Self-Promotion For Photographers: FOUR PILLARS
Self-Promotion for Photographers Series, 2
THE FOUR PILLARS – CREATIVITY, CONGRUENCY, CONSISTENCY, COMMITMENT
Yesterday’s article covered the beginning of your identity and branding. Parallel to that thinking, consider the four following pillars of marketing for creatives.
As a creative professional your marketing should be creative. Everything you do, every piece you send, is a reflection on you. If your marketing is creative it speaks very clearly to your own creativity. Don’t mistake this for being clever or creativity for appearance’s sake, but approach your market creatively and in ways that reflect who you are. Most design magazines and some photo mags like PDN do anual self-promotion issues that showcase the best of the year’s self-promotional efforts in the industry, a read through one of these can be very inspirational.
If your marketing is the communication of your identity and benefits to your marketplace then every initiative needs to be congruent with who you are, and the market to whom you are selling yourself. In other words, your website must jive with who you are, and who you say you are to your potential clients.
Similar to Congruency, which is matching your marketing to your identity, Consistency requires you match your marketing materials to each other. Every piece, each initiative, should look like it came from the same place. This is a big part of your branding mojo. Volvo is so consistent I recently saw an advert on TV and within the first 5 seconds identified it as a Volvo advert – simply by the font used. Consistency builds familiarity and confidence, it is a repetition of design conventions like fonts, colours, styles, that make you more memorable to the market. Large companies have a strict branding guide to make sure this happens. It outlines which logos can be used where, which versions of the logo are unacceptable, which fonts to use for headlines, which fonts to use for body copy, and so on. Deviation dilutes the branding effort and creates confusion.
Stick it out. Marketing isn’t magic, it doesn’t happen overnight. Create a good plan, then stick it out for a year. Repetition and familiarity build confidence and top-of-mind awareness with your potential clients. Swtiching your logo every two months is a bad idea; it defeats the purpose of having a logo at all. Switching strategies mid-stream is equally damaging. If you start a mailing campaign of six mailings over a year, don’t scrap it when mailing number one goes out the door and the phone doesn’t start ringing. Clients usually need to see your stuff several times before you get the call. Come up with a well-thought-out marketing plan, then stick with it and give it a chance.
If this series is helpful I’d love to hear from you. If you’re looking for marketing help and don’t know where to get it I have been coaching creatives in their marketing for years and would love to discuss your needs with you. Leave a comment or drop me an email (link at top left of page.)