What is the best way to Advertise?

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by photosnap939, Aug 26, 2009.

  1. photosnap939
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    photosnap939 New Member

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    Hello Photographers,

    What is the best way to Advertise your new business? I get jobs here and there however I would love to be doing this full time. I feel my down fall is the fact that I do not advertise at all.

    I've had some photographer tell me that advertising on the internet is the way to go, Is this statement true? And if so where on the world wide web do I start advertising ?

    I would like to get more catalog work from small businesses.


    Any advice would be helpful!

    Thank you

    Laura

    :wav:
  2. Big Mike
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    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member

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    I think it's important to have a 'web presence' but advertising on the internet isn't the best method for everyone.
    Do you have a web site? If not, I'd get on that. Even when people here about you via word of mouth, they might want to check you out first. Of course a lot of photographers get a lot of their business via the internet. This is where SEO (search engine optimization) can become important. You will do better if your web site comes up on the first page of a Goggle search, than if it comes up on page 34.
    (doh! I see that you do have a web site :))

    Of course, your marketing strategy will largely depend on your target market. Using Facebook can be great for high school seniors but may not land you any commercial work.

    If you want more work from small business...then target them with a marketing campaign.
  3. photosnap939
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    photosnap939 New Member

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    How do I make my website come up first on Goggle? I have added a tone of word tag in my website however that only does so much. Do I pay Google to put me at the top?
  4. bigtwinky
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    bigtwinky New Member

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    I'm no expert, but I believe search engines not only search for key words in the text that you have on your page, but they also look at the HTML coding and tags that are used. I don't think its simply "pay them x dollars and be on top".
  5. Big Mike
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    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member

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    Good question. If I knew...I might be busy shooting right now...instead of toiling away at my desk job :lol:

    There are several factors to Google ranking....and it's a mystery to most people. It also changes from time to time.

    Go HERE and click on 'Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide' (or just Google that)...it will take you to the PDF document that you should read.

    And yes, you can pay google to be a 'sponsored link'.
  6. Big Mike
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    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member

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    These days, there is only so much that you can actually do with coding and tags.

    Good quality links from other highly ranked sites can really help and they always seem to say that fresh content helps quite a bit.
  7. Christie Photo
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    Christie Photo New Member

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    Hi, Laura.

    As Mike was saying, a web presence is very important. I like your site, but couldn't find any product or catalog work. I think that might be a good first step so you can direct potential clients to your site so they can see what you can do for them. That's how I use my site for commercial work. I direct inquiries to my site rather than hoping they find me in a search.

    Yellow Pages works too... even in today's world. Nothing too fancy. Just get your phone and web address out there.

    What has worked best for me, is hooking up with some small, one-man agencies. Typically, they will already have several clients in need of ongoing photography. If you can snag one agency, you might find yourself shooting for several companies. The only drawback is you might get paid slower. The smaller guys usually have to wait until they're paid before they can pay you, and you're likely to be first in. So if you figure design, approval, printing and delivery, it could be 90 days before you get yours.

    I hope this helps.

    -Pete
  8. KmH
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    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish

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    The absolute best advertising is word-of-mouth.
    Solicit testimonials from all your clients. Include them on all your marketing and advertising materials.

    If you want to shoot catalog work for small business' then that's who you direct your advertising to.

    Chrisitie Photo's advice of speaking with an agent is right on the mark. That, and payment typically being on a net 45 to 90 day basis.

    In your situation direct mail would be the most cost effective way to target your advertising.

    However, what you really need is a marketing plan not an advertising plan. They are not the same thing.

    At this point marketing would be a much more effective way to announce your business to those most likely to want to utilize your services.

    I would first make sure all of your printed materials have your web site address promenently displayed before I worry about SEO (Search Engine Optimization) of your web site.

    You can pay Google to be placed at the top of the page but it is not inexpensive and in your circumstances probably a waste of money anyway.
  9. bigtwinky
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    bigtwinky New Member

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    I've had some photography opportunities to shoot products and such for small businesses via friends and contacts who work at developping the actual websites and such. They typically use me as a sub contract and mark up my price to the client, but its a way of getting some contracts.

    Or an actor friend of mine is scheduled to start teaching acting classes and doing workshops in a few weeks. When the time comes to discuss headshots, she is going to be giving out my name to her students as a photographer to contact.

    So often thinking of who else your target market is discussing and dealing with and seeing who you know and where you can get your foot in the door.
  10. jazzodin
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    jazzodin New Member

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    Advertising In my area is very expensive.One ad for a run in my local newspaper is well over $100 which I think is nuts.If it gets me a job thats great but what are the odds of a one time ad getting you a job.My business is still fairly new as well so money for advertising isn't really there yet.But I'm veerry lucky.My business partner(my wife) is a web designer and she knows how to seo our website.I have no idea how she does it but if you search for a wedding photographer or just photography in my area we are on the first page.We also have a facebook page.I know facebook isn't for everyone but if want to do weddings young couples are all over the place on there and look for photographers there.And its free to have page on facebook.Half of our weddings and all of our family portaits have been through facebook.

    Good luck.

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