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  2. Marketing

A List of Portrait Clients Who Want to Hire you in the Fourth Quarter!

Intro by Skip Cohen

Sarah Petty totally knocks another one out of the park with a list of 37 people who, if you put on your marketing hat, are ready to hire you right now. She’s done everything but make the call for you!

She’s also hitting on a personal pet peeve of mine. There’s so much business out there, but it’s harder than ever to get through the noise and reach the right clients. So often what seems to happen is a photographer tries a new approach, doesn’t get the anticipated response, and then walks away thinking business just isn’t there.

Years ago, in my Polaroid days, the analysts used to say you have to hit a consumer 2 ½ times for them to remember you and your product. Today, depending on who you listen to, that number is 10-15 times. Why? Because there’s so much noise in our lives.

Think about how much email and snail mail you throw out and never read. That means you can never slow down on doing things to build your brand awareness. Now, think about the holidays coming up.

Yes, I realize it’s still summer, but we all know how fast the hands of the clock spin when you’re procrastinating!

by Sarah Petty

If your business is slower than you’d like it to be, it’s time to pick up a pen and write some notes, pick up the phone and make a few calls, pick up a few new portrait photography clients and pick up the pace of your business.

There are dozens of future portrait photography clients in your community. You know them, they know you. But they can’t hire you if they haven’t been offered the opportunity.

Today, I’m going to introduce you to 37 of your future clients and help pave the way for your next portrait session.

Somebody wants to hire you over the holidays!

The holidays are an emotional, family-filled time of year. Extended families are in town or on their way. The holidays create a time for family photos.

Now is the time to think about how you can reach out and ask for the opportunity to be their family photographer. Remember, people are going to be buying photography – all around the holidays. And they want to hire a photographer they know, someone they have done business with in the past.

But how do you pick the right person to contact? And what do you say? Here’s the list, and below we’ll walk you through some simple steps to get them in front of your camera.

37 people you can reach out to for portrait clients right now

(Print this list!)

  1. Dentist
  2. Orthodontist
  3. Ob/Gyn
  4. Financial planner
  5. Realtor
  6. Pampered Chef Rep
  7. Make-up (Mary Kay)
  8. Insurance agent
  9. Hair salon
  10. Spa owner
  11. Veterinarian
  12. Groomer
  13. Pet Boarder
  14. Doggie Daycare Center owner
  15. Attorney
  16. Gymnastics center owner
  17. Medical spa owner
  18. Pediatrician
  19. Banker
  20. Car dealer
  21. Dermatologist
  22. Restaurant owner
  23. Interior Designer
  24. Clothing store owner
  25. Accountant
  26. Chiropractor
  27. Jeweler
  28. Optometrist
  29. Fitness center owner
  30. Florist
  31. Wedding/prom boutique owner
  32. Golf course owner
  33. Reception / events venue owner
  34. Homebuilder
  35. Developer
  36. Tutoring center owner
  37. Remodeling contractor

What is the best way to reach your next portrait photography client?

A phone call? Social media? A note in the mail? An Email?

Your preferred method depends on a few factors.

  • How well do you know them and in what context? Are you an acquaintance, a patient, a regular customer or just a casual shopper?
  • What is their schedule like? Are they in appointments all day, are they at a computer, are they out of the office a lot?
  • How quickly do you want to be booked? If you’d like to book them quickly, try the phone first.

Emails are easy to ignore or delete. And they don’t feel personal. I save that as a last resort. The same can be true for social media. It feels like an afterthought or can feel lazy.

But a phone call or handwritten note is harder to ignore and more personal of a contact that cuts through the clutter.

I prefer to pick up the phone or drop a note in the mail.

I use social media to see what they are up to in their life so I have something to connect with them about before I make the call.

I recently reached out to a local real estate agent. I saw on social media that her family was doing some really cool stuff so I approached her with an idea for images of her family that she could tie back to marketing her business. She loved it and we’re working on it now.

That’s just one example of how easy this is! She wasn’t even MY real estate agent, but I knew her casually.

It really is that easy when you say the right thing an approach them with a great idea.