We’re all photographers because we love taking pictures. Photography is an art, but making money at photography is an art form in itself and that’s where marketing comes in. It may be the other most important part of your business aside from the photography itself. Without the marketing you have no one to take photos of!
My approach to marketing is to not have to spend money to do it. I get offers from bridal magazines all the time to pay only $1000 for a business card sized ad next to a bunch of other photographer’s ads. Only $1000 right? If I’m going to spend that kind of money I want to see it pay off and I just don’t see how a magazine ad next to a bunch of other photography ads will pay off. I think I should be able to market for free the majority of the time and there are tons and tons of ways to do this. Sometimes it takes a bit of time, and a few supplies (business cards), but there are lots of great ways you can market that won’t cost you the equivalent of that new lens you want to buy.
There are 2 ways I market that bring me all of my business in photography. I do one bridal festival show a year and other than that I use social media. That one bridal show I do pay for, but it always pays off. If I’m going to pay to advertise I have to be able to meet the potential clients in person. That’s one of my rules for myself!
Social media is what brings in a lot of referrals and the majority of my clients come through Facebook. I know it seems crazy, but with a little work you’ll be able to use it to your advantage – even despite that promotion option on your business pages!
The number one rule to photography marketing though isn’t to market your services, discounts, sales or deals, it’s to market yourself. Every photographer has a nice camera, some photography skills or talent, and similar prices. The only thing that truly makes you different from everyone else is you. When people hire you they want to hire someone they truly love to work with for all their big life events!
Marketing yourself means being yourself. Use Facebook to be funny, be interesting, and interact with your clients. Letting your clients learn about you personally will make them feel like they can trust and relate to you and this is an important part of utilizing social media to market for any business. People want to learn about you, not your daily sales or discounts.
Over the next week I’ll be talking a lot about marketing, social media and more to prep us all for next week’s marketing class! Next Monday evening I’m having a live online Photography Marketing class. We’re going to talk about all of this stuff in depth. If you can’t make it to the live class, you can still reserve your seat and watch the recording later! The class is only $15. Most of it we’re going to learn all about the free options for marketing and how to use them to your best ability. I’ll talk a little bit about doing bridal shows, or children’s festivals and having booths there and how to market in person too.
You can >register< for the class at the link. Spaces are limited and the marketing class fills up super fast, but it’s a great opportunity to learn a lot and to be able to ask me questions live about how some of these marketing techniques might apply to you directly.