As one might expect, with the benefits associated in having a diverse base of clientele, photographers are often competing to attract new clients. While we are accustom to personal websites and online advertising being the norm within the industry, there are still other ways to attract new leads and convert them into clients. What’s more, none of these particular methods rely upon a ‘hard sell’, yet can be just as effective.
The photography industry is by no means restricted to operating independently. In fact, networking and collaboration is just one vital way that a photographer can grow their book of clients. For instance, wedding photographers could build rapport with makeup artists, who might then be able to advocate for you with another of their own clients.
Similarly, fashion photographers might be well poised to maintain close ties with the designers and/or models they work with, particularly considering the strength that word-of-mouth marketing has within that industry. Networking may even be appropriate in the beauty and retail industries, where there are a variety of businesses for pedicures, hairdressing and coffee shops – as long as you understand your potential client, and they frequent one of these businesses, it pays to form a bond with the respective business owner(s).
Involve Yourself in Other Initiatives
Strictly speaking, involving yourself in the community doesn’t need to be restricted to photography related tasks or events. You might be involved with such things like fundraising or charity events, markets, performances and so forth. Find a cause that you’re passionate about, and embrace it. Being seen as active within the community will no doubt help your image and boost your publicity in return. More often than not you’ll find such events are picked up by local media, with participants usually able to drop a subtle plug about their business.
Let Your Personality Shine
It’s one thing to have a standard website, or even publish online advertisements via various sites. However, your voice and thoughts are another powerful medium to expand your reach. Consider actively engaging in photography-related forums, pages on social media, and even blog posts. Not only is this one way to express your thoughts with like-minded people, but it’s a good way to showcase the person behind the camera – you. You’re also afforded the option to illustrate your creativity via examples of your work, and allow potential clients to better understand your vision.
Consider Introductory Offers
Provided you’re clear in your terms and conditions, and everything is spelled out noticeably, limited time offers or promotions are one way to generate new leads and get people talking. With the level of attention you receive during this time likely to increase, it’s up to you to convert prospective clients into long term customers. Similarly, the prospect of a referral program offers existing clients an incentive to spruik on your behalf the great job you’re doing!
Even once you’re generating leads, you still need to convert them into actual clients. Nothing is more important here than being able to sell yourself and the value proposition that you provide. A client needs to understand what it is that you’ll be able to do for them that someone else can’t. Whether that’s your vision, creativity, pricing structure, personality – don’t pressure them into a sale. Reassure them about your abilities and what deliverables they can expect in an approachable and personable manner.