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By John Owens
It's inevitable--fall/winter (and flu season) is coming, and when it hits, it hits hard. And having to wait a couple of days to see a doctor or not finding the time during business hours to make your way to see one can take a toll!
So this might not seem like much, but here's a real-life solution to help photographers soften the blow: Call a Doctor Plus. This is the latest membership benefit from PPA!
Call a Doctor Plus can save you both time and money when you're not feeling well or have health questions. This telemedicine solution can get you answers, assistance, and even simple prescriptions just by picking up the phone. Consultations are available via a quick call, online or through Call a Doctor Plus's mobile app. This service is available to anyone, but Teladoc agreed to provide this service to PPA members at a very small monthly fee!
What's Call a Doctor Plus?
- Wear comfortable clothes and get down on the ground at pet level. Avoid a bunch of photos of the top of dog heads. Number two - be patient. Patrick Grannan
- For dogs, it's all about their comfort. They love to perform and interact with their owners. Watch and wait and you will see certain behaviors and expressions. They are easy enough to capture when they happen if you can predict the moment. Eugene Lugo
- Don't even think about doing pets until you love animals - they will feed off your discomfort and the distrust will be evident in your images. You need to connect. Eugene Lugo
- The main thing when working with pets is patience! No matter how well behaved, they don't understand photography. By staying with it and working with the pet you'll always come out with some great images. However, their attention span is only so long.(I've had models like that). Keith Ibsen
- Cats are all about comfort - but the older ones are wary and quite self-aware and are more difficult because the body language is far more subtle. Regardless, if you watch and wait, you'll see what you're looking for. Kittens are easier in some respects, but you need to be fast on your feet. Eugene Lugo
- Don't let the owner become frustrated or anxious, the animal will know. Also, photograph the dogs with their people. A lot of dog photographers don't do that and it is missed revenue. Margaret Bryant, M.Photog.Cr., CPP
- Limit the number of people you have trying to get the pet to perk up and pay attention... the fewer distractions, the more apt the cat or dog will key on you/the camera. Let cats sniff you first. You don't want the "airplane ears" look of distrust. Frederick Dunn
John Owens is PPA's resident wordsmith. Know how they say a picture is worth a thousand words? That's where he comes in. The Connecticut transplant and (still) avid Hartford Whalers fan is an aspiring adventurist/novelist/racer on a lifelong quest to find the best trails, brews and burger.
The process of getting paid shouldn't pull ridiculous amounts of money out of your pocket.
PPA photographers can take advantage of a member benefit to save on credit card processing fees. PPA has negotiated deeply discounted processing rates through Bank of America Merchant Services. Watch the quick (<one minute) video below and visit ppa.com/BAMS to learn more so you can Be More Business-Savvy.
Call a Doctor Plus, the latest membership benefit from PPA, can save photographers both time and money when they're not feeling well or have health questions. For a modest monthly fee, PPA members can simply pick up the phone or log on to a website to get answers, assistance, and even prescriptions.
Call a Doctor Plus is a health and wellness telemedicine program that provides patients with effective, immediate access to medical goods and services. There are no copays, deductibles or per-call charges. Photographers who are members of PPA get service for an exclusive low monthly subscription.
Call a Doctor Plus provides 24/7 access to U.S. certified physicians who can diagnose and prescribe over the phone or through an online chat. Prescriptions are sent directly to the patient's local pharmacy, and records are sent to their primary physician. The benefit covers up to five dependents at no extra cost.
One member who's already used the service gives it a thumbs-up. "I requested a consultation online and was called by a doctor within 5-10 minutes," she said. "After providing a brief description of my symptoms, I was diagnosed with an acute upper respiratory infection. The doctor sent a prescription to my local pharmacy, and I had the medicine in hand less than an hour after I called."
Read more about the service at PPA.com/CADR+.
By John Owens
Hundreds of dollars isn't a savings to scoff at, especially for small business owners like professional photographers. And if you're with PPA, you could already be saving too!
PPA got its members crazy low credit card processing rates by negotiating deeply discounted rates for PPA photographers with Bank of America Merchant Services. Members that have already made the switch already started saving hundreds. Some, even thousands!
How much savings? Here's some math you won't hate: PPA photographers get interchange plus 0.07% + a flat $0.07 fee per transaction. That equals one of the lowest credit card processing rates out there and more importantly, the potential for big savings for you!
There are NO pesky monthly fees, unless you add the option to process mobile transactions, and that's only $9.95 per month.
Your savings will vary depending on how many transactions you process each month, but any extra funds add up fast. So fast, that this PPA perk alone is paying for the annual membership of a lot of busy full time photographers! How cool would it be if your membership paid for itself like that?!
These low rates are REALLY hard to beat; you'll most likely save a large amount of cash each month if you make the switch. Compare now how much you could save now, it's free! At PPA we're here to help you Be More Profitable.
PPA and partner Lockton Affinity, LLC, have reduced liability insurance rates for PPA photographers from $289 a year down to $236.
"This new rate is a huge deal for PPA photographers," said Kristen Hartman, PPA director of member value and experience. "It makes our liability insurance one of the most affordable out there for small businesses. We recommend all of our members get this extra coverage. In fact, many venues will require that photographers have it."
PPA's general liability policy is there for photographers in case a client or anyone is injured or if any property is damaged while on a shoot. In these instances--the photographer could be held responsible for damages and that means thousands of dollars in reparation or worse, legal battles. Some examples include if a client trips over a light and injures their arm, or the photographer backs up too far a knocks over a vase. That's where the liability insurance comes in.
"If something bad happens and the photographer is held responsible, it could be financially crippling," said Hartman. "This insurance is another way PPA protects photographers. Liability insurance is a great thing to have in your back pocket, as bad things do happen.
"It's important to note that liability insurance is not what most photographers currently think they have. It's different than home owners insurance, business insurance, or even equipment insurance, but it is much needed protection, especially for event photographers."
Lockton Affinity, LLC is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Lockton Companies (the world's largest privately held insurance brokerage firm) and is dedicated exclusively to the administration of insurance programs for associations, franchises, professional organizations and other affinity groups. Lockton Affinity designed for PPA a unique insurance program to meet the insurance needs of PPA photographers.
PPA's general liability insurance covers PPA photographers for up to $1 million per occurrence with a $2 million aggregate limit. For more information visit PPA.LocktonAffinity.com/BusinessLiability.htm.