How do photo businesses market themselves in today’s complex and connected world? Many would first say social media, and they would be right. Facebook, Instagram, and other sites have certainly changed the game when it comes to imaging industry outreach. Yet blogs and websites showcasing work also have an equal, if at times more key, role to play.
We might have seen some businesses and professionals neglect or even close their sites. We don’t think this is the path forward for most, and here are the reasons why:
Blogs Still Get More Traffic Than You Would Think
And while photo-related businesses might not necessarily get the same amount of traffic that other product or lifestyle advice blogs might get, there are still plenty of visitors that will come with the right amount of direction provided, perhaps from those quick social media posts or from business cards. WordPress blogs alone receive hundreds of millions of views per month, and there are options still beyond that.
If you’re effective with SEO, you can go even further, especially if you work in a professional niche or are competitive in a local area. There is still room for creative thinking in the space, even if you think there’s no online real estate left.
Quality, Not Quantity
If someone is on your website, it stands to reason that they are far more likely to have a genuine interest in your work and would like to know more about you and it. They sought you and your work out, and that makes them a lead that’s far more likely to take an interest in your services or sign up for your newsletter (should you have one or a similar system). It will also improve your professional networking effectiveness for the same reason: people who are interested have a far superior way of getting to know your work.
If you’re concerned about the numbers when reviewing your blog, just make sure to focus on more than just the total view count.
Your Control Is Greater
Being able to showcase what you want to showcase to a targeted audience is key to finding more fans and clients, yet an effort that strictly is based on social media might not let you have as much control as you’d like. Sorting is impossible on some sites, and an album might be given a section no bigger than a thumbnail.
With a blog or website, you can dedicate full pages to carefully curated sections, juxtapositions, targeted collections, and more. You can decide how much emphasis to put on certain aspects of your work, and you can provide whatever context you’d like without it having to be ignored. Contact information and rates can be given their own pages, and visitors won’t be distracted from your work by an endless stream of information and notifications designed to get them to look elsewhere.
Additionally, for some professionals, you won’t have to worry about censorship and breaking the guidelines of service providers. Guidelines won’t change, you have control over security, and you can keep something up as long as you’d like without it losing its impact or reach.
It Is Easier Than Ever
When the internet was still in many ways forming its pillars about ten to twenty years ago, it wasn’t necessarily easy to build an excellent site. One would either need to spend weeks to months learning to code, settle for something less than their ideal, or pay thousands of dollars for a professional site that could quickly become outdated.
This isn’t the landscape anymore and investing in a quality site isn’t so difficult. Templates and plugins are much easier to use and manage, requiring little to no technical knowledge or investment. A few hundred dollars and monthly hosting costs are likely all you’ll need. Updating your site alongside your social media profile can just be another quick step in keeping your online portfolio current.
How you market your business and showcase your work is ultimately up to you, and different people will find different paths to success. Yet here we wanted to remind you that you shouldn’t discount blogs as a main hub for your work and as an avenue for people to more easily reach you or learn more about your professional services. We hope you consider some experimentation, and that you find nothing but wonderful clients and success.
Guest post by Taylor Pendergast, Broadband Search.