Effective Online Presence Tips | How To Brand A Photography Business – Part 2: Five Ways You Can Improve Your Online Presence
Effective Online Presence Tips | The modern-day photographer is more blessed than ever having an incredible selection of social media networking tools at his or her fingertips. Platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, DeviantART, Flickr, as well as online forums and blogs enable photographers not only to build up their own online presence, but also to connect to the rest of the photographic community.
However, in just the past few years, photography has become incredibly popular as a hobby, with technology in hands of pretty much everyone. The proliferation of smartphones has turned anyone with access to an iPhone into an armchair photographer ready and willing to share each and every picture of their cat they take, no matter how mundane or irrelevant it may be. While that’s great for everyday folks who want to share memories with their family and friends, professional photographers trying to market and sell their services and products often find it challenging to stand out among the scores of people sharing images online. The following are five simple ways for photographers to improve their online presence and grow their businesses.
Create A Portfolio Website | Effective Online Presence Tips
The first item on our list of creating your online presence is your website. Use the name of your photography business as the domain name for your website, making it easy for potential clients to find you through search engines and to connect with you. Not sure you really need a portfolio website? The US Small Business Administration released data showing that only 51% of small businesses have a website. Compare that to the 97% of consumers searching for products and services online, and you can see why having a website is vitally important for the success of your business.
Sign Up | Effective Online Presence Tips
One of the quickest ways to help in the game of being found is to be lots of places. Even if you’re not sure you’re ready to spend significant time engaging in a bunch of social networks, you should make the time to claim and build strong profiles and place and optimize content and brand assets on these platforms. Sign up for accounts on 500px, Flickr, Google+, Instagram and Facebook. You don’t have to sign up for absolutely all of them, but having a presence on several online photo-sharing websites is important to put the word out there for the world to see.
Automate Publishing | Effective Online Presence Tips
With tools like IFTTT or Hootsuite, you can automate repetitive publishing. Simply sign up for an account, and set up some of the rules. For example, when sharing a picture to Instagram, you can also publish it to Flickr. Or, when you post a blog post on Tumblr, republish the images to Flickr. Now, you don’t want everything to be identical across all the social networks; instead, you’ll want to adapt the content to each network and its requirements, while keeping the same tone of voice and look and feel throughout.
Engage Your Audience | Effective Online Presence Tips
The Internet may be vast, but that vastness provides plenty of opportunities for professional photographers to share their knowledge and build their reputations as established experts. For example, if you are just starting in photography, you’ve probably been learning some new skills recently. The best way to engage your followers and fans is to share your knowledge — write a blog post about what you’ve learned — rules of thirds, golden ratio, some Lightroom tricks, and share it to your social networks.
SEO Is An Important Piece Of The Puzzle, Too | Effective Online Presence Tips
One of the easiest ways to be found online is through search engines. This, however, can only happen if you write content and create pages that match what your ideal clients are searching for online. Dealing with search engine optimization just isn’t as appealing or interesting as taking stunning pictures, and we’re sure you didn’t become a professional photographer just so you could learn all the gory details of SEO, right? That’s okay.
The Google Keyword tool is a great starting point if you want to start with at least finding out what keywords you want your website to rank for. SEO is all about sprinkling keywords everywhere and getting links, so make sure you not only include the keywords in your blog posts, but in the ALT tags of the images you upload to your portfolio.