As a senior editor at SLR Lounge, I have the good fortune of sitting from a perch with a wide view of our industry. I see libraries worth of work, from masses of creators – the good, bad, and ugly – and a persistent theme throughout is how inadequately adept most photographers are at business and marketing. Now, this isn’t entirely surprising given the whole ‘artist’ stereotype, but none want to be the type that starves, so some business acumen is necessary.
That acumen has costs though, and that’s largely time. With it comes the notion that you need to market your business, and that too can be costly. So what usually happens? Well, put it this way, watching most photographers approach marketing is like watching a foal take its initial steps; just a bit of a fumbling mess.
Typically we’ll see photographers spend a lot of money and time with mistaken steps because they don’t really know what to do, or others don’t have a large budget and assume there’s no point and do nothing. Photographer and educator Jeff Rojas, has just put together a short video detailing how to market your work for under $50, and it’s not simply a list of things to print and buy, but also to think and do.
He addresses the idea of being personable, perhaps joining some inexpensive organizations, authoring for blogs, and more. It’s well worth the 5 minutes, or so the video will take to view, and Jeff doesn’t beat around the bush, nor stand on ceremony, so it’s very easy to digest.
If I could add something else to the mix, I would say that I’m seeing great things happen for photographers or creatives in general who combine their time and work, even as a joint venture only for a single project. What often gets created is typically more original and, of course, the audience of two is better than one. I would also suggest that everyone get a grip on SEO. It’s one of those things that isn’t a pleasure, but provides trackable results. It is more important than you may know. You can see how we here at SLRL and Lin & Jirsa Photography do SEO here.
There’s more of Jeff’s to be found here, and certainly worth a look.