Marketing is the key to our success. Marketing is a popularity contest and if you want to be found you must make yourself known! It isn’t about being in the field the longest, it isn’t about owning the PRO equipment, it’s about putting yourself out there on the world-wide web and maintaining a high ranking on the search engines!
I’ve said it before, no one uses a phonebook any more. We have phones, iPads, tablets and computers to quickly look up the companies that we want using the internet. Here are some ways to get noticed!
BLOGGING – it’s all the rave right now. It’s a journal into people’s lives, it’s a history of their business … it’s your avenue into this industry. Make a blog and start posting. Your posts should be relevant to your industry and they should be fun. The reason that blogging is such a great avenue into the WWW is because it is used by search engines. The words you use in your posts are relevant to your site and so you are gaining some height on the search ladders. Make sure you use the little “tag” option for each post you make and use tag words that your clients would use to find you on search engines. I always tag each post with the following … “Stacie Jensen Photography, Michigan Wedding Photographer, High Quality Photography, Family Photo Sessions, Engagement Photo’s, Portrait Photography, Rock My Edits, Rock My Photography”
You’ll build your audience as well as your portfolio by add a few photos from each session. Blogs are very easy to design because WordPress Templates/Themes are so readily available. This keeps prices down tremendously!
Blogging helps SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Blogs rank higher for SEO than websites. This is due to the fact that they are constantly updated with new content relative to the website.
FACEBOOK – Facebook is like your cellphone, we don’t always want it but we have to have it! You might be one of those people that frown upon this type of social networking but for business purposes it is completely a PLUS and even necessary. Facebooking can get you business and quickly. By posting a few sneak peeks of each session and tagging your clients in them you are advertising your company to thousands! It is important to keep it completely professional! If you have a business page you should interact with your fans and clients daily. Keep it fun and interesting. The hottest times to post are on week nights and best on Wednesdays. Do not let every post be about your business, make sure you also post interesting things that may be relative to your business or to your fans. Wednesdays are said to be the best day for a business ad post because it’s the middle of the week and people are more focused.
PHOTOGRAPHER NETWORKING: Networking can always help any company because we learn from others. There is no reason you should see networking as a company threat. If you meet the right people who are willing to share stories you will certainly gain knowledge at a faster pace than if you had to go through it all on your own. We at Rock My Photography are always willing to share and inspire. The purpose of this site was to provide a single source for photographers and help each other progress and prosper! Please visit the forum as well to speak with photographers all over the country. There are lots of things for us to all learn to better our business!
BECOME FRIENDS WITH LOCAL VENDORS: Make sure that your name is out there. You may have to do some pro bono work for those vendors but you will also gain their clientele if you make that friendship. For instance, if you are in the wedding photography business, meet with a local cake shop and ask that you trade photos for advertising in their shop. They probably would love to get free photos of their cakes for website/facebook/blog etc and in return you ask that they have a stack of your business cards available. Tip: This also gives you great experience photographing objects rather than just people.
The more helpful you can be the more likely they will be willing to share marketing opportunities.
TWITTER: Twitter works just like Facebook and is very popular. Make an account and update it each time you make a new blog post. To get followers just follow others, most will reciprocate it. I will be your follower, just find me at https://twitter.com/#!/RockMyPhoto
GUEST BLOG: Find vendors for your photography industry and ask if they need any guest blogs. It’s a great place to get your name out and a reciprocal link to your website/blog/facebook/twitter.
EMAIL: Add your links to your signature line of your emails! This is important and should be done quickly. Here is mine, feel free to use it as a guide to make yours:
STACIE JENSEN PHOTOGRAPHY, LLC & ROCK MY EDITS STORE
GET TESTIMONIALS FROM YOUR PREVIOUS CLIENTS: Each positive review you have on your website/blog is one more reason for someone to book you. I ask each client to answer a few questions for me that I am going to add to their “special blog post” that they then share with their friends and family who want to see more photos, along with their review. Advertising baby! Here is an example: http://www.staciejensenphotography.com/2012/04/01/maddie-howell-portrait-photographer/
REFERRAL REWARDS: Word of mouth is the best type of advertising because clients are very excited to express their experience as your customer. Reward your clients with an incentive to come back. For instance you can give referral cards to your client with the agreement they will receive incentive for any friends and family that book with you and bring the card to their sitting. Tip: The referrer can receive $25 off their next session and the new client can receive 8 FREE wallets. This makes everyone a winner!
LAST BUT NOT LEAST – DO IT! – Without jumping into an aggressive marketing campaign you won’t get the results! It doesn’t happen if you don’t put the time in. Not every avenue will work but the object is that you keep trying all your options!