In the business of creatives, self-promotion is almost as much an art as the art form itself—in this case, we’re talking about photographers and how they can better market their business to attract the right audience. Fortunately, there are a lot of great ideas out there today to help you build your brand and promote your business, no matter what your goals might be for growth.
When it comes to promotion, sometimes it’s more about getting your name out there than actually offering a deal or “special” of any kind. Granted, those will always work in your favor, but they may not always be necessary. Here are nine ideas to get you started.
Social media sites like Facebook are a much better resource for marketing and promotions than most photographers realize. It’s not just about posting all the photos that you take. It’s about connecting with people and showcasing what you have to offer. Yes, share your work, but make sure that you promote your business, too. Use special occasions or days to promote certain specials or sales, or just invite people to mention your social media page for a discount on their photography services.
You’re a photographer. Of all the sites that you should belong to in the social media world, Pinterest is definitely at the top of the list. You should use it in multiple ways, too. Promote your own work because that will showcase what you can do. Then, create boards of your own inspiration, other photographers you like, or boards related to your niche (such as if you’re a family photographer, consider a board for family/home inspiration). Make it all shareable and encourage people to engage with your new platform to establish your reputation as an authority.
This is a great promotional marketing idea for retention. When you complete a session, give people a future discount or incentive to return. Alternatively, you could wait and remarket to them later, running a seasonal special or even calling it a customer appreciation event, to get more people interested and increase the likelihood of engagement and conversions.
If your local SEO is not in good shape, nothing you promote is going to make a difference. A lot of photographers skip this step, but it’s going to be invaluable in helping you market to your target audiences. Even freelancers and those who travel can still benefit and should ensure that their local SEO strategy is implemented and well-designed to help the business grow organically. Do your keyword research and make sure that you know which terms and phrases are going to generate the most results so that you can be ready for all the new traffic coming your way.
In professional photography, there’s often a disconnect in understanding between the prices of services between photographers and clients. Many people don’t understand “why photographers cost so much” or they just don’t get the intricate details of the job and therefore won’t want to spend a fortune. Of course, if you’re a smart businessperson, you’ve already figured this out and you’re offering top-rate service at a lower cost just to drive your competition away. Adding sales or discounts for new clients or even for returning clients is a great way to bolster your bottom line. As for what to “BOGO”, that’s all about figuring out what kind of incentive your audience would most appreciate.
In the creative world, word of mouth is a large part of marketing for any business or professional. Referrals should be a large part of your business. If they’re not yet, or if you just want to use them for promotions, consider offering a discount or special deal for people you refer you to their friends and family. For example, you could offer a 10% discount on their next session and give a 10% discount to the person who was referred, too. Just make sure it’s something valuable to your audience.
Photographers usually work locally, or at least regionally, and therefore can benefit from a lot of local marketing events like expos and trade shows. Wedding photographers should attend wedding expos, for example. You can also find small business shows and other events that could warrant attendance, either for promoting to customers or professional networking. Or, if you’re lucky, they may do both. In any case, these are events that you need to take advantage of for some cheap (or free) business promotion.
As a photographer, you probably handle a lot of the work on your own. Fortunately, there are tools available today to ensure that you don’t have to do it all. You can use automated marketing tools and resources to set up great marketing campaigns and manage everything for you so that your actual attention can stay focused on your clients and your business itself.
In addition to automated marketing, partnering with a team like the virtual receptionists at Smith.ai can help your photography business in several ways. After all, before you have this influx of new leads, you’ll want to assure that you have systems in place to handle them. When you choose a partnership with us, we’ll handle 24/7 phone calls, text messages, emails, and so forth. Plus, we can even handle the outreach campaigns and outbound sales to help you more in the first place.
We’ll create a tailored strategy to manage it all for you, no matter what you need, saving you time, effort, and money on things like scheduling, lead intake, and even payment collection and live website chat.
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