What is Social Media?
How people discover, read and share news,
Internet Forums: www.dpreview.com
Blogs: www.wordpress.com, www.blogger.com,
Social: www.facebook.com ,
Newspaper, TV, Film, Radio
Why Use Social Media?
Stay connected with your existing clients
Create awareness of your photography business
Attract new clients
Who is using Social Media?
Site Monthly Visits
Web Log = Blog
Communicate with your clients
Showcase your latest work
Invite comments and feedback
Learn from other photographers
How to Start Blogging
Create a free account
Fill in your profile: bio, photos, etc
Promote Your Blog
Link on your website
Email to your client list
Add to your email signature
Add to business card
Brochure, flyer, etc.
What to Blog?
Weddings – best images
Send link to your clients
Clients forward link to their friends
Portraits – client favorites
Events – highlights
Donating your work to charities
Special photography training
June 23, 2009
The best way to learn how to blog is to start blogging.
It may sound redundant, but it's true. Yesterday Daniel Payne interviewed me for his presentation on social networking for the upcoming PMPA meeting July 9th.
As I was chatting with him it was fun to reminisce about how blogging started for me and Soul Mates Photo and how it's effected my business. I'm sure wishing
this will reach someone out there in cyber world so here goes nothing!
I totally believe in blogging for business sake and for personal sake. However– a really big however– this was not always the case. When I first heard of blogging I
hated the idea for a few reasons.
#1 I'm not a writer. I'm not a speller. Hooked On Phonics did not work for me.
#2. Who cares about what I do? Honestly.
#3. Why would I spend all this time carefully crafting a post to have no one read it. Really... It's kinda time consuming and I have better things to do like play with
See, these are all really great reasons. Right? Riiiiiight. I also swore to myself and a few others that I would never EVER post pictures about what I ate for dinner. If
you want a good laugh click here.
I started my blog just over a year ago. I was a little late to jump on the blogging train but once I did it's proven itself successful time and time again. Here's a few of
my tips that make my blog what it is. This is just my opinion...
#1. Personal or professional. How do I choose? Beeeeee yourself. Don't try and be someone else when you are writing. I'm not a good writer, and I know that. I
write like I talk and always have. The great thing about that is when people meet me (and have already been to my blog) they have a better idea of who I am
opposed to my well crafted and carefully proofread website. That's just it– the blog is personal. The blog is real. And if you don't want to connect with your clients,
friends and other people that have similar tastes then you might as well stop reading here. I post about personal trips, experiences, my dog, my husband, many
clients, life stories, random weather etc. Honestly I don't know who reads it but I DO KNOW someone does.
#2. Who am I talking to and how do I write? Blog as if you are talking to yourself. There is no way to write to a specific person because there is a mass of people
in the bloggin world. How is one to write each post to reach a couple hundred people. It's simple, you can't. I write like I do in my journal. I write to myself. I'm
doing that right now. Hi self.
#3 It's just a blog, right? Realize that your clients love the blog! Helloooo! First of all, how fun (and nerve racking is it) to have a photo shoot done? When I've
gotten ready for a session where I was the subject I'm all nerves. All the while amazing things are running through my head such as, "Is my face doing something
weird? Do I look alright? How's my outfit? Gosh... here comes that fake smile of mine." PS My fake smiles is the bomb. It comes out in every picture cause for
whatever reason I suck at smiling for the camera on command. Bummer. Anyway... this is how I respond and I'm dying to see some of the photographs from the
session cause I want to make sure they look alright. Our clients, friends and family are THE SAME WAY. When they see that they don't just look alright, they look
fabulous, they forward it to everyone they know. enuff said.
#4. What's the point and does it really increase business? I think it's safe to say the more people know about you the better it is for business. Isn't that why
storefronts want the primo location? They want people to drive by, walk by, discover it? Same with a blog. Think of it as a storefront and people are waiting to
discover it. Moving on.
#5 How do you know it's working? There is this little sweet company. You might have heard of it. I'll give it a shot. Google? Great, you've heard of it. Perfect. I
love Google. I might even want to think about sending them a Valentine's Day card this next year. Google does something that I really respect and appreciate– they
keep it simple and simple is exactly what I want as a small business owner. I have the same account for my email, blog and Google Analytics. It's sweet. All I did
was sign up, plug in a little code and I can now track the traffic to my blog and website. The reason this is important is to find out where people are viewing your
blog, how often, what they are clicking on etc. It's sweet, simple and smart. A no brain-er.
I'm sure I gave Daniel a ear load of info... and I'm sure his speech is going to be interesting. If you are in the Portland area you should check it out. It's the PMPA
meeting. I hope this encouraged someone to start blogging if they are not already! I would love to follow your blog with my Google reader (yet another fabulous
way Google works for me). Share your blog in the comment section below.
Is Anybody Reading Me?
Use Google Analytics to answer, it’s free
Why Use Social Networking?
Join the online community
Stay connected with your clients
Attract new clients
How to start Networking
Create a free account
outward facing, with clients
Inward facing, photographers, vendors
Fill in your profile: bio, photos, etc
Your Blog at LinkedIn
Blog once, include at LinkedIn
Groups at LinkedIn
Follow the PMPA, join discussions, ask questions
Ask others to recommend you
Businesses use Pages on Facebook
Who Recommends Facebook?
Adler, a fashion and portrait photographer, has achieved
success using Facebook as a marketing tool that draws
high school seniors to her studio. She believes
Facebook offers three main benefits for photography
studios: targeted advertising, social networking, and
online promotions. Here are a few highlights from her
On Targeted Advertising: “When you create a Facebook
ad, you are prompted to select several criteria to
determine who will see it. You can select the age range
and geographic region, so, for example, you’d choose 16
to 18-year-olds living in the town nearest to you, thus
designating your target group. When a viewer click on
the ad, he or she will be sent to your page in Facebook or
directly to your company’s Web site, whichever option
you choose.” This is a good target range for seniors. For
brides, you can change the age range to 20 to 35-year-olds
living in the town or city nearest you.
Since my current was created on May 14, 101,675
impressions of it have appeared on pages viewed by
Facebook users for just $2 a day. The ad has been clicked
128 times, leading interested parties to this blog post
announcing my boudoir special for the 2009 Wedding
Season. To date, I've been emailed three times with
inquiries about boudoir photography.
Allison & Jeff Rodgers
About Allison & Jeff Rodgers:
Before opening their photography studio, Allison, armed
with a BFA in Graphic Design and Photography, and her
husband Jeff, also with a BFA in Graphic Design, worked
for several nationally recognized advertising
agencies. Eight years later, they opened Allison Rodgers
Photography in 2004. Their business exploded in five
short years, and Allison Rodgers Photography is now
regarded as one of the most profitable studios in the
A large part of the success of their business can be
attributed to online marketing via Twitter, Facebook,
and their own blog. In fact, Allison and Jeff have been
very successful at creating an online community
consisting of clients and peers. They see viral
marketing as one of the quickest ways to create a buzz
about your studio and put a personal touch on your
business. It is a way clients and peers can get to know you
before they set foot in the door.
Using Facebook to Grow Your Photography Business
Three Kinds of Friends, Three Kinds of Content
Here’s what makes it work. Virtually all of my friends have a personal connection to me and they fall into one of three
1. I know them from high school or college.
2. I know them professionally via my 14-year photography career.
3. I know them as past clients (e.g., former wedding couples.)
Through my network of friends, I’m able to distribute daily content that is both relevant and entertaining. My friends can see
images and subject matter that also happens to fall into one of three categories:
1. Me and my family
2. My weddings and portraiture work
3. My editorial portfolio
Each category may speak to one or another group of my friends. For instance, my college and high school friends might be
most interested in pictures of my family and me. They may also find an interest in my other work, but the personal pictures
carry the most appeal.
On the other hand, many of my former editorial colleagues may take more of an interest in my “Photo of the Day” album that is
updated daily and features my best editorial work over the span of my career.
And finally, my wedding couples have a distinct interest in wedding pictures — especially ones that feature their wedding! By
tagging and captioning these pictures, I’m delivering content to their own Facebook pages that is then distributed to their own
network of friends.
300 Friends and Counting
In a little more than a month’s time, I’ve grown my network to over 300 friends and I’ve already received two inquiries for
wedding photography. These inquiries were from people I know personally — but who didn’t initially think of me for their
I may be jumping the gun here, but based on the early results, I believe Facebook could be the easiest way to market my
photography that I’ve come across. If you’re not already using Facebook to grow your photography business, I encourage you
to try it out.
Element One Photography
Meanwhile, Kim also used social media to market her business.
She says MySpace, a popular hangout for teens, has been a good
source of clients. “I actually owe the success of my first high school
senior season to MySpace,” she says. “I started a MySpace because
it was free, and I felt it would help me reach my target audience.
Almost half of my clients the first year could, in some way, be
traced back to my MySpace marketing.”
Kim says online marketing is a must for a small business like hers,
even more so than advertising in more traditional places like the
yellow pages. “The Internet is definitely the new yellow pages. If
you are not visible online, you might as well just plan on closing up
shop, because you cannot survive without an online presence. Not
only can being online bring you more business, but it also makes
your business more credible.”
That credibility is supported by having strong online reviews from
happy customers. Without even trying, Kim has four positive
reviews on Google Maps. “The more times people run across my
name online,” Kim says, “the better chance I have of people actually
remembering to call me when they need photography of any kind.”
Kim’s story offers several lessons for any small business owner:
Even if you don’t get your website right on day one, there are other
ways to acquire online traffic. Blogs, social media, strong word-of-
mouth, and a bit of basic SEO knowledge can go a long way toward
increasing online traffic, visibility, and most importantly, sales and
Block Twitter Spam
Update Multiple Networks
Subscribe to RSS
RSS – Really Simple Syndication
Find the RSS icon
Add it to Outlook
Or favorite Reader
Shows up like email
Google Reader - RSS
Plaxo and Outlook
Once connected any changes appear in Outlook
automatically (email, phone, address, etc.)
Who is talking about my Company?
Cool Google Tools – All Free
Social media is huge, and kind of free
Reach your clients and prospects online
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