Marketing is challenging no matter the business, and it can actually be tougher when it comes to a photography business.
The reason for this is the non-commercial interest that sometimes comes into the picture when we talk of photographs that adorn walls.
However, you shouldn’t despair since it is still possible to make your photography business a highly marketable product or service. If you follow the simple rules below, you will be on the right track.
- 1 1. Decide What Your Photography Business Will Be Like
- 2 2. Identify Your Target Audience
- 3 3. Give Them Exactly What They Want
- 4 4. Be Present at the Places That Matter
- 5 5. Accept Help from Your Peers
- 6 6. Quality Has No Replacement
- 7 Final Thoughts
1. Decide What Your Photography Business Will Be Like
You can set up two kinds of photography businesses: Stock photography or Assignment photography. In both cases, the name is pretty much self-explanatory.
Assignment photography refers to a kind of business where you are hired or assigned to take photographs of something. It can be any event or just a person. The event could be somebody’s wedding, and that person could be just about anybody.
On the other hand, stock photography refers to a business where you already have the photographs in stock and are selling them to any interested parties. Stock photos can be of any subject, from nude women to flowers.
You, therefore, have two options to choose from. People typically start out with assignment photography under the assumption that they would earn a meager but steady income.
While this might be true to a certain extent, the reality is that it will give you access to just a small audience.
Conversely, a stock photography business can help you reach a much wider target market audience. Therefore, stock photography is highly recommended since it is where a potential photographer has a higher chance of being recognized.
2. Identify Your Target Audience
When dealing with stock photography, you will most likely spend a lot of resources without seeing any returns. This is particularly true if you don’t know who the audience is. When heading out to capture those beautiful moments, ensure that you know exactly who you will show them to.
It is an important step for streamlining your clients and will also ensure that you take photos that are relevant to your market. You can try sending samples of your photos or even print out postcards for your target clients and see just how they respond. That way, you can make your mark among those you would like to feel your presence.
3. Give Them Exactly What They Want
When you present your customer’s photos, ensure that you give them exactly what they asked for. You might be surprised to learn that many photographers don’t. It is, however, still important.
Clients have selected you since they believed that you would deliver what they wanted. If you don’t give them the photos they need, you can be sure of losing them.
So, it would help if you always were attentive to the details and consistently delivered what your customers asked for. Take notes when they are describing what they want.
People hardly ever remember more than 7 percent of what they have been told in a conversation just 24 hours later, which is why note-taking is so important. Happy customers translate to more business.
4. Be Present at the Places That Matter
Being present doesn’t mean the photographer’s physical presence. Rather, it refers to the exposure of your work. Advertise your work whenever you have the opportunity to do it as long as it is relevant.
Keep your costs in line since advertising can quickly get out of hand. Always make it a point to advertise in the right locations.
Publish your work online through some of the photography websites or stock photo platforms. It can be a great way to increase your client base since your photographs are showcased along with others.
The websites may take a portion of your earnings, but it’s worth it since you are simply building your base while still getting paid in the process. You can always set out on your own after you have a considerable presence in the right circles.
To Have an Online Presence:
- Build a website and drive traffic to it
- Advertise on Google Ads
To Have an Offline Presence:
- Join the local library that may publish your photos in their weekly or monthly newsletter, ezine, or journal. Always make sure that your contact details are always provided. That way, you will get a foothold in your own locality.
- Visit your local florist and leave them some business cards and the promise of a tip if they successfully refer work to you.
- Visit your local church, mosque, etc. and leave your particulars. You never know when your services will be required in such locations. Reciprocate with some free services every once in a while.
You can also find many other venues similar to the above where you can showcase your work. All you have to do is put on your thinking hat.
5. Accept Help from Your Peers
Knowing other photographers can be incredibly helpful. If they are good enough, they can show some of your collections to their own clients who might have specific requirements.
Even if they don’t showcase your work, they can still give you valuable tips to market your business as well as networking ideas.
6. Quality Has No Replacement
No matter how hard you market your photography business, if the quality of your work isn’t up to the mark, you definitely won’t be successful.
The quality of your photos should be the best that you can possibly present, and always remember that there’s always room for improvement.
Quality almost always results in a referral and recommendation. Once you have a customer, you must never skimp on the quality since finding a new customer is always costlier than retaining your existing one.
Photography business marketing is usually a case where your photos have to be in the right place at the right time. So never assume that it is all by chance.
The reality, however, is that it is up to you to avail them at the right place and at the right time by following a few simple marketing rules and tips such as those discussed here. All the best and happy marketing!
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