Photography startup are a dime a dozen. What most pro photographers starting their own business don’t realize, though, is that actually running a successful business is just as important, if not more so, than the quality of the work itself. It is very important to establish a solid branding and following for your photography startup sooner rather than later, so the following list was put together by the good folks at Designhill to help photography businesses do just that.
Play Up Your Uniqueness
I have learned firsthand that a lot of people, even some of those who enjoy photography, think that photographers are opportunists and that photography is just a game of being in the right place at the right time. Although this is a complete misconception, it is important to show your audience that you do not just point your camera at eye-catching scenes and try to take a shot that looks generally aesthetically pleasing. Of course, producing photos that are aesthetically pleasing is part of it, but a good photography company should also have its own unique style that makes its work stand out. For example, maybe your studio’s photos instill edginess or sedateness. Maybe they use interesting angles or creative filters. The point is that your studio’s work should be distinct enough to where it can be identified when it is put in an anonymous line-up of photos. And once you have found your studio’s unique flavor, let the world know! They need to see you are unique and you are not like the droves of wannabe pro photographers who just take pictures of vaguely pretty stuff. On your site and in any contact you have with your target audience, put into words exactly what it is you can bring them that other photographers can’t.
Build a Thriving Blog Community
Blogging is a revolutionary form of marketing that has really taken hold in the past few years. Since people spend most of their free time on the internet nowadays, they are happy to read interesting blog content. Creating captivating, personable, and well-written content is not easy (and that is a topic for another entry), but the reward it will yield are extremely high. A quality blog will attract huge numbers of web-users who are interested in the area you specialize in, and that means potential customers. By reading consistently interesting posts, they will develop an affinity for your brand and will not hesitate to spread that love on social media outlets, taking care of a lot of important networking for you. If your blog has a decent following, you can engage your followers and the friends they attracted in more interactive content, as well. This includes contests, competitions, forums, and other crowd sourcing activities that will further brand engagement and increase customer loyalty. Offering free gifts as an incentive to share content from the blog/forum is another great way to expand your online web of influence. After a while, you will even be able to take your interactions offline to truly establish a deep bond with customers and guarantee business.
Take Advantage of Social Media
As social media’s influence has even spread to the areas under rocks by now, we are confident that you are already aware of its absolutely gargantuan power to connect people around the word. Not only that, but people love to share anything that holds even the smallest amount of interest with their friends on such sites. To a marketer, social media’s power to easily harness the power of human connection, as well as the fact that it’s free, make it an invaluable tool for spreading the word of your business. By building a social media page that conveys brand identity, gaining just a few followers, and encouraging your followers to spread word of the business (this can be done by sharing interesting or winning content, such as blog entries or contests), you can spark a snowball effect that will garner more public enthusiasm for your business than you expect. For no money, social media will provide you with virtually unlimited amounts of word-of-mouth exposure that will lead back to your startup’s page.
Although several of the most important tips for establishing a following and image for your photography startup are listed above, it is a nuanced art. Play to your strengths; it’s your business, after all! It may also help to employ a service like Graphic Design by Designhill to help you add some expert visual flair to your initial grab for customers.
After finding the customers and winning over their loyalty, the fun part begins: producing high-quality and recognizable photography. Don’t get ahead of yourself, though, and make sure to pace yourself in the steps of building your business.