5 Best Practices for Using Social Media to Attract Website Visitors

5 Best Practices for Using Social Media to Attract Website Visitors

Hold on just one second.

Before you skip to tips for attracting visitors to your website, it’s important to understand why attracting visitors to your website is valuable in the first place.

The common misconception among businesses using social media is that being popular equates to making money. It canbe profitable, I guess, but only if your profitabiity is calculated using total number of friends, fans and likes.

Chances are you haven’t figured out how to do that. (Let me know if you do!)

Until then, we’ll have to accept the truth that being successful on social media means much more than simply showing up and being liked. If you’re trying to make money for your business using social media, then your goal should be to attract visitors to your website.

Two primary principles shape our social media philosophy (and our marketing philosophy as a whole). In addition to applying the best practices introduced in this article, you can use these principles …

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How to Show Clients the Value of Professional Photographic Prints

how-to-show-clients-the-value-of-professional-photographic-prints

Are your clients getting their prints from the same place they get shampoo?

Enjoying photographs on your iPad, phone, or computer is nice. However, it’s the final print that matters most. Making an image look great on screen is art. Making the same image look great in print is another kind of art.

As a photographer, I often struggle with how to best showcase my work. After all, 90 percent of art lies in presentation. Fine-art printing, I’ve discovered, is a blend of art and science… not much different than photography itself.

Why work with a Pro Lab?

When it comes to printing, I tell myself: “Do what you do best, and delegate the rest.” I’m a photographer, not a master print technician. There are people who print better than I can, which is why I’m happy to outsource this important part of my business to experts.

The last thing I want is a disappointed …

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4 Tips for Creating Blog Content that Generates Qualified Traffic

4 Tips for Creating Blog Content that Generates Qualified Traffic

If you want to generate qualified leads, you’ve got to start driving qualified traffic to your website. After all, leads don’t just appear out of nowhere! (Although, that’d be nice.)

How do you generate qualified website traffic? You guessed it…by consistently publishing content on your blog!

To truly find success generating qualified traffic through blogging, it’s important to tailor content to your target market. This way, your blog articles are relevant, compelling AND come up in search engines when your target audience is searching.

1. Identify Specific Buyer Personas

The first step to creating content that generates qualified traffic is understanding what qualified means to you. What is the “right” traffic? Create buyer personas to help you identify the traits that the right visitors have that you want to attract.

As a photography business offering services to consumers, you must identify the specific person you want to sell to, as well as the people who are the decision-makers.

For example, …

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How to Track New Client Inquiries with ShootQ

how-to-track-new-client-inquiries-with-shootq

Managing leads in a studio can be difficult: multiple clients to track, responses to send, and information flying everywhere! Winning a wedding or portrait client’s business is a big deal – so what’s the best way to get them to sign on the (electronic) dotted-line? First you have to get their attention, and keep it!

I’ve heard multiple times from brides that a quick response is greatly appreciated, and the smartest sales tool out there is the art of the follow-up! How can you get both?

ShootQ Lead Workflows help you easily manage your leads, respond quickly with the click of a button, and maintain communication with your promising inquiries.

ShootQ has the capability of managing your leads in a simple lead “bucket” system. I always encourage my ShootQ clients to use the categories that have been set up for them as much as possible. It can be easy to forget who is …

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Free Guide: Social Media for Grownups

The Professional Photographer's Guide to Social Media

Social media must be some sort of marketing magic.

I mean, all you have to do is show up and start talking to gain followers and rake in cash, right?

Wrong! Social media isn’t magic. It’s just another tool in your online marketing arsenal that – when used correctly – helps you reach business goals.

How do you do it correctly? Start by developing a social media plan.

In this free guide, Social Media for Grownups, we’ll walk you through the process of creating a strategic social media roadmap.

We’ll cover:

Identifying SMART goals Understanding your target audience Developing an action plan Avoiding common social media pitfalls

So what are you waiting for? Take the first step to becoming a social media guru.

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A Simple Wedding Workflow Checklist

A Simple Wedding Workflow Checklist for Professional Photographers

You’ve just finished shooting an amazing ten hour wedding. Two cameras, perhaps even a second shooter. Total clicks are in the range of 3k-5k. Even though you’re on such a high, in the back of your mind you’re thinking, “ugh this is going to be such a long edit!”

Monday morning comes around and you start culling, but then your inbox starts filling up, Facebook is calling your name, and the dog is barking at you. What do you do?

As professional photographers, we’ve all been in this situation before. You need help. That’s exactly why I created this wedding workflow checklist. Feel free to use any or all of it to help you stay streamlined.

1. Download cards – 1 hour I personally don’t cull as I download, although I know a few photographers who do. Once downloaded, I point Aperture to the images on my computer, as this leads to the fastest workflow.

2. First-Round …

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How to Increase Brand Awareness Using Blogging

How to Increase Brand Awareness for Your Photography Business Using Blogging

If you haven’t heard, blogging is one of your greatest advertisements. (Actually, we think it’s even better than traditional advertising. Seriously.)

But while there’s huge potential for your blog to be your greatest tool to increase brand awareness, there are also A LOT of blogs out there. So how do you effectively use your blog to help more people get to know your brand?

1. Create offers. An offer is the most effective path for lead generation and your blog is a great place to share these offers and build buzz around them. Offers are premium pieces of content that your reader can get for free in exchange for his or her contact information. Offers are designed to guide your reader through your sales funnel and are the most effective way to turn a lead into a paying customer. Offers shouldn’t be product-centric (meaning focused only on the benefit of your product or service) but …

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What are Professional Photographers Really Selling?

what-are-professional-photographers-really-selling

Let’s clear our minds for a minute.

Think about the things that influence us. Maybe it’s the lustrous elements from our daily routines that are full of inspiration and creativity? So many things sway our thoughts, right? Commercials convince us to call NOW and “GET ONE FREE!” The guy that dances on the corner with a $5 pizza sign beckons us to “come get the freshest, hottest pie in town!”

We see so many things in “lights” trying to sell us something – trying to get us to buy into something – but how many of those bright, sparkly things truly help us understand the products, services and benefits?

As photographers, we want clients to “buy in” to what we offer; everything from our brand’s luster to our products. When we offer photography services, people are excited about the photos. They view our blog, tag themselves, and share on social media. They right-click …

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How to Create a Pre-Shoot Guide for Portrait Shoots

How to Create a Pre-Shoot Guide for Photography Clients

The reality is, no matter what information we send to clients to prepare for their shoot, we can’t make them read every word. As much as we want our photography clients to thoroughly understand (and care about) our creative process, some of them are willing to wing-it. Even if we send them great guidance in advance, they tend to skim it for topics they’re curious about. This is why, in the last eight years, my “Pre-Shoot Guide” has evolved from a clever, colorful 4-page PDF into to a brief, persuasive email with a link to a short-and-sweet six paragraph, bullet-pointed Pre-Shoot Guide page on my website.

Before I book, much of my process is conveyed to clients through my website, during the initial phone consultation and emails. But my Pre-Shoot Guide is reading material intended to set expectations for the actual family portrait photography session.

My Pre-Shoot Guide …

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One Photographer’s Journey from Part-Time to Full-Time

CreativeMphoto engagement

When I started my part-time professional photography career, in the days of film photography (2001), I didn’t have higher aspirations to become a full-time photographer. I already had a full-time job in the corporate world, so I was perfectly content photographing on the side, especially since photography income was not paying my bills.

There’s a very different mindset for someone who does something on the side (and makes extra income) versus someone who does photography full-time. It’s not just the obvious things, like more expenses, etc. I think it’s also the way you think about photography – not just as a hobby, but as a business. As a full-time photographer, all the decisions you make affect what you do as a photographer.

The thing is, as a part-time photographer, I wasn’t seeking work. It just came to me. I was working for another studio, assisting with wedding and commercial jobs as well …

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