We have all been affected by COVID-19, in one way or another, and it should go without saying that this will have lasting impacts on businesses future decisions. It’s critical to make proactive steps to help you and your business grow through this trying time in history. Being a professional photographer means that you’re heavily reliant on your client shoots to drive sales. But, there are tons of ways to make money and build your business without ever having to leave your home. Here are some of our best tips for driving virtual sales now and into the future for business.
Check-In with Clients
The very first thing you should do immediately is contact your clients, both past and present. There are several different opportunities available when you’re talking to clients to help drive sales when you can’t physically take a photo or be on location.
- Come-up with an offer or a spiff for scheduling and putting a deposit down on their Fall family session.
- Show product mock-ups using their most recent photo shoot.
- Offer your editing services for their personal photos (could be a great way to also offer more product design).
- Want even more ideas? Check out this great course by our friends at SwiftGalleries.
Publish & Sell Photography
For every beautiful Bride that has their photo taken there is a brand looking to use that photo for their website, social media, and more. If you’ve been given proper consent from clients, this could be a good opportunity to expand your brand by distributing on stock photo sites.
There are several sites that offer commissions and sales for imagery and designs including:
Drive Leads with Social Media
We’ve seen first hand the positive impact that Social Media can have on a brand. Finding your support network, biggest fans (and friends), clients and more is what awaits you and your brand on social media. The best way to start driving more traffic, without spending a penny.
- Review your last 9 posts. What was the most engaging type of content? Did your imagery flow from post to post? Establishing a good, aesthetically and visually appealing social presence takes just a bit of planning and can be executed much more quickly than posting on a daily basis. Take some time and create a social media strategy for your brand and social pages.
- Schedule your posts 1-week out, format content for Instagram Stories + Facebook, and link content to your website. Preparing your imagery in advance and using a scheduling tool is a simple way to work smarter, not harder. You’ll also be more prepared for last-minute posting and feel less stressed about posting content to your feed when you have it scheduled in advance. Need a tool? This is one of our favorites, Later Application, which allows you to schedule, post and preview your Instagram and Facebook content.
- Mix-up your content strategy, between questions for your audience, sharing tips and tricks, or even behind the scenes imagery. Organic, engaging content will deliver more authentic conversations. This will help you build a valuable, engaging audience. Include relevant and trending hashtags to get your content viewed by more people in the discovery portal.
- Engage your clients + request reviews on your Facebook page. This is a fantastic way to grow your audience organically with tried-and-true customers friends, family and more.
Become An Expert + Go Live
Starting a “series” is a great way to drive organic traffic to your social pages and website with very little effort. Several (free) tools exist to help you deliver content efficiently, including tools directly within the Facebook and Instagram platforms. This is a fantastic way to gain visibility, have some useful videos to cross-share and promote, and build your credibility. Here is how to get started:
- Create a list of topics you’re specially trained or skilled in.
- Outline a brief summary of your series and decide on a day and time you’ll go live each week.
- Invite another guest to join you each week.
- Write a short summary of each topic and include the video on a blog post.
This doesn’t have to be perfect, getting started is half the battle but worth the work you’ll put in.
Spruce-Up your Digital Brand + Services
Your online identity is the first impression you will make on a potential client, so making sure it accurately reflects you and your business is critical. Now is the time to give your website and services a face-lift! We’ve got some creative ideas to help your website and services be unforgettable.
- Update your head-shot and “About Me” section. This is the perfect place to highlight your achievements, show your more personal side and articulate your business “why” with a well written back story.
- Give your blog some TLC. Your clients love to see their own shoot post, but what about throughout the rest of the year? Set a goal to publish one or two unique, industry related posts a month. These will drive new website traffic, can be used for social posting, and will help with overall organic traffic.
- Upload your galleries with new, fresh photography. This is a sure way to drive new engagement. Don’t forget to add rich descriptions and alt-text for some added SEO.
- Add logos and tokens for any important partnerships, features, achievements and awards you’ve received in the last few years.
- Update your product packages with new, unique keepsakes that are being offered by your lab (hint: Custom USBs are now available in five unique styles).
How are you making the most of your time working from home? Do you have any tips or ideas for building your business, virtually? Share them with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.