I’m willing to bet photography is something you love doing. When you’re out photographing an engagement or family session, nothing is better than creating beautiful images for your clients. But the stress begins when the summer season shifts into winter and you’re left wondering: “Where will my next client come from?”
It’s the “business” in photography business that makes your head spin. You’re looking for ways to market your photography to bring new clients into your business, in the shortest amount of time! You don’t want to waste time on tasks that won’t bring you new work–you are busy enough, already. (I totally get it.)
10 Ways to Market Your Photography Business
#1 | Create Consistent Social Profiles
When someone stumbles upon your Instagram feed, they should think, “Wow! This photographer is talented! And professional!” Colour coordinate your story highlights, add an appropriate bio that shares who you are, what you do, and what action you want the visitor to take next. On Facebook, create a matching cover and profile photo and engaged regularly. (Want more Facebook Marketing Tips? Click here.)
#2 | Ask For Review!
A few weeks after delivering the gallery of images for every session/wedding, ask your clients for a review! Set up a Google Form to make this easy for your clients and ask specific questions like, “What was the best part about working with Jamie?” or “What would you say to someone who was on the fence about investing in their photography experience?”
Many clients are more than happy to provide a review, but life gets busy! By making a note to ask clients a few weeks post-session, you’ll start collecting amazing, consistent reviews. Next step? Sharing them! (Read more about collecting client testimonials here.)
#3 | The Buddy System
Search for two local photographers at a similar experience and price level as yourself and become “referral buddies!” Create a shared google calendar with your wedding bookings. When you receive an inquiry for a wedding date you’re already booked, write the bride back kindly with a raving review for the 2 other photographers. She’ll be thrilled you took the time to point her in the right direction!
#4 | Reach Out to Vendors
Write a personalized email to a wedding vendor you’d like to connect with and take the time to learn about their work online before you email! When you email, offer lunch (on you!) and complimentary headshots for their website and social media–this is a great way to build relationships and become known as a “helper” in your local industry! (More on marketing with vendors here!)
#5 | Become a Preferred Vendor
I say this one very carefully… but after you’ve built a relationship with venues and vendors over a stretch of time, it doesn’t hurt to ask be placed on the Preferred Vendor List. But please make sure it is after building rapport with the contact and supporting them in their business! Sometimes it’s a good reminder for venues to update their lists and they would happily include you.
(Read this related post: “Networking with Venues as a Photographer.“)
#6 | Use Videos
Video is incredible for helping prospective clients get to know, like and trust you! iPhone videos work fine! Of course, there’s Instagram stories as a casual way to connect with clients, but even more than that, try recording videos about the process of working together. Make a list of FAQ, then answer them one by one and have a YouTube playlist you could direct prospective clients to. (That’s a way to stand out from the rest!)
#7 | Rock Your About Page
We know you love photography and that you want to capture the client’s special memories. Instead, lead with your client’s problem or desire–what do specifically want from their photography experience? Are they looking for a fairytale wedding where everything is perfect? Or do they want a mountaintop adventure? Write to her, share how you’ll help her achieve her desire and then follow up with your accolades and a few fun facts about yourself.
(Ashlyn is the copywriting Queen: check out her article “7 Steps to Writing Your About Page.”)
#8 | Be Personable In Your Emails
A new wedding inquiry lands in your inbox (yay!) — what’s next? This is SO important! A client has taken the effort to email you. They like your work, something has connected with them and now you need to close the sale. We need to respond thoroughly & quickly in our email response.
We also need to show genuine interest in their wedding! Never lose sight of this fact: your email response back is *exciting* for the bride because it’s one more step in planning the wedding of her dreams. Tap into and share that excitement with her!
I also recommend asking open-ended questions. Don’t overwhelm her with a list, but I love to ask things like, “How did you hear about my work?” & “What are you most excited about on your wedding day?” Give them a reason to reply to you, this way!
Finally, include a ‘call to action,’ — a clear next step for them. I like to ask them to reply to set up a time to chat on the phone or on a FaceTime call. If you prefer in-person meetings, by all means, ask them to meet!
P.S. Purchase the exact email templates I use in my business, right here.
#9 | Display Your Prices
I recommend sharing a starting price for your services online–if clients have to search for what you charge, they may not take the time to email. Make it easy on them! You’re more likely to receive quality leads, and you’ll save yourself the trouble of answering emails from clients with wedding photography budgets between $500 and $10,000. (Want more pricing posts? Click here.)
#10 | Become a Guest Blogger
The more you can get your name “out there” online as a photographer, the more clients who will hear about your work! A great way to do this is blogging. There are 3 ways of looking at blogging I want to share: 1) writing helpful articles for brides-to-be, 2) featuring vendors on your blog, 3) submitting your work for publication to wedding blogs.
The biggest benefit to guest blogging is Search Engine Optimization: the more websites linking to your website, the easier your website/blog posts will be found by Google. If you can write an article called “5 Things to Know Before Your Engagement Session” and it’s published by a popular blog, they’ll likely link back to you, increasing your SEO power. Similarly, vendors featured on your blog have incentive to share your post–great for SEO! (And of course having your photography featured on a wedding blog is a) fun and b) also good for SEO.)
Looking for 40 more ideas to market your business?
Stop wasting your time on marketing tasks that aren’t bringing you any return. Instead, download and follow my list of 50+ marketing ideas for your photography business and build the business you know you can. 🙂