILL OUT THE CONTACT FORM BELOW. TO HEAR PERSONAL STORIES OF TIMES I HAD TO APOLOGIZE TO A CLIENT PLEASE FILL OUT THE CONTACT FORM BELOW.