After months of planning with your clients before the wedding, photographing them on the wedding day, and delivering their images and album to them, it can be a relief to finally fulfill all commitments and orders with them. Even though your work is over, it doesn’t mean the relationship between you and your clients needs to be! You have worked hard to make them loyal fans of your business, and it is important that you continue to nurture the relationship and continuously market to them. By staying engaged with your former customers and giving them little reminders to talk about you and your business, you can create a strong referral base that continues to bring you ideal clients! Here are a few ways to market to your past clients.
Take the loyalty your customers have for you and continuously nurture it. Re-engage your customers at every point in their lives. The wedding day is just the beginning of the adventures your customers will experience together. After the wedding, your couples will have a list of to-do’s, from buying a house to having a baby. This is a perfect time to help them out! For example, if you know a real-estate agent, host a night at your studio with them and your couple. This can be just the introduction your couples need to really get started on one of the major post-wedding milestones they are trying to accomplish. When you provide an excellent experience for your customers, they will want to work with you in the future. Remember, create stories to for them share about you to help increase referrals!
Wedding photographer Leslie Gilbert continuously works to think about what she can to to cater to her past customers. She has a process to move clients from wedding photos to maternity photos to family portraits, and all points in between. During the initial planning process with her couples, she intentionally places baby albums and family prints in the space she meets with her clients. By doing this, she knows that it will help to plant the seed about what her couples may need after the wedding. When couples see these albums, it helps direct some of the conversation to the topic of children and future plans. Throughout the entire wedding process, she also strives to develop a friendship with most of her clients, making her their go-to photographer for any future photographic needs.
“Build trust during the wedding – clients will always go to a photographer they trust long after the wedding is over” – Leslie Gilbert
Tip: Remember to outsource your album and post wedding photography needs to the appropriate partners so that your turnaround time is fast! Getting your clients their products as soon as possible helps them remember you for years to come.
Invite them to Events
By working to continuously photograph your ideal couples, you have the unique opportunity to create an exclusive club of like-minded clients. As your clients progress through the life stages that come after getting married, it can sometimes be challenging to find other couples that are interested in similar things as them. Since you shoot clients who have similarities, take the opportunity to introduce your clients to one another!
For example, during the slower season, host a brunch and invite your past customers to it. This is a simple way for couples to mingle and get to know new people! Along with meeting like-minded couples and potentially forming new friendships, all of these couples have at least one thing in common: you were their wedding photographer. This makes it simple for them to share stories and experiences they had with you, keeping you top of mind.
Create a Newsletter
Throughout the wedding process, you may have sent your couples several emails, from how to prepare for the wedding day to the specific wedding day timeline. Even though the wedding day is over, this does not mean that your emails and updates have to stop! Similar to sharing information about planning a wedding, send out a weekly or monthly newsletter that discusses what happens after the wedding. Find areas that you know can be challenging for newlyweds and they could use advice on, such as financial planning or even how to stay healthy and work out! Create a newsletter that dives into these topics and shares tips and insights on how to work through these as a newly married couple.
Abbey Kyhl, a wedding photographer in Salt Lake City, developed a post-wedding newsletter that continuously keeps her past clients engaged with her. This piece of content goes out exclusively to her past brides, and keeps them in the loop indefinitely. She also provides opportunities specifically for past couples, such as family portrait sessions. Typically, Abbey does not shoot portrait sessions, so she makes this an exclusive opportunity for her past clients. This serves to make her couples feel like they are part of an exclusive club.
“Emphasize to brides that they are part of a special club when they book you. Even though they are not still in the process of getting married they are, and will forever be, an AK Bride.” – Abbey Kyhl
As your potential clients transition from phase to phase, the way that you market to them needs to evolve and grow. Every stage has importance and must be handled a little differently. Creating strong content helps clients to ascend the client referral ladder, moving them from Advocates of your business to True Believers.
Good content, whether it is on a blog, in an email, or in the form of planned interaction, continues to build on itself. These interactions are done to promote growth and sustain future endeavors. For additional ways to market to past clients, download our Guide to Marketing for Wedding Photographers!