Sometimes you can’t wait for the client to come to you. Sometimes, it’s more effective to take the wheel yourself and drive! One such way is to reach out to brands and companies you’re interested in working with. These are cold emails or calls, showing a drive and initiative to get your abilities out there!
Here is our guide on how to pitch photography to brands (and get the job!).
What Is a Pitch?
A pitch is a presentation of a business idea or business offering to a potential client, brand, or company. Pitches come in many forms- they can be verbal, such as over the phone or in a meeting, they can be a full presentation with slideshow files and of the like, or they can be an email or PDF packet. There are many different ways to pitch.
For photographers, most pitches are via email.
Contrary to popular belief, offering a pitch is not oriented on convincing people to hire you- the pitch is intended to convince people that you are interesting, have something to offer, and are worth a chance. The goal of a pitch is to start a conversation, convincing someone to hire you comes after the conversation begins.
Where To Start?
Well, in order to create a pitch, you really need to nail down what you want to do as a photographer. Look into the types of photography you want to create and make a list of companies, brands, or businesses that fit your goals. You can even just point out categories of businesses!
As well as this, for ideas and education, look up some sample pitches (it doesn’t even have to be oriented on photographers, this can be pitches for design work, and of the like) and get some ideas on what people are writing, their tone, and what information is being included.
These are great places to start!
What Do You Need In Your Photography Pitch?
The most important thing to really focus in on within a photography pitch is offering something that the brand does not currently have. What can you bring to the table that others have not before? What do you feel is missing from their business?
When you are expressing this in your pitch, make sure that you are not presenting it as if the company has made a major oversight or you are critiquing them- simply offer the idea and provide ample facts to show how doing XYZ can benefit their brand in some capacity. Using terms such as “have you potentially considered” or “I had an idea that I would love to share with you” is a great way to be non-accusatory.
Be prepared for confusion or defensiveness, that does happen. You have to remember that many businesses and business people are passionate but may not be visually ‘literate’ so to speak. Not everyone you contact will have a day-to-day hand on the visual aspect of their company.
Now, for crafting your pitch, ensure the following elements are in there:
- A brief introduction for yourself.
- A sampling of relevant work of yours.
- How you can help the company
- Contact information
It’s a good idea to include a lot of visual representations to drive your point! If you are doing a PDF file for your pitch, make sure it has a clear, clean, and professional design.
Make sure the length is The person reading your pitch will have little time and they won’t stick around to read a short novel. Keep the written part of your proposal snappy, polite and engaging.
You don’t need to include your full resume yet, you’re not at that stage of the process yet. But feel welcome to include some relevant pieces of your history in the brief introductions about yourself.
How To Pitch Photography To Brands
Start researching brands that fit your wants. In the process of researching the brands, be attentive to their visual and aesthetic needs and start considering ways in which you can enhance their brand with your own photography. Pay attention as to whether or not they even hire photographers, if they do, how do they hire them, and such relevant information.
During the research phase, also find all of the necessary contact information for the brands that appear on your radar and those that you want to have further conversation with. It’s a good idea to keep this in an organized list.
Once you’ve established the brands you want to contact, it is time to create your pitch. Decide what format you prefer your pitch to be sent in and begin creating it. Focus on what we discussed above as to what you need in your pitch. Make sure that each pitch is tailored for the individual company, not a quick copy and paste job- brands know this and will consider it spammy if it is impersonal to them!
Once your pitch is complete, send an email. It’s perfectly acceptable to follow up on the email after two weeks if you have not heard back, but try not to follow up too incessantly for the brand to either block your email address or be warded off by your over-persistence. It is good to appear dedicated to working with them, but accept “no” if it is given to you.
That being said, if you are rejected, don’t be discouraged! There are hundreds, if not thousands, of potential companies to work for and work with. Sometimes photography is just not the brand’s current priority and that is alright. Keep contacting and one of the fish will bite!
In conclusion, pitching is an excellent marketing strategy to get your name out there and land you the exact photography jobs that you want. Take the tips in this article and convert them to your own magnificent pitch that brands will have a hard time saying no to!