HELP OMG!!! What Am I To Do?

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by creative_one, Sep 25, 2009.

  1. creative_one

    creative_one TPF Noob!

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    Hi Everyone,

    See im worried that I would be paying all this money (1. domain yearly 2. for an account like smugmug.com or something like that.) I know even thou it might not be much but it adds up after a few years.
    What if no one ever contacts me for a photography job or ever goes on my website or just plain black & white contacts me about a picture that I took or something like that?
    ( just like my other website but its not a photography website. I even set up an e-mail & I haven’t gotten an e-mail from anyone yet plus no one has submitted a comment either & the website has been up for at least a year or more!)
    plus I work full time 5 days a week 8:30 – 5pm is that going to affect my photography?

    How would I after the fact that (if) I bought a domain name would get it set up with a free webhost. what are the steps in doing so?
    Thanks
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Putting up a website probably isn't enough to get you gigs. You still need to get that website seen and that's where marketing and SEO (search engine optimization) comes in. If you can get your website to show up on the first page of Google, for your key words, then you are much more likely to get some business.

    Conversely, if you are just out talking to people and handing out business cards, it really helps to have a website to refer them to, even if it's not high in the search rankings.

    Marketing your business is a whole topic unto itself. Just like photography, it's a talent and a skill that can be learned, but you have to put in the work and be committed to it.

    Working full time and trying to do photography on the side is certainly doable...but it obviously puts some limitations on you.
     
  3. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    There is always a cost of doing business, like the cost of the domain name and web site costs, postage, phone calls, gasoline, presentation materials like portfolios and DVD's and so on. It does all "add up". I think you need to realize if you want freelance gigs, you will have to go out and *get* them. People probably will not come to your web site, seeking you out. You need to make some sales calls. Contact people within your area of operation,and try and persuade them that you can provide the photography services they need. You need to sell yourself, because the website is clearly not bringing in business. A website is a marketing tool.

    Getting freelance work *is work*. Getting the gigs is harder than shooting them. You need to be proactive. Not sure what area of photography you are interested in or capable of shooting. Contact some organizations: car clubs, rugby teams, softball leagues, fishing guides, small retailers, one-man advertising agencies, farmers (seriously!) anybody you could shoot for.
     
  4. SrBiscuit

    SrBiscuit TPF Noob!

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    having a web site won't get you business (unless of course you get your site crawled by search engines and whatnot).
    what WILL get you business is networking.

    just like these guys said...get out there.

    and i wouldnt worry about the cost of your domain and hosting...that will be the least of your costs.
     
  5. Randall Ellis

    Randall Ellis TPF Noob!

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    I agree with the above statements. Being a for-profit photographer means spending the vast majority of your waking hours out there drumming up business. A website is just a place where the people you've already spoken with can go to look up details and take a quick look at some of your work.

    - Randy
     
  6. chakalakasp

    chakalakasp TPF Noob!

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    What exactly are you asking us?
     
  7. bigtwinky

    bigtwinky No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Doing photography and running a photography business are very different.

    Sounds like you need some knowledge / teachings as to how to run a business... which would include lessons on marketing and promotion.

    Putting up a website is not a means to get business. You may get a few hits, but really, you need to be out there, get known, be seen. Talk to people...word of mouth is a huge thing.

    When I started a flickr account not too long ago, i didn't have many contacts, my photos never got hits, I never received comments. So I started to visit other people's sites, find groups, give thoughtful comments, add others as contacts after leaving comments, send messages and so on.

    I now have more contacts, get views, receive comments.

    If you sit back, nothing happens.
     
  8. Christie Photo

    Christie Photo No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    yeah... what we talking? Maybe $100/year? I think I'm paying $110 or so.

    -Pete
     
  9. Ham1

    Ham1 TPF Noob!

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    If you decide to go with SmugMug, we have a special deal to buy your own domain through GoDaddy here: www.smugmugdomains.com and we'll automatically set up your DNS settings for you.

    NOTE: you need the SmugMug Pro or Power account for this to work.

    Here is some SmugMug SEO tips: Photographers SEO Book » SmugMug SEO Overview: Website Photo System Built for Search


    and here: help - Maximize Your Findability
     
  10. raider

    raider TPF Noob!

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    easy solution - quit your job. sounds like you want to go into the photography business. quit your job, file all the paperwork, present the bank with a business proposal, get a studio, buy equipment, hire employees, hire a lawyer, accountant, web designer... easy stuff. good luck!
     
  11. msf

    msf TPF Noob!

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    What sort of photography work do farmers usually require? Havent thought of them other than possibly family portraits, plenty of farmers in this area. :D
     
  12. Dwig

    Dwig TPF Noob!

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    You can't rely on a web site as a means of "first contact" with clients. You need to push first contact through networking and/or some form of targeted marketing. Exactly what and how depends on the type of photography you're trying to do. The website is for "second contact" where your new contacts can then go to see your work.

    Also, don't throw out a message that you do everything. Pick a specialty and stick with it. If you want to market yourself for multiple specialties, consider multiple websites or, at the least, a cleanly divided master site with separated sections.

    You can "host" multiple sites easily with a single host account. My personal blog uses my host account's associated domain name:

    HappyThursday

    I also "host" as small site for a friend who has written an easier to read (3rd grade reading level) variant of the classic inspirational book (stilted early-20th century style) that's at the core of the Alcoholics Anonymous program:

    seedsbyandrewm.com

    This latter site resides as a sub-folder on my main HappyThursday site. I just have a second domain that is "parked" and does nothing but redirects to the pages on HappyThursday. I pay for the second domain and a trivial additional amount to have it parked, but don't have to have a second full host account for it. Actually, I could have avoided even that additional expense if I didn't mind having to use a longer URL for the Seeds site, something like "http://Seeds.HappyThursday.com", which revealed where the site lived. I don't mind that (I've actually enabled it), but the books author wants a clean URL that isn't shared and could be migrated to a second host independently without the URL changing.
     

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