If you are stuck in the same old rut, wondering what all the buzz is about social media and online marketing, then this article is for you.
It’s not that you need to use social media and online marketing to grow your business – it’s that you need to be aware of the various platforms and how to use them to their full potential.
With the right information, tools, and strategies, you can grow an online business that serves your local community and draws in customers from around the world.
Here are 10 things you need to know about sales and marketing online for photographers.
1. Be Unique
With so much competition, it’s essential to stand out from the crowd. For photographers, being unique means presenting your brand’s voice, story, and imagery in a way that doesn’t always follow the norm. To do this, you need to find your individual style and stick to it. Don’t worry, you don’t need to be a designer to accomplish this – your everyday, working photographer’s camera is your weapon. You just need to find the right inspiration and use your skills to bring your style to life.
The internet is full of inspiration for your next photo shoot. Whether you want to create a historical scene or want to experiment with lighting, there’s something out there to suit your style.
2. Have a Purpose
Another important factor to consider when marketing your business online is your target audience. Just because you can market to the entire world doesn’t mean you should. In most cases, you only need to reach a small handful of people to get the results you’re looking for. Having a clear purpose means you can have a clear idea of who you’re trying to reach and what you’re trying to offer them. This in turn will make your marketing efforts more effective and efficient.
For example, say you’re a fashion photographer. Your purpose could be to showcase the latest trends in a comfortable and approachable way. Or, you could focus on creating a sense of nostalgia in your images – evoking past trends and reflecting on our cultural history.
3. Always Be Marketing
You might be used to thinking of marketing and sales as two separate entities, but they’re actually parts of the same process. In order to grow your business and make the most of your efforts, you need to be continually thinking about marketing. Instead of just relying on social media to get your message out there, you can take advantage of digital and offline marketing to spread the word about your business. Having a constant flow of content marketing is crucial to keep your audience interested and involved, as well as demonstrating your expertise.
4. Measure the Results of Your Marketing
In the same way you would measure the results of a marketing campaign in traditional media, you need to measure the results of your online marketing efforts. A common pitfall for photographers is to get so absorbed in the technicalities of photography that they forget to measure the results of their work. By measuring the results of your efforts, you can determine if you’re making the right strategic decisions to grow your business and determine the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns. The key is to remember that while measurements don’t lie, people can and often do!
5. Social Media is Key to Marketing
With the rise of digital media and the internet, the way we communicate and the way we consume content is changing. In the past, we might have turned to television or magazines to learn about new products and trends. Now, with the click of a button, we can learn about anything and be connected to people with shared interests.
The internet provides an opportunity for businesses to connect with their customers and grow their reach. By incorporating social media platforms into your marketing efforts, you can reach a larger audience than you ever could with individual marketing campaigns on Facebook or Instagram. When utilized properly, social media can bring in customers from across the globe, as well as encourage word of mouth marketing and recommendation websites like Yelp and Google+.
6. Content is King (or Queen)
Whether you’re a blogger or an Instagrammer, content is key to any successful online marketing campaign. If you’ve got valuable information or images that you think people will want to learn or see, then don’t hesitate to put out there.
As we’ve established, social media is important, but it’s not the only place you need to be putting out content. In addition to social media, you can create content for your website, email list, and even your print materials. While many photographers get hung up on the idea of having a presence on all platforms, it’s not necessary – you can have one website, for example, and use social media to connect with your audience and promote your content. As long as you keep producing valuable content that encourages people to come back for more, you’ll be able to utilize the various platforms to the best of your abilities.
7. Mobile Marketing is Important
If you’ve got a cellphone, you’ve probably already accepted the fact that mobile marketing is a must. As our world becomes more and more digital, the number of people accessing the internet via mobile device increases each year. In 2025, over 45% of the world’s population will be using a smartphone (Statista).
You can take advantage of this growing audience by incorporating mobile marketing into your campaign strategy. To best utilize mobile marketing, you need to have a presence on all the major platforms – Google, Facebook, and Twitter. In 2020, over 60% of web traffic came from cell phones (Statista). With so many people on the go, on their phones 24/7, you can bet that mobile marketing is going to be important.
8. Location Is Everything
If you’re located in one place (i.e. a physical space), you can take advantage of the fact that your potential customers are mostly within reach. Your location can limit your audience; you may not be able to reach certain people if you’re not in their city, and you can’t promote your products or services in other places. Luckily, technology has provided us with the ability to target specific locations for online marketing. Through the use of geolocation tools and APIs, you can pinpoint your location and zoom in or out to see exactly who you’re marketing to. Take advantage of this and target your marketing to people in your own city as well as people in nearby cities.
9. Create Multiple Channels
If you’ve got an established business with a lot of popularity, you don’t need to worry about having enough customers to keep up with. However, this is mostly an issue for newer businesses. With so much competition, it’s essential to have several channels – both digital and traditional – that you can utilize to reach your audience. Having a presence on all the major social media platforms is crucial to do this. As well as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, consider including LinkedIn, YouTube, and even Reddit.
The various platforms are here to provide you with multiple ways to engage with your audience. For example, Instagram offers you the ability to connect with your customers via your website and email, while Pinterest allows you to create professional looking blogs that you can use to attract potential customers.
10. Be Confident
While it’s important to be unique and find your voice, it’s also important not to be arrogant or overbearing. People can sense when an overbearing or arrogant business stifles creativity, creativity that could be used to foster more customer relationships.
Customers are attracted to businesses that they perceive as authentic and confident. When you establish and communicate a confident and authentic brand identity, this can be a powerful tool in your marketing arsenal. Additionally, when you project an image of confidence, this can increase your credibility with customers, even if you aren’t actually confident in your products or services. Having a business address on your website, along with a contact phone number, is an example of displaying an image of confidence. If you aren’t sure how to do this, ask a professional marketing consultant to help.