How to find clients as a freelance photographer

You have decided to start your own photography business. Congrats! This is an exciting step that can also be scary.

You are creating a business that you love. You need to be able to find clients and pay your bills.

It can be overwhelming to find clients when you are a novice photographer. You can use proven methods to find clients as a new photographer.

We’re sharing 10 tips that will help you land clients, as well as common mistakes made by newbie photographers:

Ten Tips to Land New Clients

To be a successful freelance photographer, you must make time for marketing and networking.

Set aside a time for marketing to help you land (and retain) clients.

  • Reach out to new potential clients every week, or every month, depending on the needs of your business.
  • Content for your business
  • Get in touch with former clients
  • Make sure to update your portfolio with the most recent samples to reflect your best work.

It will be easier to find clients if you create a system. These are 10 ways to make it easy for clients to find you again.

Refer friends and family by word of mouth

Your family and friends are your strongest network.

They want you to succeed but can only help you if they know about your business. It doesn’t have to feel awkward or pushy to discuss your photography business.

Tell your family and friends about the business.

  • You can post about your business on your social media platforms
  • Provide periodic updates about recent business developments, such as new services and posting a photograph you love
  • You can share helpful tips for photography with your family and friends on social media.

Although it is helpful to talk about your business occasionally, it shouldn’t be the only topic you discuss. Friends and family want to know about all the other things happening in your life.

Establish relationships with clients

Consider the last time you looked for a hairdresser, a dentist, or a doctor. Did you pick someone randomly from an ad, or did you choose them? You most likely asked your friends to tell you what they liked and then chose a person.

It is easier to find a client if they have been referred by someone you trust, like, or respect.

Although you cannot control whether or not a client has recommended you to them, you can increase your chances of it happening.

  • Quality service at all times
  • Keep in touch with clients via email or social media.
  • A reminder postcard was sent to clients to remind them about booking a photo session for holidays or special events. The request was to ask them to forward the information to a friend.

Partner with photographers and related businesses

Begin conversations with businesses that could benefit from your services or who serve your ideal client if you are a wedding photographer, network with local caterers and wedding planners.

They can also send their clients to you, which can be mutually beneficial. Your services may also be needed to refresh their marketing materials or website.

There is always a business out there that can benefit from your expertise, no matter what. Before you partner with a company, make sure they are true to your business values.

Donate to schools or charity auctions

You can build your leads and increase awareness by donating to schools and charities auctions. You will be giving away the gift package, but this can often lead to paid work.

The person who purchased your services via auction might decide to upgrade or add additional services. People who don’t win your package may still choose to purchase it.

Start by contacting schools and charities you are familiar with or searching for “Silent Auction [your town]”. You will be able to find organizations that offer your service or serve your target clientele.

Create a valuable package that allows the winner to upgrade the package during the shoot.

Participate as a speaker at local groups

Professional photographers have a wealth of knowledge that other people want to learn. It’s a fun way to connect with people in your area.

Choose organizations that cater specifically to your client. Focus on local moms groups and new moms at hospitals if you offer family photo sessions.

You might also be interested in the following types of groups:

  • Chambers of Commerce
  • Business networking groups
  • Church groups
  • Service clubs and organizations
  • Parent-Teacher Associations
  • Public libraries

Make a professional website

Potential clients want to easily learn more about you and view samples of your work. Easy-to-use, professional websites can build trust with potential clients and make it easier to close the deal.

Your areas of expertise should be grouped in your portfolio so that visitors can easily find the content they are looking for. Your portfolio page should only include the best pieces. Make it easy for prospects and clients to schedule appointments.

A blog can be added to your website to increase authority and trust, and search engine optimization (SEO). You should keep a blog updated regularly. Choose topics that appeal to your target audience.

Join social media groups

You can connect with industry professionals and potential clients through social media groups. Select one or two areas where you are most likely to reach your target audience using social media to find new clients.

You should set aside time to answer questions and participate in discussions. This will help group members recognize you.

There are also groups for freelance photographers that you can join. These groups will help you make connections with other freelancers and provide an opportunity to ask questions and get answers. As you establish relationships, these groups can be a great source of referrals.

Ask local businesses for a display of your work.

You don’t have to leave business cards at your local businesses. Instead, ask if you could hang some of your photos. You can either provide framed photos of your portfolio or create new photographs for the business for a small fee.

Hanging photos should be easy for customers to find your name and contact information. Also, if possible, leave your business cards near to the display.

Send images to stock photography companies.

Are you a photographer with many great photos that you own copyrights? Your images could be submitted to stock photo agencies.

While you can be paid for your work, you also have the opportunity to be noticed by businesses. Check the policies of the stock agency before you sign up. This will help you determine what you’ll get paid and if you retain copyright.

Create your email list

Email marketing is a great way to grow small businesses. Email marketing is used by 81 percent to convert prospects into customers.

Because almost everyone uses email, email lists can be powerful tools. Potential customers are more likely than social media posts to see your emails. Unlike social media, where rules and algorithms can change suddenly, you completely control your email list.

While it can take some time for your email to grow, you don’t necessarily need to reach thousands of people to have a successful list.

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