Photographers usually work freelance. As a result, it never hurts to have a continuing stream of clients for your business. If there’s one thing you can never get enough of, it’s more clients. That begs the question, how do you snag more of them?
It all stars and ends with marketing. Far too many photographers don’t think the extra step into really selling their services. They think that their amateur or professional career simply revolves around the shutter button, but that won’t pay the bills, nor will it expand your photography brand to bigger and better jobs and projects.
If you’ve never thought hard about how you can expand and grow your photography business, read the following and learn how you can start getting more photography clients for your business today!
Get a Website for Your Portfolio
Getting new clients is based on you being able to showcase your past work. That means a shiny portfolio, and these days, a shiny portfolio lives on the web in the form of your professional website. If you’re a photographer and still don’t have your own site, then drop everything and create one (or have one built for you!) right now. It’s that important to your success.
People are visual creatures, and you operate in a visual medium of photography, so having a site where you can display all of your best shots is key to getting more clients. Leads want to see what you’ve shot in the past to roughly determine what you can shoot if they hire you. Don’t disappoint them.
Photo by alibosworth
Since a site is essential to any photographer, just remember that a photographer without his own spiffy portfolio site is like Batman without the Batmobile.
Another great benefit of having your own portfolio site is that you can create various pages on it. One page that you should create right off the bat and continually update is your blog, for a variety of reasons.
First of all, a blog will position you as an expert in your field, thereby helping to persuade leads to choose your services. Think of this: You know your way around, let’s say, landscape photography, and you continually blog about the best practices of how photographers can always shoot masterful landscapes. If your content is high-quality enough—as in providing tips and tricks people can’t get anywhere else or a point of view they can’t read anywhere else—that’ll increase your blog’s buzz.
Photo by @boetter
The best part about photography blogging is that you don’t need to spend much money, thanks to sites like WordPress. Further, constantly blogging lets Google know that you always have fresh content on your site, which helps with SEO, as Google ranks sites higher that have active and high-quality content. Of course, the higher your site ranks for your keyword…the more people will find you!
Offer a Special Deal or a Promotion
If there’s one thing that people like, it’s a special deal or a promotion—basically, something where they feel that they’re getting something extra that they normally wouldn’t. Let’s say you’re a wedding photographer. A great idea for a special promotion could be 15% off your regular rate if your client books you for the whole day instead of just the actual wedding and reception.
Whatever special deal you can think of to offer your clients, know that leads will respond because anything that temporarily lowers your prices is attractive to potential clients.
Photo by Brandon Schuster
If you have a website, a great way to announce a special deal would be through an email newsletter, long regarded as one of the best marketing tools out there. (Sign up for our email newsletter here for freebies and discounts!)
Build up Your Brand on Social Media
Since photography is all about the visuals, you’ll catch the attention of potential leads on social media sites that are heavily geared towards everything visual. That would be Instagram and Pinterest, two social networks where reading and writing take a backseat to images.
Much has been written about using Instagram to market your photography, as an example. Owned by Facebook, the site isn’t just a no-brainer because it caters to images very nicely; it also offers massive exposure with approximately 150 million or so users. Want to make an impression on potential clients? Why don’t you tag them in your Instagram posts? Oh, and want to tie in the whole blog aspect of finding clients? Just share any images from your blog in Instagram, mentioning “link to profile” in the caption (this’ll point them to your blog!).
Photo by Jason A. Howie
Pinterest, too, is a potential goldmine for photography marketing. Due to its card-based design approach, you have the chance to:
- Create boards that solve problems for clients (like wedding-photography tips)
- Holding contests on Pinterest that relate to your site and photography
- Pin cards with info about your photography product/service and its prices in the description
Give Away a Free Photo Session
Think of this as community outreach with a slice of marketing on the side! Giving away a free session of your photography services—maybe it’s a free portrait you can shoot or even a gratis class you can teach—is an excellent way of making inroads with leads. Of course, you don’t want to give away too many of these sessions because you still want to maintain a semblance of scarcity in your brand.
Photo by Ammar Al-Fouzan
See if a local church, community center or school has a fundraiser, where lending your services would be an ideal prize. The person who wins the free session can potentially be a powerful source of word-of-mouth marketing for your brand as well, provided you do a bang-up job.
You Can Never Have Enough Clients
Photographers aren’t typically employed in a safe, nine-to-five job. So what do they have to do? Constantly market themselves, as most freelancers have to! With the above tips, you can expect to see solid results as you put your name out into the community and the web, which creates more buzz for your brand.
Start off with having a functional and attractive website—and the marketing doors will open wider from there. The more clients you get, the more they’ll also do the marketing for you in a compounding effect by telling their friends and family, as you do a good job for them.