Self-Promotion For Photographers: MARKETING MATERIALS
Self-Promotion for Photographers Series, 4
Aside from your website, there are going to be a number of pieces of collateral marketing materials you will want to use. Among them business cards, mailers, portfolios, letterheads, etc. Here’s some thoughts.
Make Them Rock.
When you hand someone your business card the first thing they say should not be “thank you.” It should be “Wow, great card!” or “Hey, this is cool.” Business cards traditionally do one thing – they give information. If you leave it at that you’re missing a chance to also leave an impact. Have them professionally designed, keep them focused, don’t cheap out on the card stock or the printing. Put your best foot forward.
Make Them Targeted.
Remember all that stuff in the FIRST ARTICLE about figuring out who you are, who your market is, and how to bridge the two? This is part of it. Choose a great picture that is relevant to the market you are dealing with. Create a great positioning statement – make them care. Write clean, focused, tightly edited copy.
The postcard series I created recently (above) was targeted to my primary market and the one I care most deeply about. I used some of my favourite images – photographs that reflect the benefits I bring to my market. I also used a benefit oriented statement, my logo, and a back filled with relevant, tightly written copy asking them to look at my website and consider me for assignment work.
Make Them Creative, Consistent, Congruent, and then Commit to using them for a while.
See THE FOUR PILLARS
Make Them Different
Who says your portfolio needs to be a conventional one? Who says that the mailers you send out to key clients have to be normal? You’re a creative professional, and I just know at some point you’ve broken the rule of thirds. So don’t be hemmed in by the “It’s Always Been Done This Way” police.
When I travel I get into conversations about what I do and why. Being over the Atlantic on a midnight flight to Delhi it’s not so easy to whip out a laptop and internet connection, but a 7inch self-published book of my images? I recently created one called Nomad (below) that I keep in my camera bag. Now I’m ready to show my work at a moment’s notice. The cost? $20 through BLURB.COM
Why not create some nice picture books once a year to send to clients as a thank you, or to prospective clients as a show of your work? Food Photographer? Why not create a cookbook showcasing your work? Visit a paper shop and look at their offerings – they often stock great books that would make great portfolio covers or inspire you in a different direction.
Why not make a portfolio on DVD and create a great cover that doubles as a mailer to send to prospects?
Do It Right The First Time.
Seriously. It’s worth the money. Hire a designer if design’s not your thing. Talk to your printer about your options and go with the better looking stocks and processes. I can’t stress this enough – this is a visual business and if you can’t make your stuff look hot then your prospective clients have no reason to believe you’ll make their stuff look hot.
If this series is helpful to you, I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment. If this series has sparked some ideas and you’re not sure where to turn to realize them, I’d love to talk to you about custom design work. I’m a photographer and I understand the marketing needs of photographers, I’m also a closet designer who’s been doing custom design work for a decade – feel free to send me an email (info at pixelatedimage dot com).