When it comes to starting a new photography business, it can be fun and nerve racking all at the same time. Often the excitement in being a professional photographer is enough to get anyone’s feet wet. However, the reality is that you need clients. And that isn’t always the easiest thing to do when you are first starting out.
Your first round of clients will often be friends and family. Even if they are for free, it is worth getting some initial portfolio together of everyone you’ve taken a photo for. From there, word of mouth may guide you along. However, without those initial few clients to help you spread the word, you may quickly hit a dry spell in booking more gigs. Before that happens, it helps to build up a repertoire of online avenues to help you book more photo sessions.
Get online with Facebook.
Step one should always start with social media. A Facebook page for your professional business can do wonders for you in many ways:
- You can show off your photos
- You can tag whoever the photos are of, furthering the reach of your photos as they like and share them. When their relatives comment, they spread even more.
- Potential clients can contact you directly.
- Your portfolio can live here free of charge.
Branch out with a website
A website will allow you to go in many other directions upon getting it set up. There are a lot of options when building a website (let me know if you need help doing so), but once you have one, you’ll be off to the races.
Your website will allow you to host your portfolio in a way that you can control and it allows potential leads to find you in a myriad of other ways.
A basic website will do with just a handful of pages.
- Home page
- Local area offerings (could be multiple pages – more on this later)
- Contact page
Setup paid advertising to your website
Once you have your website up, you can now direct some paid traffic to it. This sounds daunting and expensive, but even $100 a month can generate you plenty of qualified traffic. Google AdWords and PPC is a great way to get your website in the eyes of people who are looking exactly for the services you provide.
Search engine optimization
Each individual page on your website should be optimized for a certain topic or keyword. Obviously, a photographer might not want to rank for “wedding photography” in California if they live in New York, so optimizing your page for “wedding photography NY” would be ideal.
You can even get more granular than that! Often individual cities deserve to have their own pages as well. Even wedding photographers that are will to drive a few hours away from their base town might have several pages for the different cities 50-100 miles away. Take Symmetry Co for example. This company has pages that branch out to many local cities that are several counties away.
There are endless possibilities with marketing online for your photography business. Many start with some basic tools and websites and branch out from there. The trick is to put in the time. You may need to learn a little bit of SEO or how to use WordPress, but once it is set up, you will be glad you did. Any way your website can get across the right eyes, you will be that much closer to booking your next session for your new photography business.