“The more you tell, the more you sell.” This old marketing motto popularized by advertising mogul David Ogilvy does ring a bell with us. And we’ll tell you why. In a highly competitive industry such as the wedding photography business, one of the foremost conditions to staying relevant and being successful is knowing how to market your services well. As a wedding photography business owner, you might already know that booking clients is one of the most important elements of growing your business. Therefore, making it all the more important to understand the basics of marketing your wedding photography business. In this blog, we bring you 5 wedding photography marketing tips that you can work on to take your business to the next level.
A Roadmap To Market Your Wedding Photography Business
1. Build Your Online Presence
One of the stepping stones to market your wedding photography business is building an online presence. Why? Well, the fact that there were around 4.95 billion active internet users worldwide at the start of 2022 might give you an idea. That accounts for a whopping 62.5% of the world’s total population! This number paints a very clear picture - one that clearly indicates that more than half of your target audience is out there surfing the internet either searching for answers, looking for jobs, seeking help, buying, or selling. Basically, all those things you can do on the internet. So it’s pretty simple - taking your business online opens up a whole new world of growth possibilities.
The process of building your online presence starts with building a website, which also includes other multiple integral action items. You can find that list of those actions below:
Needless to say, building a functional website can help to expand your business reach online. It serves as a virtual address for your photography business and is also the foundation of your future photography marketing plans. Here’s a brief layout of how to get started with a strong photography website:
- Select a website builder or CMS of your choice. Squarespace, Wix, WordPress, Shopify, Pixpa, SmugMug, and Showit are some of the popular choices among photographers.
- Register a domain name. Your domain name is one of the ways internet users can find your website. As per this definition stated by Cloudflare, “A domain name is a unique, easy-to-remember address used to access a website. It is a string of text that maps to a numeric IP address, used to access a website from client software.” You can name your domain anything you want. However, we’d suggest that you don’t rush this process and take some time to finalize the name. Most photographers, and even business owners, tend to name it after the brand’s name. Moreover, there are different kinds of domains. However, using a .com domain is looked upon as more beneficial to introduce trustworthiness to an international audience.
- Select a web hosting plan. In simplest terms, web hosting makes space in a web server to store all of your website’s files (to make your website easily accessible to internet users). There are different types of web hosting - shared hosting, virtual private servers, dedicated hosting, and managed hosting. You can choose the one that fits your requirements and budget.
- Choose a theme. Most of the website builders as well as CMS provide pre-installed themes and templates that you can simply choose from to apply. You can also personalize certain elements as per your liking. To unlock premium themes, you can seek paid options.
B. Bio Page
After setting up your website, we’d suggest that you set up your bio page. It is one of the most visited web pages on your website. More importantly, it is one of those pages that forms a first virtual impression of you as a wedding photographer and a professional. Here are some of the things to keep in mind while writing your “About Me” page:
- Include a self-portrait.
- Name the navigation item as “About Me”.
- Talk in first person.
- Introduce yourself and your story.
- Keep the tone of writing positive and the content concise.
- Include introductory or client testimonial videos if any.
- Add a call-to-action button.
- Make the page image-rich.
Related Read: Tips To Write An Amazing Photographer 'About Me' Page
C. Pricing Page Or Contact Form
Should you include a pricing page on your website? Wedding photographers often find themselves in this dilemma, and the truth is that there's no right or wrong answer to this. The choice is totally yours. Nevertheless, you do require a page on your website that enables interested clients to drop a query or booking request. And whether you wish to go ahead with a pricing page or a contact form, make a choice that suits your business needs, and either option works, as long as at least one of them is up there. Don’t forget to add a strong call to action on this page!
Having an online portfolio to display to clients and potential clients is non-negotiable! If your bio is where interested clients learn about you, then your portfolio is a place where they learn about your photography style. In addition to that, your portfolio represents your brand and its USP. It is important to put up photographs that do justice to your photography style and target market. For instance, if you wish to attract clients interested in elopements, you’ve got to display a section that showcases elopements you’ve photographed in the past. This not only helps in building trust but also sets a true representation of your wedding photography brand. However, if you are someone who’s just starting out as a photographer, styled shoots can help you build those lucrative portfolios to attract ideal clients.
E. Client Testimonials
Adding client testimonials to your website can help you build a sense of trust in potential clients. And there are different ways you can include them - maybe as a comment, or perhaps customer story blog, or even video testimonials, if possible. Even though it is optional, adding testimonials to your website adds to your benefit. However, if you do decide to add testimonials, keep them real, as a fake testimonial can do more harm than good to your brand’s reputation!
Suggested Read: ShootDotEdit Customer Reviews: True Testimonials
F. User Interface & User Experience
There’s no guessing - a good user interface and user experience is a game-changer! So much so that “a well-designed user interface could raise your website’s conversion rate by up to 200%, and a better UX design could yield conversion rates up to 400%,” as put forth by a study conducted by Forrester Research. Pay attention to your UI and UX as it not only enhances the look and feel of your website but also improves usability.
2. Search Engine Optimization
“The best place to hide a dead body is page two of Google.” This quote is used again and again to emphasize the importance of search engine optimization (SEO). However, it also hints at the complexity of the competition that exists to rank higher on a search engine result page. And therefore, focusing on SEO stands as a crucial aspect for marketing for photographers.
A. On-Page & Off-Page SEO
As per Moz, “On-page SEO is the practice of optimizing individual web pages in order to rank higher and earn more relevant traffic in search engines.” Here’s an outlook of the current on-page ranking factors as suggested by Moz. On the other hand, “Off-page SEO refers to activities outside of the webpage you want to rank. Most often, off-page SEO refers to building links, but can include other activities such as social media, raising brand awareness, and PR efforts.”
Suggested Read: SEO Tips For Wedding Photographers: The Complete Guide
B. Mobile-Friendly Website
As per a report, “The typical mobile user now spends an average of 4 hours and 48 minutes per user, per day using their phone”. This statistic is a clear enough indication that a major fraction of your potential audience might be scrolling through your website on their mobile devices. Therefore, the need to make your website mobile-friendly. A website that is not optimized for a mobile user experience and has a slow page-load speed is likely to trigger a higher bounce rate.
C. Image Optimization
Most wedding photographers look forward to designing their website in a way that makes it appear image-rich and aesthetically pleasing. However, incurring that at the cost of page load speed would only drive you closer to bounce rate. After all, nobody loves a website that takes ages to fully load. And “ages” in terms of the attention span of a web user could be anything that exceeds more than 2-3 seconds. Here are a few tips that you could refer to for better image optimization:
- Accurately rename your image file as per the closest description.
- Include alternate text for your images.
- Add photographs with compressed image file sizes.
D. Set Up A Google My Business Listing
Google offers various tools and platforms that you can use to promote your business. One such feature is Google My Business. Listing your business on this allows you to improve the visibility of your wedding photography business online and get your photography website noticed. To learn more about how you can set up a Google My Business listing, refer to this blog on How To Use Google My Business For Your Photography Business.
Quick tip: Pay-per-click (PPC) marketing, retargeting and remarketing campaigns, and video marketing are a few other optimization tactics that you can incorporate into your wedding photography marketing plan to yield better results.
3. Explore The Multiverse Of Social Media
Your social media platforms are a visual representation of the experience that your services can offer to your future clients. They also unlock a whole new universe of internet users that could be your potential clients. However, even though social media is a powerful tool for marketing for photographers, it is widely experimental. And “what might work” constantly changes! But some things will always apply to the world of social media marketing, and here are a few tips that can help to grow your business on social media:
A. Choose The Right Social Media Platforms
Social media platforms stand as an important pillar of your wedding photography marketing plan. And even though it could help to build a strong presence on all the platforms, it is beneficial to understand the ins and outs of the specific platforms your target audience uses the most. Each platform serves a different purpose. For example, Pinterest and Instagram can work both as an online portfolio as well as a medium to generate leads and engage users. However, Facebook and Twitter could help you be a part of online photography communities and forums and also start important conversations. And YouTube and TikTok can work best for both resourceful and enticing short and long-form video content.
It turns out, as a wedding photographer, having an enticing social media presence on Pinterest and Instagram can be highly beneficial! The reason being both of these platforms allow you to not only curate a perfect mood board but also engage with the audience via the display of images (they act as visual search engines). Moreover, both Pinterest and Instagram are two of the most popular platforms future brides and grooms use for wedding inspiration and planning. However, it is essential to ask yourself - what is your purpose in using social media for your business? Is it lead generation, increasing the brand’s reach, or building an online portfolio? The answer to this question could help you choose the right medium!
B. Social Media Campaigns
Simply existing in social media won’t guarantee results. Successful social media campaigns can help you bridge the gap between simply having an online presence and building an effective social media reach. Here’s how you can go about building a social media campaign:
- Set clear campaign goals that you look forward to achieving (increasing brand awareness, lead generation, increasing engagement, increasing social following, etc.).
- Study your target audience for the targeted campaign. Build an ideal client persona - this could include information such as age group, demographic details, gender, etc.
- Select a social media platform/channel of your choice.
- Decide on a budget.
- Set the time duration of the campaign. Also, get the timing right. Instead of posting your content at any hour of the day, look for optimal timing suggestions that might help you drive maximum engagement.
- Focus on content creation and curation - social copy, hashtags, infographics, images - all of it.
- Create a branded keyword if required.
- Set a social media calendar and schedule times for specific posts.
- Track the performance and engagement using social media management tools and work on competitive analysis.
C. Monitor Engagement
As much as posting quality content can help you drive traffic to your social media channels, effectively monitoring the engagement could give it a boost. The more you efficiently engage with your audience in the comments and mentions, the more likely you are to keep the audience’s interest. Moreover, timely responses to messages and queries on social media could also help you create a good customer service experience.
D. Paid Ads
There are different types of social media ads - Facebook ads (story ads, photo ads, carousel ads, video ads, collection ads, Messenger ads), Instagram ads (photo video ads, carousel ads, collections ads, IGTV ads, etc.), LinkedIn ads, Pinterest ads, YouTube ads, and Twitter ads. Paid advertising could work as an effective wedding photography marketing strategy to boost your social media reach. However, it is essential to decide what you are paying for - cost per click or cost per impression. Here are a few steps of how you can set up paid advertising to your benefit:
- Define your ad objective (awareness, conversion, or consideration).
- Study the target audience.
- Select a specific ad format.
- Decide on a budget.
- Create your ad.
- Finalize and launch your ad.
E. Hashtag Strategy
An effective hashtag strategy can work wonders for your social media reach. However, there are no set guidelines or one set success mantra to get it right. And therefore, it mostly weighs down to experimenting and monitoring what works best for your posts. But here are a few social media marketing tips that you can give a try:
- Note that different social media channels have different hashtag limits, however, that doesn’t ensure that you have added hashtags to the optimum limit.
- Use manual searching to your benefit. Go to the search or explore options and closely track the trending hashtags for the day or week. See if any of those work in your favor. Also, you can manually type in hashtags to find its suggestive reach.
- Closely monitor the hashtags that your competitors are using for similar content.
- Experiment with different hashtags limits. Try adding multiple hashtags, then post something with limited hashtags with a similar reach and study the results.
- Do not flood your post with irrelevant hashtags. Remember, relevancy is important.
- Segregate your post with an equal compilation of hashtags that have - a very high reach (100k to 1M), high reach (up to 100k), moderate reach (up to 5000), location-specific reach, and as well as branded hashtags.
- Make use of online hashtag research tools such as Later, Hashtagify.Me, Tailwind, BundlePost, Tagboard, SocialMention, etc.
Quick tip: Use geotags on Instagram to tag the wedding venue for better search engine optimization. It allows your Instagram post to appear on the search results of the respective venue as well. Therefore, leading to an increase of 79% more engagement for posts with a geotag in comparison to those without geotags.
4. Use Content Marketing To Help Your Clients
Nothing can better reflect on the need for content marketing than this quote from Lee Odden, “Content is the reason search began in the first place.” It’s true, search intent places a crucial role. And good content marketing is all about getting that right! Figuring out the search intent of your potential clients and providing quality content that justifies that intent is the backbone of great content marketing!
A. Blogging That Works
The benefits of blogging are multifold. A: It could help you drive traffic to your website; B: It could serve as an informative directory for your clients; and C: It could be your mouthpiece for sharing your experiences and stories as a wedding photographer. Moreover, apart from just the purpose of availing photography services, there are multiple ways of attracting the attention of your prospective clients to your website. And one of these ways includes writing about topics your clients will want to read about. These could be extensive guides on wedding/engagement planning, décor, wedding day timeline, outfit planning, etc.
Quick tip: If writing takes up a lot of your time, time that you would rather spend taking on new projects, Fotoskribe can help! Fotoskribe is a premium blogging service and content creation agency for photographers and creative professionals. To learn more about how Fotoskribe can help your brand by getting Google and your clients’ attention, take a look here!
B. Newsletter & Email Marketing
Working towards a successful email marketing plan is one of the most effective wedding photography marketing tips. Moreover, as per Optinmonster, “99% of email users check their email every day, some as much as 20 times a day!” This shocking number states the potential power that an email holds to unlock every time you hit send to one. However, building an effective email marketing strategy takes into account multiple factors, some of which we have listed below:
- Build a customer email list and segregate them into different categories.
- Work on building an email marketing strategy that provides a clear picture of email frequency, the choice of email management tool, email format, and other important factors.
- Weave an email marketing campaign closely considering all the parameters of your strategy.
- Create content and subject lines that draw attention.
- Segment your email list into different categories for a more personalized experience.
- A/B test your emails to analyze what works better and why.
Suggested Read: 5 Wedding Photography Email Templates You Need
5. Networking & Building Relations
Word of mouth is and has always been a strong marketing force. After all, good or bad, word spreads fast and it is all the good attention among the right group of people that can make all the difference! In the words of Philip Kotler, an American marketing author, consultant, and professor, “The best advertising is done by satisfied customers.” And in a wedding photographer’s case, add vendors to that list.
Therefore, strategize your wedding photography marketing in a manner that attracts your ideal client and also ensures that they keep coming back to you for all their photography requirements. And for that to happen, you would need to devote time to networking and building stable professional relationships with both clients and other vendors. Focusing your efforts on marketing will help you grow your photography business. Here’s how!
A. Clients Relationships
As a wedding photographer, one of your top goals is to book clients that are ideal for your business. Once you book those clients, you need to take care of them! Taking care of clients is an important part of your wedding photography marketing and growing your business, as your ideal clients will likely refer you to their family and friends, who could also be your potential clients. One of the great ways to do this is to give your past and present clients thoughtful gifts. When you do that, it could show your clients that they mean a lot to you and that you are making a genuine effort to stay in touch with them. And while you are at it, remember to send gifts that your ideal clients can share on Facebook and Instagram, because when they give you a shout-out, it can help drive traffic to your website.
Suggested Read: Nail The Client Experience: Featuring Orlando Oliveira
B. Vendors Relationships
Establishing genuine relationships with other vendors is also an essential part of growing your business. Why? Because the ideal clients you are looking for might already be working with some of these vendors, thus giving you an opportunity to collaborate with the same set of clients. So, if you are looking to make lasting professional relationships with fellow vendors, remember to be personable when meeting with them. While they are a potential business lead, they are people too! Reach out to your vendors about ways you can promote and support one another.
There are several ways you can show your fellow vendors some love. One of them is offering to give free headshots or tag along to a wedding to document them in their element. You can also create vendor cards that feature one particular image that represents that vendor’s specialty. In your blog posts, link out to vendors that you worked with for each wedding so viewers can easily access their websites as well.
Quick tip: Consider hosting a networking night once a month to bring you and your vendors together outside of work. This is a fun way to get to know them and nurture those relationships! Moreover, it also paves way for in-person sales.
C. Give A Sample Album
Think of a sample album as a preview to your website, your images, and your business. The album you create represents your personal photography style and could intrigue clients to find out more about you and your business. Connect with your favorite venues and ask if you can provide them with a sample album to share with potential clients. When you provide venues with an album, they can promote your photography work as well as showcase their property. In turn, this can strengthen the relationship you have with that vendor. Instead of having to pay for wedding photography advertising, you are using the relationship you have built to bring in more clients for your wedding photography business. That, according to us, is a win-win situation for both parties involved!
Justin and Mary are proof that this technique works when it comes to photography marketing. “We left a 10×10 maroon album at a wedding venue long back. That one book that we left at that location has brought us just under $50,000 in bookings in a span of eight years,” they say.
D. Referral Programs
Incentivizing referrals stands as one of the smart photography marketing ideas that work. Referrals, both from clients and vendors, can help you market your wedding photography business and book more clients. There are multiple ways of building a referral program - you could add a small incentive in the form of special discounts for future sessions, an additional service, a free photo album, a free holiday session, etc. However, to make the most out of referrals, it is important that you believe in the power of word of mouth as well as pay attention to your customer service. After all, carving a wholesome experience for your clients can help you organically spread a good word for your business.
Bonus Tips: Wedding Photography Marketing Ideas
- Streamline your content marketing efforts to build marketing campaigns to target your local audience.
- Every once in a while, introduce special offers/discounts.
- Approach wedding directories such as The Knot, Wedding Maps, and Fearless Photographers to diversify your brand’s reach.
- Use holiday cards to grow your wedding photography business.
Raise Your Brand’s Recall Value
Be it staying in touch with your clients through an excellent post-sales service or building new connections with other service providers from the wedding industry, or sharing your work with them, the end goal for all these marketing practices is to remain top of their minds and increase your brand’s recall value. And if you could club these practices with customized pricing to suit the needs of your clients and maximize your profits, then you’ve created a killer combo! Remember to wear your confidence as you prepare yourself to bag that big wedding photography assignment. We hope the 5 photography marketing tactics we shared here help you book more weddings in a sustainable way. If you have your own set of marketing strategies that you swear by, we’d love to learn about them too!
Further Read: How To Close A Deal As A Wedding PhotographerAt ShootDotEdit, we provide professional photo editing services for wedding photographers to lessen their post-production workload and help them channel their energies toward taking their business to new heights. To learn more about how we can help your wedding photography business, check out our pricing plans.