If you have a good grasp and understanding of marketing or advertising, there is one word that has dominated debate for the last few years: CONTENT. It continues to dominate because the advance of digital communication means that there are now a multitude of ways and times to reach the consumer. This demands myriad forms of content and stories to tie it all together and should reflect your marketing output.
Luckily, as a photographer, your very output is content. Photographs, images, videos are content to be shared, discussed and pored over. You have the means by which to communicate your business and skills ready to go. So how best to do this?
Along with your business planning and sales strategy, it’s vital to be realistic about what you can and cannot do with the time and resources available to you.
Figuring out what you want to achieve, who you want to target, where to do it- it all comes back to those S.M.A.R.T. objectives.
- The Who, What, Where, When, How. If you are doing your business planning correctly, these things should already be coming up as part of your overall strategy. The reason you are a photographer is because you enjoy taking images of certain subjects. Do these subjects adhere to a certain market or does your photographic style suit a certain setting? When you’ve defined this you can then figure out where to target your efforts.
- If you write a blog on your website (and this is great for SEO) or use social media channels, you hope it appeals to as many people as possible. You know that if your photography is good then it will be bought, and the same is true of the content you put out there. Make it good, and make it count.
- You only have so much time to think up marketing materials, produce them, get them into the right places (on or offline); only so much budget to put towards doing all this. Don’t spend so much time doing these things and forgetting your raison d’etre.
Given the squeeze on resources and time, this can work as a positive. Marketing (and sales) is as much about opportunity and timing as it is about planning and process. Being small and agile means you can be very reactive to providing an instant pitch or creating the right product for an event to catch the mood.
- Seasonal work. In England, obviously there is far more outdoor event activity in the spring and summer months. However obstacle course events and challenging terrain competitions are increasing in popularity in winter months – a niche worth exploring particularly with that unique winter morning light.
- Unusual wedding locations. Again something gaining more mainstream popularity and perhaps an opportunity to act as a conduit and leader.
As a photographer you are creative by nature, be creative with your marketing too and reap the rewards.