Marketing a photography business is challenging. You are already busy with photography sessions, keeping in touch with clients, and anything else your life has to offer, do you really have time to market your business?
Regardless of whether you have it or not, you need to market your photography business.
It is the only way to really continue spreading the word, getting new clients, and growing. Without marketing or advertising you may run out of clients, and worse yet, have to stop following your passion!
In this post I’m going to give you a bunch of great sites I found for marketing a photography business.
Website and Portfolio
When starting out, a website may seem unnecessary. However; it is a fantastic way to showcase your various photography works, attract new local clients, and direct current clients.
Here is what I recommend as a bare bones for starting your site.
- A home page with some information about yourself, a few of your photos, and possibly a testimonial.
- A portfolio where you work can be looked through and sorted.
- A contact page where clients can book photography sessions.
That is pretty simple and can be expanded, but is a great start and is all of the basic stuff necessary to really get going.
These are some of my favorite photography portfolios.
Keep in mind that the portfolios featured above are from very established photographers. Your portfolio isn’t going to look as filled out and well done at first, but thats OK. Focus on what you can do, and work from there.
Portfolio Showcase Sites
Similar to your own portfolio, the internet offers a ton of awesome sites for you to showcase your photos, link to your site, and build up a small, or huge, following.
These aren’t a replacement for your own photography portfolio, but rather should supplement it.
More places on the web = more backlinks, more exposure for your work, and a larger audience.
In each of these sites they give you the opportunity to show your style, open your work up to newer audiences, and link back to your site.
Possibly the largest photography community on the web, Flickr is the home of thousands if not millions of professional and amateur photographers. On the site you can showcase your work and submit it to relevant groups/galleries.
You also have a profile where you can share some info about yourself, your style, and your photography.
The thing I most like about Flickr is the amount of amazing photographers on the site. It makes is so easy to meet and connect with other talented creative people in your area, or all over the world.
Behance is another fantastic place to share your work. It is a site used by millions of creatives, and not just in the design and photography industry.
On the site you can find fashion designers, architects, interior designers, entrepreneurs, and a whole variety of other creative people.
It is excellent for sharing your photography, a small bio about yourself, and linking back to your site/portfolio.
500px, labeled the premiere photography community is a gorgeous site with some of the most amazing photography on the web.
With the site you can license your photos for purchase, and even sell prints. So if that is a part of your business, I definitely suggest using this site.
See the trend starting to develop here? All of these sites tie in wonderfully to your own site, and can drive quality traffic back to your business. Remember to link back to your portfolio/website.
Social media is by far one of the best ways to connect, 1-to-1, with customers. You can hold conversations, answer questions, and share some client work.
Here are some of the best sites and uses for them that I have seen by photographers.
Facebook is one of the best social networks for a photographer to showcase their work and their photography business.
Here are the benefits of Facebook.
- Showcase your work, location, style, and links to your site/portfolio.
- Attract a following of customers who will be reminded of you every time they see your new posts.
- Share images with calls-to-action, like the one above, to remind people of your services.
- Connect with new customers through the friends of your fans.
Those are just a few of the immense benefits, Facebook has to offer. If you only have time for one social network when marketing your photography business, make it Facebook.
Twitter has improved a ton in the past few years, especially as it relates to photography. It is now much easier to share images and tweets with your fans.
Twitter is not nearly as beneficial for a local photography shop as Facebook, but it has potential.
Here are the benefits of Twitter.
- Grow a following for your photography, blog, and brand.
- Connect personally with customers and have a conversation with them.
- Meet and follow other fantastic photographers and inspiration sources.
This article does a great job of showing why photographers should love Twitter.
Pinterest is one of the fastest growing sites in the social networking space and is fantastic for photo based services, products, and blogs.
BUT, it is not going to get you clients. Let me repeat that, Pinterest won’t get you new clients.
Pinterest is a social network where various people create boards of products they love, inspiration things, and other topics. It isn’t a site where people look for service based jobs.
However; photographers can still use Pinterest, for other reasons.
- Create boards for inspiration, photography session ideas, and other aspects of your business.
- Have a blog? Drive traffic to your blog posts and expand your audience there.
- Meet other photographers, get new ideas for your own business, and network.
Not all sites are going to drive new clients, but they can help you in other ways. It is important to keep an open mind to all methods of growing your business, not just the ones that drive new clients.
Instagram is fantastic for getting attention to your work. You can build a following, connect with brands for advertising opportunities, and potentially land new clients.
Here are some quick tips for photographers using Instagram.
- Upload your best photography works and everyday photos, don’t make it too serious, and show your personality.
- Connect with your followers in the comments, and follow/engage with other accounts.
- Tag your photos with relevant hashtags.
Great article here for Building a Massive Following on Instagram.
Blogging & Writing
Do you want to establish yourself as a leader in the photography field? Start writing.
That is the way to establish yourself as a leading professional in the photography business, and to attract a following of photographers and other creative people.
Here are some of my favorite blogs from photographers.
Jamie is a professional photographer, but she is also one of the best photography bloggers I’ve ever found.
Jamie branded herself as a leader in teaching other photographers how to grow their business, and because of that she is able to grow her own business and become an industry leader.
Basically if you want to learn anything about lighting as it relates to photography, Strobist is the blog to read.
David branded himself as a leader in the lighting portion of photography and was able to build an audience teaching photographers how to light their works.
Create a name for yourself and your photography business by blogging about what you now. Share your experiences, lessons learned, and tips/tricks you’ve come to understand.
Marketing a photography business is no easy feat, but I hope this post will help you get started.
What ways have you found to be most successful in marketing your photography business? Comment some of your favorite marketing tips/tricks.