Photography is an interesting profession in that you never know just when—and where—an opportunity may arise. This makes the age-old adage of “leaving no stone unturned” a big part of succeeding as a commercial photographer. But while we’re not suggesting that, in 2020, you start knocking on doors with business cards and brochures, it is important to make sure you’re promoting your work in the right places to ensure you’re top-of-mind when the need arises. Here are three often overlooked places to start focusing your efforts.
1. Your Inner Circle
Your inner circle—friends, family, neighbors and even acquaintances—could be one of your biggest untapped networks. But boasting to Uncle Joe that your recent image just got 500 likes on Instagram isn’t exactly the way to go about tapping into it. Make sure those who are close to you have a clear understanding of the art you create and the services you provide so that they can share that information with the people in their networks who may be in the market for a photographer.
Pro-tip: Don’t share your work like you would your high school art project. Enable friends and family to spread the word by explaining what you do, providing links to your work and stating ways potential clients can get in touch.
- Your Workplace
In the gig economy, seemingly everyone’s got a side hustle. If photography is yours, start talking to your friends and colleagues at your day job to see if you can help them build and market their brands with photography. Maybe the person sitting right across from you has been cultivating a chocolate-making business from home and could use a few professional food photos for their website and social media pages. If your company hosts outings or events, offer to snap a few photos of the fun to be shared through the corporate intranet or newsletter. Again, you never know when and where you’ll find your next best client.
Pro-tip: Don’t be that guy—or girl—who people avoid making eye contact with in the break room for fear of getting trapped in another sales pitch. Ask others about their interests outside of work and find a natural way to steer the conversation toward how you may be able to support their ventures.
- Trade Shows and Conventions
We’re not necessarily talking photography trade shows (although it’s obviously great to attend those if you can). Think about some of the industries in which you’d be potentially interested in growing your business footprint and start researching the events that companies within those industries attend. Marketing at trade shows has some perks—for one, you already know that the companies exhibiting have both the need and budget for marketing, of which photography is an essential component. Plus, it takes some of the pressure out of networking, since most people are there to do just that. In just a few hours, you could easily find yourself down 100-plus business cards and up at least a few dozen high-quality leads.
Pro-tip: Don’t walk up to someone’s booth and start selling your services to their customers. Companies put a lot of time and effort into their event strategies, and trade shows are some of their biggest business development opportunities. Instead, approach businesses with your card and a brief pitch, walk the floor and spark up conversations in communal areas.
- Through an Online Art Gallery
You can go to the ends of the earth to find photography clients, but if you don’t have a platform where you can exhibit and sell your work, a lot of that effort could be for naught. Your Art Gallery is making it easy for artists to run their own art galleries without any of the administrative hassle. Check out www.yourartgallery.com to see how easy it is to start showcasing and selling your work.
Pro-tip: Be sure to optimize your online gallery with keywords and other search criteria to get your art in front of collectors, curators, designers and enthusiasts who are ready to buy what you’re selling. Get started today!