Intro by Skip Cohen
Bryan Caporicci and I initially met many years ago through social media. As the online friendship grew, just like his recommendation here, getting to know each other offline added a new element to our relationship. More members of the Sprouting Photographer team came into the circle, and I got to know Rob Nowell.
I appreciate the way both Bryan and Rob always walk the talk. They’re active relationship builders with other photographers, clients, and their customers. They invest time in listening and work hard to contribute to the growth of not only their own businesses but each of ours.
I pulled this post from Bryan’s archives because he’s stripped away the mystique of marketing in today’s instant fulfillment online world. I’ve split the post into two parts because there’s so much great content here, and it’s worth reading this post and thinking about your own investment in marketing.
By Bryan Caporicci
MARKETING YOUR photography business can be a tricky thing that presents a variety of challenges for entrepreneurs to consider when looking to develop a marketing mix that works for you and your business. Nowadays many entrepreneurs tend to place a majority of their marketing efforts towards online marketing. WHY? Well, the internet has done great things to help us market ourselves as photographers. Specifically, social media has made it possible for us to reach a large audience at a faster rate with more convenience.
It has become a double-edged sword though. While it’s true that you can reach more people now, the same is true for everyone else. The social media space has become very crowded and the perceived barriers to entry in becoming a “photographer”, have gone down significantly because of this.
Today let’s talk about how you can stand out offline which will help out your online brand as a result. WHY? Because often the modern-day consumer interacts with your brand offline first and then proceeds to look you up online afterward. This is what technology has allowed us to do. This is why developing a good marketing plan that involves both online and offline strategies is crucial for the success of your photography business.
Let’s talk about how you can get “back to the basics” and adapt offline components to your marketing plan that will put you a step ahead of the competition.
It is easy to overlook the importance of developing offline relationships because of the reach and interconnectivity, that social media provides. However, it is especially important to take these online connections and create meaningful offline connections. A good starting point would be to evaluate your local market and begin offline marketing within it!
Let’s quickly breakdown a few online marketing strategies that we use today and see how they translate into effective offline strategies.
- Social media
- Social networking
- Engagement on social platforms
- Content marketing on our blogs
- RT’s and @ mentions from other businesses
What would it look like if we stripped away the “online” component to these strategies?
We’re left with media, networking, engagement, content marketing and mentions from other businesses (word of mouth marketing). It’s no surprise that these are the foundations of “traditional” business marketing, and we’ve just adapted them to social media and the internet. A lot of the time, though, we’ve forgotten about the roots of where they came from. Let’s explore.
- Media is defined as the main means of mass communication (television, radio, newspapers).
- Networking means to interact with other people to exchange information and develop contacts, especially to further one’s career.
- Engagement is a marketing strategy that directly engages consumers and invites and encourages them to participate in the evolution of a brand.
- Content marketing is defined as providing consistent, high-quality content that solves people’s problems.
- Word of mouth is a marketing method that relies on social interactions to promote a product or service.