Spring is already here for those who live further south. Last week I had the opportunity to visit Nashville, TN. With the family in tow, and camera in hand, it was a fabulous trip. I think I even got a bit of a tan! See my Instagram feed for pics from the trip.
While on my trip I got to meet an awesome stylist, Krista Roser, who styles many of the young country stars. And I got to hear how others are using their social media accounts to generate income.
All of which got me thinking about how I've used blogging + social media to keep my calendar fully booked. (I outline the super simple steps below).
I've never needed to invest in any advertising or do any shows/expos. Truth be told, I've invested in advertising twice. Approximately $1000 each time. Once was for a listing on a local wedding website. And the other was on a national magazine's website. The latter got me 3 out-of-town jobs.
Not bad I suppose, I made the money back - but blogging is what has kept me consistently fully booked with shoots. Best of all it's free. And here's how...
I don't search for ideas or try to brainstorm new ideas of what to blog about.
I blog about my clients.
I use the photos I have created and sold to my client for the core of the post. Then I add a little story around those photos.
I call this method C.B.B. - or Client Based Blogging. Sounds simple right? Here's what it does...
Client Based Blogging (C.B.B.)
1. It makes my current clients happy
2. It attracts new clients
Here's why the "Client Based Blogging" method works...
CURRENT CLIENTS FEEL SPECIAL
It makes your current clients happy. The blog post makes them feel special. Heck, I feel special if my work gets featured anywhere! Your clients feel the same when they are featured on yours.
Often clients are more excited about their photos being posted online, than they are about receiving their albums or digital files. They're excited because they want to share and show them off.
So having a well curated blog post + a story shows your client in their best light.
ATTRACTING NEW CLIENTS
Now onto the psychology of how blogging about your current client actually attracts new clients.
- Suspicious - according to socialmedia.com "buyers are naturally suspicious". If they see someone they know has purchased from you, they become more trusting of your product and services.
- Best choice - other times buyers don't have time to shop around. They assume those before them have already done the research and selected the best choice. According to research conducted by Forbes magazine, "we copy people we know because we’re simply uncertain about the best choice".
- Fitting in - according to Psychology Today magazine, sometimes clients purchase from the same company to "imitate others and fit in".
- Success Stories - if your work has aided in your client's success - success stories have an immense impact on consumers, according to socialmedia.com.
Now that we know how and why it works - how do we get people to our blogs?
PROCESS: HOW TO GET PEOPLE TO YOUR BLOG
All roads lead back to your blog - and timing is of the essence.
- When to create the blog post - create your client's blog post before releasing any digital images. Here's the process: you've completed the photography job for your client and he/she has paid you. You are ready to deliver the photos. Before you do, put together their blog post and send them the link. This ensures your client will share the link with their friends and family (not the other products you give them).
Announce on Social Media - announce on any and all of your social media platforms (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter etc.) that you have a new blog post up on your site. Be sure to include the blog post link and post a photo to peak interest.
Email your client - email the blog link and social media posts to your client. Encourage them to tag themselves and share the post on social media.
PROCESS - TWO steps HOW TO WRITE a C.B.B. POST
Still not sure how to make a "Client Based Blog" post? Use these two easy steps to help you:
Use photos your client has selected and purchased
Accompany those photos with a story about your client. Try to write a minimum of 3 sentences. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- What... are they using the photos for? (tells both about them and the service you offer)
- Who... is your client? (promote/plug their business or tell their story)
- How... did the photos impact their life? (e.g. client got first modelling job)
- When... did it happen? (is the timing of their photos important or is age?)
- Where... did it take place? (is significance in the location?)
- Why...? (why did they need these photographs)
A. Create a blog post about your last client using the Client Based Blogging method (C.B.B.)
B. Use the photos they purchased
C. Write a minimum of 3 sentences about the client
D. Post the link to your blog post and teaser images on your social media accounts
E. Send your client the link to their post
F. When you are done go to my website and leave me a comment
ASIDE - I know you do this already, but I want to remind you to have your clients sign a model release before posting any of their images online.
TIP - I also let my clients know ahead of time that I'll be writing a special post about them on my blog. This gets them excited. Or, if they are super private people, they have to chance to let me know that they are uncomfortable.
With love and gratitude and wishing you all the happiness and success,
P.S. If you know someone who will find this article helpful go ahead and share it with them!
If you'd like to take these concepts further and dive in deeper on how you can easily build a profitable wedding photography business, check out the E-Course: For those with a creative background not a business background - how to easily create a successful and profitable wedding photography business.