Marketing Collateral Basics | Marketing Collateral Items No Photographer Should Live Without!
Marketing Collateral Basics | When launching a photography business, many photographers get distracted by getting those shiny new lenses, or setting up a brand new website that they forget one simple fact – in order to run a fully functioning business, you’ll need much more than just a website and an email address. To remain competitive, you’ll need to be able to communicate your unique selling point, the nature of your brand and ultimately your intended message to your potential clients.
The way you communicate with your potential clients is just as important as the message you’re trying to communicate – so much so, in fact, that the success of your business depends on it! Sure, you already have Twitter and Facebook pages all set up for your business, but what about marketing collateral such as business cards, letterhead, brochures, press releases, email template, and other digital and printed promotional materials? To help you hit the ground running, we prepared a list of items every photographer should have in the office at all times!
Your Website Is The Central Hub Of Your Marketing Strategy | Marketing Collateral Basics
While we’ll be focusing mostly on printed marketing collateral today, there’s one thing you simply can’t afford to ignore – your portfolio website. Think about it, from your business cards to the brochures and printed ads will feature your website’s URL, which means you need your website to grab the attention of your potential clients the moment they land there, show them what you can do for them and persuade them to hire you. What are most important elements of effective portfolio websites that do exactly that?
You’ll definitely want to showcase a selection of your work there, so limit the selection to only the best pictures – don’t upload every picture you ever took. A carefully curated portfolio will be much more effective than a hundred of random pictures. However, you’ll also want to make sure your contact details are featured either in the footer or the header of each page, so your potential clients can’t get hold of you the moment they decide they’re ready to hire you!
Business Cards Are Your Best Friends | Marketing Collateral Basics
No business owner is ready to face the world without a stack of professionally designed business cards. Don’t get us wrong, engaging your potential clients on social media is a great idea, but what about the potential clients and business cards you meet during a conference or a networking event? Handing out a business card during a meeting is a tried and tested custom, and they can not only provide potential clients with your contact details, but can reinforce your brand and boost awareness. Try not to use off-the-shelf business card templates, though – you’re a part of a creative industry and every piece of your collateral package should show that, including your business cards!
Thank You Cards Can Boost Your Business | Marketing Collateral Basics
Great customer service doesn’t end once you deliver the product to your clients. In order to build a lasting relationship with your clients, make sure you have a set of custom thank you cards you can include with the USB you mail out to your clients. They’re not only a nice gesture, but they can also boost your business. Think about it, once a client receives custom package with a beautiful thank you card, they won’t resist but share it on Instagram, giving you that much needed, yet completely free, exposure.
Bring Your Packaging Into The 21st Century | Marketing Collateral Basics
While we’re on the subject of delivering goods to your clients, when was the last time you took a look at the complete package with a critical eye? Does the paper you use to wrap the box match your brand’s colors? Is the quality of the materials used up to the standards of the products and services you’re providing? Humans are a tactile group, which means the quality of the paper you use can be the critical difference between coming off as an established professional and a complete amateur.
Turn your packaging into an immersive brand showcase – customize not only the thank you cards, but also the USB drives you use to deliver the pictures, use your brand’s colors and fonts, and of course, feature that stunning logo of yours on each item, including your custom letterhead and the envelopes to create a cohesive presentation of your professionalism.
Gift Certificates And Discount Coupons Will Get Potential Client Knocking On Your Door | Marketing Collateral Basics
At the end of the day, photographers book more clients through the word of mouth marketing than any other way – that’s because the modern consumer relies heavily on recommendations from their friends and people they trust, which is why you’ll want to offer an incentive to your existing clients that has a high perceived value, but doesn’t cost you much in exchange for referrals.
What many photographers overlook, however, is that other business owners that offer non-competing services to your target audience can be a great source of referrals as well. If you’re a wedding photographer, for example, take a professional shot of the wedding cake and send it to the cake decorator, as well as a dozen of gift certificates they can hand out to their clients. It’s a win-win situation – they’ll be getting a stunning picture of their product, and you’ll be getting free exposure and endless stream of potential clients.