Mentioned in this Episode:
You are listening to episode 12 of the Level Up Your Wedding Film Business Podcast. Today, I’ve got my friend Jordan Jeanty on the show to talk about something pretty awesome – and that’s how he runs his 6 figure wedding film studio.
I’m your host, Taylor Petrinovich, and at the core of this show I want you to feel inspired to take your business to the next level, and I want to give you tools and practical advice to help you along the way. Let’s Level-Up together.
I just got off an amazing call with my friend Jordan, and this guy brought his A game for his interview. He had some amazing bits of wisdom and insight to share.
Jordan Jeanty Studios is a boutique wedding film company currently based in the New York City market. At the heart of Jordan’s business is the desire to develop genuine connections with each couple he serves. Over the past 4 years as a full-time wedding filmmaker, he has slowly and organically built a six figure brand while creating heartfelt and genuine films cherished by his clients.
Taylor: Hey, Jordan, thank you so much for coming on the podcast.
Jordan: Thank you for having me. This will be fun.
Taylor: Yeah, I’m excited that you’re here. Cool. So can you tell us a little bit about how you got started in your business? Like maybe your origin story…
Jordan: for sure, for sure. So first off, I know I said already, but thank you so much for having me. This is so cool that you’re doing this and you know, you’re creating this space and I’m definitely feeling super honored that you’re allowing me to be on this and be in your space, but for sure, So I’ll start off by saying, like, I don’t really have a formal background with this at all. It really kind of started in 2016 working in the wedding industry.
But even before that, there’s a time in my life where I was really just like travel, and I would take my iPhone on different trips with me, and I would record those trips on my iPhone. I’d come back home and I’d edit it all on on iMovie, and we’re just gonna having a good time with that.
And then from there ended up joining my film team at Church. I got the chance to work with some real cameras and then from there, ended up meeting somebody who had a wedding studio. And that was kind of how I transition into the wedding industry. I remember seeing this guy and he had really amazing work. And I had helped him out with something that was like a like, You have amazing work. I’d love to get to learn from me and every find that so handed up bringing me on as a full time employee. He ended up bringing me on as a as an intern first, and I interned there for about two months. And his company was kind of like, more like a wedding factory in New York City on they’re pretty well known at the time, and they’re doing, like, 200 weddings a year.
So of a lot of weddings, you know, But he had, like, a photo side in the video side and for me, I was on the video side. So it’s really just like editing during the week, shooting weddings on the weekends. And I did that for about two months and after that two month period ended up bringing me on as a full time employee.
So really just did that. And I think I like the six month period. It was really like he was sending me to shoot to shoot weddings on my own. I was a lead editor inside the studio, so all the all that it would have to come for me before going to the couple. It was just kind of like, just just like that. And for me, it was really great, you know, learning experience for me and every point that.
But I think over time I sort of realized that I would. I would love to do things differently. Had I been in the place to make those kind of decisions. Um, as you can tell it to know what? It’s a lot of weddings, you know. It is very tough to kind of have any kind of like personal aspect to that at all. And it wouldn’t be rare for me to walk into like to have you walk into a wedding day and with me, like just learning about the couple’s name, like, two days prior too So I’d literally, like, Imagine, like walking into a hotel room and I’m knocking on the door. And then when they open the door, had to kind of guess who the bride is?
it’s pretty awkward. But, you know, like I would like to make them feel like, as comfortable as possible, ask them questions and make them laugh and stuff like that. But I think just for me and I realized that, you know, when it was time for me to have my own stuff, I wouldn’t want to have a little bit, be a lot more personal than that, you know?
And so I did that for the year. By the end of the year, I was like, You know what? I think it’s time for me to step out and do things on my own, and you might see this on my website, but literally I took a leap of faith. I had no camera equipment. I had no clients. I had no work to show for myself because all that stuff was from that old studio. But I was like, I had a lot of faith in myself and had a lot of faith in God. I just knew that it was gonna work out, you know, over time. And, yeah, that was basically like how I started. And now it’s a little bit different than most people in the wedding industry. But, um, yeah, that was kind of my start. And so that was that. I was 2016 when I was working full time for the studio, and 2017 was when I started working for myself.
Taylor: That’s so awesome. Well, I think it’s super scary for anybody who’s delving into any sort of business on their own. There’s so much risk involved in it. So it’s super awesome that you, at least, like, had a little bit of experience. I was totally a newbie when I feel my first wedding. It was like completely on my own, and I just binge watched YouTube videos to get ready.
Yeah, yeah, they really help So props to you. So once you spun off into your own studio. Can you tell me a little bit about what your business looked like? Like what kind of couples were you serving? Where were you shooting them? Just like a basic idea,
Jordan: for sure. So in the early days, it was really just like me shooting anything I get my hands on, You know, like I think at that time I wasn’t strictly like I’m doing what I would have loved to be been doing that. But truth of the matters, like I needed to get money coming in and I’m looking. Looking back, it probably wasn’t the best of ideas for me to leave on the last day of 2016 because nobody’s getting like getting married in New York City in February. That’s just not That’s not like a heavy, you know, wedding season.
So again, I was just shooting anything. So I was, whether it be like, you know, promo, you know, promo content for, like small businesses or shooting events or shooting weddings and second shooting for other studios as well. That’s basically what it looked like, but I think the funniest thing about that is, but it’s funny now wasn’t funny Then I would be accepting jobs without having any gear. So it’s like, Ah, guidebook, something I’m like. All right, cool. I got this on the books. So you ready to shoot this? And then, like, now I have to figure out how it was gonna shoot it.
Taylor: So were you renting gear in the beginning?
Jordan: Yeah. So there’s two different sources. There was at a friend of mine, he was actually the the lead. He was like the the head of the What’s the word we’re talking about? He was the head of the film team in my church,
And, um, from now, just like that’s how I knew him and he would just allow me to just to rent his his stuff. But the thing about Davis, he was cool with me, renting, like renting and then paying him when I got paid. But then another option was Kit Split, and I’m not sure if you guys have this in in California, but basically it’s like you have all the different people who list a bunch of different gear, and that’s exactly how it’s doing stuff. So I mean, I would be driving out to Brooklyn or to Queens and Manhattan to pick up all this gear and literally I mean, just doing anything I possibly could to get my hands on gear to better shoot what I needed to shoot.
It was a little stressful, but it was It’s a cool story now.
Taylor: Yeah, well, I think that’s, like actually really valuable information, Um, knowing when to hustle and knowing what it’s like necessary for your business to hustle because I think that Ah, lot of people will see these other filmmakers who are like, kind of in a coast phase, like they’re just they’re up in the air and they’re just coasting. But it’s not like that in the beginning, you need to kind of pay your dues, and you need to do what you gotta do to get to where you want to be. Uh, yeah, so So what, Um, did you do to get to where you are today? Like, do you have any like, standout moments that helped to transform your business? Because you said that in 2017 you’re in total hustle mode, taking any work that you possibly can. And now in 2020 you’re charging like pretty good prices. Can you tell us what you’re charging?
Jordan: Absolutely. So as of right now, my pricing is starting at $4,250. And that includes, I think, nine hours of coverage, two filmmakers & a 3 to 5 minute highlight film that’s deliver within, like 10 to 12 weeks and couples can like add on different things from there. But on average, I would say that the couples are probably booking in the $6000 maybe like $6300 Range. But I will say that all kind of like it came gradually. For me, it’s like in 2017. It was really just I’m I might have had, like, like, three or four weddings on my own on top of like, you know, second shooting for other people. But then, like again, like year after year, we got better. It got better and more couples and more couples from there. But, um, in the beginning, he was really just a man like to get to where I’m at right now. I would say consistency, you know, it was consistent. Meet considered. See, just being reliable and, like, really doing a great job so that I can have number one like work to show for myself, especially in those early days. Like I wanted to get a show like this is what I could do, you know? And I’m not just like, coming off the street like I understand, like howto work in the wedding industry. And this is like the work that I can actually provide on the number two. It’s like, I really wanted to make a great impression on my couple so I could have great reviews to vouch for me, you know, because again, like for a lot of people, they knew nothing about me. And even though I was staying out something from this wedding studio like they knew nothing, nothing about that background. And also, I wanted to have people saying, You know what? I took a chance on Jordan, but you know, he did such a great job and I wanted to have that. Those kind of liking of validity and validation and stuff like that.
Taylor: Yeah. Social proof is huge.
Jordan: So big, so, so big. So that was the biggest thing. I think I just like, grow organically, you know, like I just I would you know, I would do a great job And, like, maybe like a bride will tell her cousin, you know, or, you know, I do something, and I put it on social media and somebody on social media would find it on. And it kind of like, just did like that I as of right now, I don’t really do any paid advertisement. But at the time when I was, you know, really just starting up. I think I I want our wedding wire Did that for about like maybe like a year and 1/2. You know, when I booked, like, maybe like four or five weddings from there. Um but I think the biggest thing for me is that I just wanted to make sure that I was doing a great job and leaving a great impression on not only like the couples that I work with, but also the vendors that I work with is well, make sure. Like I established those kind of connections in those kind of relationships so that you know it. It lets to me now where it’s like I don’t pay for any advertisement at all. Like my business comes from word of mouth where the bee from, you know, past clients or past vendors that I’ve worked with are just people that have connected with on social media.
Taylor: Yeah, that’s that’s actually the dream. Like if you can cut down here advertising and marketing costs than your kind of golden I have been going on the same Ah, similar path with mine. I just canceled my subscription with the not, um that actually was pretty lucrative for me. I think I like over the 12 months that I paid for it, I was like, five or six weddings like
Jordan: that sweet and paid for itself.
Taylor: They totally did. It totally did. But if I can cut that 100 bucks a month out of my budget, then Hey, that’s perfect.
Jordan: That’s funny, because in near in the New York City market, I’m sure it’s probably as you get to like, you’re you’re in Sacramento.
Taylor: Yeah. Yeah.
Jordan: So I’m sure if you go to like l a. Or like some like that, like those prices get crazy, you know, like, yeah, if you want to get like, a side, Listen, you’re paying like to to like $200-300 per month and it’s just like it’s craziness, you know? So shout out to the knot people. I think it’s amazing, and I definitely believe that it is a necessary step. But it’s definitely also really cool stuff when you could be like, You know what? I can have a profitable business that’s driving without having to pay for advertisements, and that’s a true testament to like somebody who really knows what they’re doing. And some of that really cares about what they’re doing as well.
Taylor: Yep, that’s right. And part of that is building a name for yourself on social media, having that social proof and then, like you said, building relationships with the couples and the vendors on the wedding day. So, Jordan, you and I actually met at Venture Workshop in 2018 in New Mexico. Um, I know that you did that along with a few other like educational things, and I am sure that those things helped you get to where you are today. And you Can you talk about those things with us,
Jordan:for sure. So I definitely believe that, like mentorship is huge. You know, and I think there’s there’s so much value in studying other people who have done exactly what you want to be doing, you know? So venture workshop, That was probably like this second big investment I made, you know, educational lies. Um, the 1st 1 I ever did. I actually did a one on one workshop with Henry Martin of The Brothers Martens. If you if you guys, I’m sure you know who he is. But for the people who do not know who are listening in, go check out his work, he’s he’s pretty official, you know? And, uh, he’s he’s great, you know? So I took up a session with him in the beginning beginning of 2018 and that, like, really just ah, open my eyes up to like that, I could be doing a lot more. You know, when it comes to my work, when it comes to my process is a cz Well, so I did that. I invested eventual worksite where I met you and so many other amazing filmmaker that I’m still friends with today, which is so, so cool. Um and I did that. That was an amazing experience. I think that was like one of the best trips ever. Just like we’re all hanging out of the middle of the desert. You know, it’s like a little come like you can’t buy those. It was really cool. And from there, I think I’ve invested in and I did like another works. I’ve got hustle and flow from, like, dropping a bunch of different names. I’m not
Taylor: sure. Drop it, Drop it. Okay,
Jordan: so yeah, I did Hustle + Flow. That was, like, more like business wise. And when it came to, like, branding and stuff like that and understanding like client experience, what else have I invested in? And, um, recently went to Vision Quest, you know, And that was kind of like That’s another one. That’s very, very similar. That to venture workshop, But it might have been a little more succinct and less like, you know, less amount of days, but is actually run by Sculpting With Time. They’re super amazing filmmakers as well. And I’m listening that so I truly believe that like again, you gotta like if you really want to progress in and get better yet to put yourself in position. Tau. It’s an alarm for people who are doing what you want to be doing, you know, and I feel like that has been a huge you know, that is Jordan my learning curve so much getting the chance to learn from people again who are a lot more advanced than I am. And I want to continue to put myself in those positions where I could better learn as much as possible because I believe that we all have room for improvement. You know, I don’t think that anybody ever arrives, and there’s always room, toe, refine and get better.
Taylor: I love that. That’s something that I have been talking about a lot on the podcast. I’ve recorded a bunch of episodes that haven’t been published yet, but if you keep listening, you will hear those. But learning is like, I think people will see it as something that you do when you’re first starting out. But I think as soon as you stop learning, you stop growing and you stop moving forward. And if you stop moving forward like you might as well be moving backwards because everyone else is moving forward around you. Um and I love that you keep going to different, like in person workshops. I just read the book. Um, I think it’s called, like a rhino or something. I don’t have it here, but I’ll link in the ship. Um, and it’s basically about surrounding yourselves with people who you want to be with and don’t be a cow. Be a rhino. So being like going to all these like workshops where people are like minded and they’re like super motivated to keep pushing forward is like it rubs off on you. And I think it’s really important and just, like, get you fired up, even if you don’t, like, learn as many like tangible things as you may have learned from the same workshop when you first started out like there’s still so much value and surrounding yourself with the kinds of people
Jordan: that’s so good and just a piggyback off that I feel like like the video of the wedding film industry and like, you know, the whole process of like creating wedding films. I think it’s a very isolated kind of situation, you know, it’s like, yeah, you’ll be in front of, you know, the couple when you’re when you’re when it’s time to shoot, but it’s like shooting on the wedding days is on, Lee, But so much of the wedding process. You know, I think about all the time leading up to like, the things you’re putting on social media, the you know, that the work they’re putting onto your website, you know, the editing process and everything that it just like it’s very isolated and they’re to be conquered. You just like, locked in and you’re in the editing cave and you’re not speaking anybody you haven’t walked outside for, like, two days. You know, Um but I think it is. There’s a lot of value again, like building that community and meeting other filmmakers who are doing what you’re doing here in the trenches with you that you can bounce ideas off or you can just, like again, just people that have, um, people that have similarities with you. I think it sze definitely a lot of value in and putting yourself in position to have those kind of situations.
Taylor: Yes, so true. So Jordan, I think that you are able to do something in your business that so many people want, and I think that you can offer a lot of value to us. You are making six figures a year running your running film studio. Um, can you tell us anything? Any pieces of information that you think that will help the listeners here today
Jordan: for sure. So I think I’m super grateful to be, you know, in this position. And like, honestly, like, I can’t even say that it’s 100% like my doing to get to where I’m at right now. There have been a lot of different, you know, factors whether it be the education or, you know, just like the relationships with other vendors that have, you know, like sent me Neil leaves and things of that nature. But I think the number one thing is I wouldn’t necessarily run. I personally wouldn’t recommend running your business saying I want to make $100,000 a year. I think, like maybe that could be like a byproduct of you just putting your heart into what you’re doing. And I think the number one thing that yeah, I think I like the number one things that couples will say, like after the whole process was that they felt like they gained her friend throughout the entire process, And I truly do care about like what I’m doing. And like the couples that I’m serving and that’s what it is like. I’m truly I’m serving like these couples and, you know, I just I just from the very beginning, I just want them that to feel comfortable and feel like, you know, they’re in the space where you know they have They found somebody that likes truly, especially really again cares about what they’re doing. So, um, I would say, just, like, walk into the wedding prostate, wanting a process, realizing that you’re creating something we get to create them that’s going again, outlive us, you know? So if you, like, walk with that kind of perspective like, you know, you’re shooting things and realizing that, yeah, I’m gonna be able to make it like, you know, great money doing this, And I could be like put food on the table and keep a roof over my head. But at the other day, it’s like what I’m creating is something that, you know in 50 years and 60 years and 70 years, like the family of this couple was gonna get the chance tow watch these videos and, like, just like, just experienced a moment in time that that happened so much, so long ago. You know, I think it’s such a I think I actually heard this on a podcast before in the past. I forget. I think it was Josh health and a little long distance. And I think he said something along the lines of like again, like at some point, like our couples, grandkids are gonna be, you know, watching these films, and they’re gonna get the chance to experience their their grand parents. When you know they can hear their voices, they can see how they interacted and see how you know the love that they shared something that I think that’s such a humbling experience. And I think if we walk into the process with that in mind that were created, and that’s really gonna be cherished, that it’s like money is gonna be a byproduct of that, you know? So just focus on your clinics, merits you focus on all like the heart, and, like, really serving a couple of you, you get the chance to be part of their day, and I think, you know, again like the money again. I say it’s over and over again, but the money will be a byproduct of all those different things. Um,
Taylor: yeah, I love that perspective. Like I think that we can get into such a habit of seeing each wedding as, like more of a business transaction. Like see that couple’s name in our calendar. We see you know, the bank account or whatever, but trying to remove that element from it and trying to focus on the fact that this is there one day. This is their day and you’re just a small role in that. And your job is to, like, do everything you can to, like, make that couple’s lives like better now and in the future,
Jordan: for sure. And like in those situations, like I almost I want to feel like I want to be a part of their experience. Like when I think about the wedding like I wanted to be like, Ah, man. We had Jordan on her day, and it was such a great time having him. You know what I think again? If you go, if you walk into A with those with that kind of hard in mind. It’s like couples are gonna love you. Couples are going to rave about you and then, like again, like over time, like, you know, a couple that’s in corn that might have, like a really significant budget. They’ll end up looking back and seeing a review from a couple that you really served and ah, couple truly does love him. Like, you know, Wow, this guy’s different. Something about hand or some about this girl. Like they’re different. I want I want to look into them. I want to be possibly had them on my wedding day Because they’re couples love them so much. You know, I think there’s there’s a reason for that, you know?
Taylor: Yeah, I think I think you’re definitely right.
Jordan: I love that. Thank you. Yeah. And I think that’s probably what sets you apart from from some of your competition as well. And I was definitely say that. I think, um I mean, I guess, like the vibe that I bring like that I think that’s what it is. And I really do. I really do try to serve the couple that I get the chance to work with. And I think the number one thing with my films like I want to make sure that it feels like them. So the entire process is super personal From the time they reach out to me like you ve e mo through my submission form like I’ll reach out to them. I’ll respond to them with, like, a a personalized response and everything. That and after a couple of different email exchanges there and right onto a facetime Cole and they’re getting a chance to just, like, toe to speak about their story and like, you know how long you’ve been together, how the proposal happened, and I’m like, I’m eating it all up. I think part of it’s up there. Sometimes I’m like, you know, like I’m tired, you know? I don’t know if I want to ask all these questions, but then as they start going, I start getting like I dived even because they get excited about what they’re talking about, you know? And then I just like I just eat it all up and then, um, ask him, You know what their wedding vision is all about? It’s like they’re talking so much about themselves. It’s like, wow, like I feel like I’ve heard, you know, and I just hear about that and then after maybe like 15 minutes of them talking about, you know them themselves and their story and everything that that’s when I switched gears talking. I start like, blabbering off about myself and like my story in the whole deal and stuff like that. But then again, I think the biggest thing in all of this on the entire process, the biggest thing is just to make them feel that they’re comfortable and also start establishing a connection between myself and the couple. And then if they decide to book me like I if location from it’s a guy, I invite them out to dinner. You know, I will. I grab either food or we’ll grab a drink or some. But then again, like, just like build that connection, and I do all that so that when I get to the wedding day, they’re like, Oh, Jordan’s here, you know, I just like I want to establish that kind of like friendship, you know, And and I think all the time that I spent getting to know them that gets implemented into their wedding film, you know.
Taylor: I love that. Yes, you know them so that you can edit it better.
Jordan: Exactly. You know, So, like, I know if if they like, like, cheesy stuff and Okay, cool. I’ll put like, a little cheesy element in there. They, you know, if, like, just whatever the case is like, I could be able to understand who they are. And then when it comes to their wedding film, that’s gonna influence the shocks that shoes is gonna influence the music that I pick the pacing of the film the whole deal so that when they see that film, they’re like, Wow, like that’s me. You know, I think that’s definitely the golden when it comes to creating my wedding films.
Taylor: Yeah, heavily personalized. No one likes to feel like they’re receiving a cookie cutter experience from somebody who doesn’t give a crap about that. Yeah. So doing whatever it takes to be the awesome sorted. Well, we’re gonna wrap up this episode, but if you want to give any last minutes, things toe list, mirrors, little tidbits or anything like that, now is the time.
Jordan: A little tidbit. Well, I will say, um, the biggest thing. And it’s like there’s so much like that that can be said, you know, on building a six figure business on doing this and doing that. But I think the number one thing that I can definitely recommend it’s just like being a student, you know? So whether it means like seat, like seeking out the information that you wanna you wanna have for your business, so what? That means you listen to this kind of this podcast or searching out. Other podcasts are searching out YouTube concert or going to in person workshops, things of that nature. I feel like there’s so much that can be said in the wedding industry, but there’s like again there’s so much content. So the number one thing I would say that I’m wanted, but it’s just like to be a student and, like seek out the information so they help you improve, and it’s gonna help you thrive in your wedding business, boomed. Drop them like that said I’m done.
Taylor: I love that, awesome. Jordan. Well, thank you so much for coming on the podcast.
Jordan: Thank you so much for having me.
I hope you guys enjoyed listening to my conversation with Jordan. I am going to give you a few key takeaways from this episode. But first I want to tell you where you can find Jordan. If you want to learn more about him and see some of his amazing work, you can find Jordan on Instagram @jeantystudios. I’m also going to go ahead and link his website below because after we stopped reporting, he told me that he just invested in some new branding for his website, which goes live today. So be sure to go check that out.
So some of the key takeaways from Jordan’s episode are that you should focus more on the quality of service that you provide for your couples over focusing on making as much money as you can focus on providing the best level of service you possibly can with your couples and genuinely forming connections with him as well. Like I said during the interview, Nobody likes to feel like they’re receiving a cookie cutter product from somebody who just doesn’t really care about them. So show that you’re emotionally invested in them in their wedding, and that’s gonna go a long way. And if you keep working on getting better at your craft and building those genuine connections with your couples in your business is going to go a lot farther than you probably think it ever could. If you are enjoying this podcast, I would love it if you would leave me a review wherever you’re listening. Those reviews go a long way in helping other filmmakers find the podcast, and it’s my hope that I can help as many people as possible and until next time friends just keep pushing forward.