The success of a business rides on the clients. The more clients you have, the most consistently you are hired, the more you stay afloat. As such, it is the photographer’s constant battle to find more clients and effectively service the ones they have.
Tips for Getting More Photography Clients
Here are our seven tips to use in your photography business to get more clients.
1. Make Your Current Clients Loyal
You may not consider the fact that your current clients relate directly to getting more photography clients- but they do!
Customer loyalty is really the shining glory of a business, especially for a photographer. Photographers develop close, trustworthy bonds with their clients. Having that client keep coming back for all of their photography needs keeps the business afloat.
Client loyalty is important for a few key reasons. Firstly, loyal clients will spread the word about your business to all of their family and friends. Referral business is an important part of success, and referrals really exude confidence when coming from your loyal clients. Next, loyal clients can also act as a focus group and give you feedback on your client process, image quality, and prices. Thirdly, loyal customers will come back to you more frequently than casual clients.
The number one way to make sure that clients love you enough to keep coming back is having a good client process. The client process is your workflow from start to finish, from the initial correspondence (a client requesting a photo shoot) all the way to the image delivery. Make sure that your entire process is easy, smooth, and enjoyable.
Next is to be reliable and dependable. Keep all of your appointments, show up early, and fulfill all of your duties in a timely manner.
Finally, be fun! Make your session comfortable, light hearted, and most importantly- a great experience. Photo shoots should be ways to build memories, not just capture images.
2. Create Referral Programs
A client’s word can bring you more business. Their friends and family are likely to trust their opinion, so if they offer you to their loved ones, that is a +1 in the confidence scale. Thank them for doing this by creating a referral program or VIP program! Maybe offer your loyal client and their friend a $50 credit towards their photo shoots?!
3. Invest in Social Media Marketing
Marketing is what makes or breaks a business. If people don’t know about you, how can they book you? Marketing is extremely important, especially in the social media age. Marketing is the act of spreading awareness about your business, whether it be through digital advertising, partnering with local businesses, or launching billboards!
As a business owner, you need to find the demographic that relates to the service you are offering. Look at income levels that tend to align with your price point, and for clients with interests that may be more aligned with your offering (e.g., pet photographers will look for clients with interest in animals), and age group can also be a big factor. If you’re a family photographer, look for moms and dads, or youth sports – keywords like that!
Social media makes this much easier to do than before (and also much more cost effective)! More people look to social media to find their photographers than ever before, invest in this and reap the rewards of these dominating platforms.
4. Cross Promote with Relevant Businesses
Partnering with local businesses is a fantastic way to get new clients! There is a beauty in creating a symbiotic relationship between two establishments, because in this case, both businesses benefit. You can bring your photography clients into their business and they can bring their clients into your business.
For example, pet photographers often partner with pet groomers. Family photographers partner with youth programs. Wedding photographers partner with vendors.
5. Have a Recognizable and Tailored Brand
In business, a brand is a name, term, design, symbol and/or any other feature that identifies one seller’s good or service as distinct from those of other sellers. As such, branding is a practice in which a company creates these features that identify their brand. Branding is what sets you apart from the other photographers in your area, in the nation, maybe even the world!
Branding can give a business more leverage in the industry and significantly improve client acquisition. The more clients you are able to acquire, the more valuable your photography becomes. As branding aids in recognition, which in turn leads to an establishment in the industry, your photography service becomes a more appealing investment for a client.
If customers see that you’ve invested the time, effort, and finances in making your business well branded and beautiful, they’re more likely to be convinced by the confidence you have in your own work. This generates deeper trust. This leads to having a good reputation, which we shall chat about below!
6. Take Care to Have a Good Reputation
How you talk to people will impact your future success. Understanding how to speak to, take care of, and handle clients is fundamental. Photography is a service industry, and as such, much of what we do revolves around those we, well, service.
Doing this all well leads to a good reputation, which builds confidence and inspired referrals and new clients booking! You need to develop a good rapport.
7. Offer a Mini Session for New Clients
A mini session is, in layman terms, a very short photo shoot. Mini sessions are preset photo shoots at a lower cost than a full session. Clients can come to a mini session and get snapped in a short period of time. Mini sessions are a great way for new clients to trial a photographer
Mini sessions with the purpose of introducing new clients to your photo shoots are called Introductory Sessions. They can be great for establishing yourself in a new area and a fast way to get your name out there.
These introduction sessions don’t need a theme, but having them be styled is a good idea.
By implementing these seven tips into your business plan, you can acquire a lot more clients!