Self-Promotion For Photographers: WORD-OF-MOUTH
Self-Promotion for Photographers Series, 7
We’ve all heard it said the Word-Of-Mouth advertising is the best. But have we made it an intentional part of our marketing plan – a consistent action point that we’ve built into our client-care?
The ideas in this article flow naturally from the previous article. If you’re doing your job right and living up to the hype of your own PR, then you know already know what it means to “wow” the client so much that they talk about you long after the session is over and the contract is done.
This “wow” factor needs to be a proactive, intentional effort. Even if you’re good at it now, you can always be better. The more “wow” they leave with, the more they’ll be inclined to pass on your name. But can you increase the chances of this happening? You betcha.
MAKE IT EASY
Make it easy for your clients to get the word out – give them materials, business cards, etc. You’re already planning on sending a thank you card of some sort, right? Why not include some busines cards and ask your client to pass them out like candy? If you give them the materials, they’re much more likely to speak highly of you and pass out your cards.
MAKE IT BENEFICIAL
Make it beneficial to them. They already have a reason to recommend you, but they might need a reminder once in a while – a little extra push to get out there and proactively promote you. If you get a referal, send them a gift certificate and a thank you card. Or movie passes, or a framed print you know will look great in their office and generate converations. Or a nice coffee table book.
You could also offer an incentive/referral plan. A referral gets existing clients $X discounted from their next shoot. Or it gets them a $50 gift certificate from Starbucks. Be creative, but be sure to go above-and-beyond. After-all how much does it cost to acquire one new client?
The idea of making it beneficial is to take a client who might otherwise recommend you passively, into a client who will be a little more intentional about it.
MAKE IT LAST
Ask clients who have had a particularily good experience with you to put it in writing. It’s one thing to write glowing copy on your website, it’s another thing to use someone else’s words. Getting it in writing extends the shelf-life and reach of word-of-mouth marketing.
Word-Of-Mouth marketing is based on a simple facet of human nature – we trust our friends before we trust a stranger. The claims a client makes about you carry more weight than any claims you can make about yourself – for good or for bad. So wow them. Knock their socks off. Give them way, way more than they expected. And then make it easy for them to spread the good news, make it beneficial, and make it last.
This is your last chance to get in on the final installment of the Self Promotion series. If you have questions, ask them. If you have a website or self-promotional effort you want to show off, tell us about it. If you have a brief story to tell or a blog to tell us about – now’s the time. Just make sure it relates to the subject at hand. Blogs about your cat will not make the list. Unless your cat has questions about promoting her photography business.