Photography is a highly competitive industry. Marketing has changed drastically over the past few years. We’ve shifted from the traditional marketing model of sending out printed promotional pieces, buying ads in magazines and advertising on radio or television. The old promotional avenues are cost prohibitive and really no one is paying attention to them anymore.
Think about it. Today everyone has DVR, so they don’t have to view commercials. The advent of iPods has turned people away from the radio. No one has time to read the newspaper anymore so ads there are not going to bring you customers. Traditional avenues of reaching potential clients have dried up.
What has replaced those avenues is a whole new series of marketing channels.
Every professional now has a website. That is your calling card; the place people turn to make sure you are legitimate. A website is the most vital piece of your marketing puzzle. What else do you need?
Create a blog. A blog is essentially your voice. You can educate your clients, post new photos and include links to great information. More importantly, a blog creates an instant feeling of friendship. It draws people to you and your business. Creating content for your blog is another way to be found on the web. People will p ass your posts on to their friends cre ating a deeper and wider visibility for your company. A recent webinar on HubSpot, a web based company specializing in inbound marketing software, revealed that companies who blog have 55% more visitors to their websites. You don’t have to post every day. Post once a week, even once a month, but develop that presence. Have a look at WordPress or Blogspot and get started!
Facebook is a phenomenon. Never before has anything captured such universal, global attention. If you don’t have an account, get one. It’s important and it’s easy. Go to: http://tinyurl.com/2u5yd6 for the complete lowdown.
Social media is the new buzz term. It includes Facebook, Linked In, and a host of other outlets. One of the most influential of these is Twitter. Think about Twitter as the Readers Digest version of Facebook, without the quizzes! Short, sweet and to the point. Type in the keywords for your industry. Look at “wedding photographers in Dallas” (or your particular area) or “sports photographers in Houston”. If you are not showing up on the first page, then you need to Twitter! There is already a conversationabout your industry going on. Join that conversation.
LINK IT IN!
Linked In is probably the most seriously regarded of the social media. This is definitely a business resource. There are 48 million users. Executives from all the Fortune 500 companies are on Linked In. You can find and be introduced to the professionals you need to work with to accomplish your goals. It’s a terrific avenue to drive business back to your website. Take a look at this link, which includes a step-by-step video: http://learn.linkedin.com/what-is-linkedin/
Don’t let any of these new tools overwhelm you. The best news is that they are free. Decide how much time you can devote to social network marketing each week. It shouldn’t take up more than 10% of your time. Pour yourself a cup of coffee and get started!