Marketing Strategies for Wedding Photographers

What is your most valuable source of referrals for wedding clients (after word of mouth)

  • Blogging/ SEO / Google

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  • Paid advertising

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Anthonymickphoto

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Marketing seems to be the most important part of running a photography business (a mediocre photographer can make much better business than a talented photographer with no marketing skills).

I've tried many things including: facebook ads (found it to be very low return), Google ads (Some return), rebuilt my website from the ground up using squarespace (was previously with weebly and it was horrendous in terms of seo), blogging frequently, and local SEO using google+,Bing, Moz, YP and Yelp (still working on getting featured and building backlinks). I'm still finding difficulty ranking on search engines and would like to hear if you have any opinions.

Would it be better to hire an SEO expert and focus on organic traffic or continue with paid advertising. I've bled several thousand on useless social media and web advertising. Feedback would be greatly appreciated. My site is www.mickealphoto.com
 

Vtec44

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IMHO, your work still has to stand out in order to attract an audience, and a small fraction of that audience may get married, and a small fraction of that pool may book you. You're selling intangible products and it has a lot to do with the emotional connection to your work, to you, to your brand. They're unlikely to spend a big chunk of their wedding budget on someone they saw on a Google search, unless your work is striking. What has been working well for me is making that emotional connection through my photos, build relationship with other photographers within my field, network with other vendors. It's a small industry, people know each other and would more than likely to refer clients to you if they like you.
 
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Anthonymickphoto

Anthonymickphoto

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IMHO, your work still has to stand out in order to attract an audience, and a small fraction of that audience may get married, and a small fraction of that pool may book you. You're selling intangible products and it has a lot to do with the emotional connection to your work, to you, to your brand. They're unlikely to spend a big chunk of their wedding budget on someone they saw on a Google search, unless your work is striking. What has been working well for me is making that emotional connection through my photos, build relationship with other photographers within my field, network with other vendors. It's a small industry, people know each other and would more than likely to refer clients to you if they like you.
Thanks for the honest reply. I do understand the value of word of mouth and networking with vendors to get referrals. I've had people call to book before even seeing my work because they got a good word. This of course takes a while to build. My question though was really referring to web marketing and being found in the first place. There seems to be so much noise out there its very difficult to get noticed in the first place.
 

Vtec44

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Thanks for the honest reply. I do understand the value of word of mouth and networking with vendors to get referrals. I've had people call to book before even seeing my work because they got a good word. This of course takes a while to build. My question though was really referring to web marketing and being found in the first place. There seems to be so much noise out there its very difficult to get noticed in the first place.

Everyone is doing the same thing that you and I do. You just need to somehow standout and separate yourself from the crowd. Unless the core foundation of your business is strong, IMHO you will just throw away money doing SEO and/or paid advertising.

Here's a question for you, do you know your ideal client profile?
 

Designer

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Would it be better to hire an SEO expert and focus on organic traffic or continue with paid advertising.
I'd split the advertising budget between two people, one in each of those two areas. Whichever one has the best return gets more of my business the following year.
 

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