Online Marketing is difficult at the best of times and being a photographer generally makes it harder!
Let’s see, I’m guessing you’re a small business, potentially it’s just you trying to balance the books, go on site, book jobs, assist clients, advertise wisely, save cash and that’s just Mondays!
So let’s look at some easy ways you can attack Online advertising easily and the right way for your industry.
Tip 1: Your Landing Page
First and foremost you need a good landing page for your website, one that is clear, encourages people to call you and is informative
- Flash Websites – Learn Restraint! The biggest mistake that photographers make is having websites made completely in Flash. While it’s pretty, Google can’t read it well, and it’s really not worth the cash if you’re not going to show on Google.
- Function Over Fashion – A website is a tool for acquiring business, not an awards show. While potential clients will need to see some of your past work, this isn’t as important as your pricing, location, contact details, and special services. Put a few of your favorite photographs on the front page, but leave the full portfolio to a separate page.
- Pricing & Packages – They need to be mentioned on first page. Clients are thrifty and need to see a price to see if you’re in their ball park budget. Truthfully, it is rare a bride will break budget on a photographer when she still has a dress to buy!
- Your Location – especially if you work in a certain area needs to be clear on your front page. NO point getting her excited about your work if you won’t come to her suburb.
- Your Phone Number – Preferably a number that someone will answer.
- Any accolades, clear but not in the centre of the page! Show off what you’ve achieved but again this is not what finalises a sale.
- Have your website created by a company who will optimise your website – make sure the content is relevant and your source page contains the right things for Google to rank you well.
- Have a basic blurb about your business, experience and what you can do for your client, not your life story, you can tell them that at initial consultation. The Client is the priority, and they feel this way, so your website should be about them.
- We know you want the best for your clients, and the best to represent your business: Music, flashing pictures, time, links to games, & ad’s are a personal taste and you don’t want to put someone off simply because they don’t like new age country music.
Tip 2: Pay-Per-Click Advertising
Advertising online can work for your industry if you come at it the right way
- Be comfortable with your Keyword Quantity, opt for the less is more theory with how many keywords you have, be prepared to bid high, and make sure every keyword is running.
- Photography is a huge industry and so many people come at it the same way – weddings, families, models. Step outside the box, pick a niche, beach wedding photographer, or asian wedding photographer. By appealing to a sideline of the market, your advertising will cost you less, & no one else is a specialist in their advertising (like you can be) and you can create an amazing flow of clients this way.
- Write your ads with ‘Call To Action’, people use this for a reason – IT WORKS! Call now, check out our website, book now for 5% off – anything to encourage a client to call is important. You may think it cheapens your business but believe me, if the phone is ringing you’ll appreciate it all the more!
- Don’t be afraid to mention prices in the ad, again drawing clients who are budget driven.
- Do use Negative Keywords in your campaign, don’t know what this is: it’s a list to stop people seeing your ad’s who may not be new clients. For example if you only work in the CBD, put negatives of the suburbs you don’t work in.
- Don’t be afraid to raise your budget and bids in peak times, Sat mornings, Monday – Wednesday nights.
Tip 3: Contactability
People will look elsewhere while they wait for you to get in touch
- Your Phone Number needs to be a local number or a 1300 number. A mobile is just not reliable, also choose a number that someone will answer – If you can’t answer it, send your calls through to a message service! Otherwise your client will keep researching and find someone else before you call back.
- Your Email – try to establish a professional email, not Gmail or Hotmail. You want to appear professional and established.
- We don’t need your address or PO Box in your website either!
- Try to have your email routed through your phone so you can call people back straight away, and maybe even have a quick ‘contact us’ box on the landing page to enable clients to email you with ease. This should only be done if you can respond within ½ an hour, as sometimes that’s all it takes for them to find another photographer.
- Answering your phone professionally is also important, if you’re at the beach with dog, or in a child care centre, no one wants to bother you so a client doesn’t feel like they have your full attention. Just walk somewhere quiet and call back.
Tip 4: Conversion Tracking
You need to track where those calls are coming from, its important so you know what is working for you
- Phone: either install a conversion tracking Number into your website, which can be easily done through companies like ours, so you can see where the calls come from, what areas geographically, and even from what form of advertising! Every new client is a little gem, full of information about where there could be 100’s of new clients waiting to find you, you need to know where your presence is working, be in TV/Print/Adwords or Word Of Mouth. Also ASK! At the very least you need to ask every caller where they found you.
- Your Adwords, Get Analytics sorted out your website, this is an imperative tool that allows you to see if people are staying on your site, where online are they coming from, and it helps you to see again where is best for your advertising cash!
- Goal setting in Google Analytics or Conversion tracking: These are two forms of triggered tasks we use to see when a sale is made, or an email sent through, or a contact slip if sent through, we can then see if that call/email has been sent through a click that came from AdWords.
Tip 5: Be Organised!
A disorganized plan will never work, you need to take time and effort and decide how you are going to attack your marketing.
- Online can work for you but you need to be prepared both mentally and financially for some failures to ensue, and to give things time to work.
- Have some other fall back options to get you through these times.
- Attend and have stalls at wedding expo’s, approach Parents and Friends associations with a special deal for family portraits, establish time specific packages – xmas photo’s, winter pics, school formal time. Maybe even connect with wedding planners, event planners and sort out deals for their clients. Establish rewards for referral clients.
- Be prepared to travel if the Job rewards out weigh the cost – especially at the beginning of your business.
You and I both know that a lot of these things, you have tried already. But the last thing you should always consider is what would you do if you were looking for a photographer, what would you want from someone you were trusting your special day to, your memories and your cash. This generally always guides you in the right direction, if in doubt ask someone else not in your industry that’ll be honest about what needs to change, or alternately, speak with your Client Manager at SponsoredLinX, we’re always good for some good honest advice.