Are there really free ways to grow your photography business? Yes, yet, there is always a cost. Chances are your time is more abundant than cash when starting or attempting to grow your business. If you consider your time free, than you will find the following seven free business ideas valuable – if you take action.
Eventually you will need to invest cash into your business to keep growing. Once you start earning enough money you can hire people to help or buy marketing and adverting services.
1) Facebook sharing: Share your images on Facebook, it’s a good place to start getting the word out about your photography. The people who follow you on Facebook like and trust you. These are the people most likely to share your good work. Tag people who have hired you so they can share a few low res images with their friends too.
2) Local Networking: Business is about people. The more people you meet and develop relationships with, the more opportunities will come your way. Everyone has the potential to offer a referral. It doesn’t matter what their profession – they know people you don’t. Some of these people can use your services. Educate the people you network with and teach them what to look for when talking to people they know.
3) Write: It’s costing me nothing but time to write this blog post. Over time thousand of people will see it. Most important, this post will support people in my community and industry looking for helpful information. At the same time it supports keeping my name in public circulation. The best benefit for my business is search engine optimization. I make a lot of money by making it easy for people to find me when they need a photographer or digital marketing support. Look beyond your personal blog, connect with editors and submit your writing to online and offline media. If consistently done well, submitted articles will help to develop more trust in you and your business.
4) Speak: Put together a slide show of your work. Practice sharing the stories behind the images and then offer to present your show to local (or national) organizations. Becoming a speaker helps increase your authority as an expert in your field. For more information on presenting well check out presentation zen.
5) Public Relations: There is nothing wrong with a little old school PR. Develop a one page press release when you have something noteworthy to announce or share. Submit your release to newspapers, radio, magazines, TV, blogs and online media. Ask to visit industry podcasts to share information on a relevant topic. If you don’t have anything to share; create something like an exhibit, special event or develop a new way to support a cause.
6) Volunteer: This opportunity is similar to networking. For a volunteer, direct networking takes a back seat to the more important task of supporting a good cause. Still, I’m often rewarded with excellent opportunities that develop by connecting with other volunteers.
7) Champion others: If you want to do well in business, social media and as a citizen of the world — become a fan of other people. Connect good people who you think will benefit knowing each other, let people know how much you appreciate them and share their work. I’m always amazed how being an active supporter of the people and world around me creates new valuable opportunities.
This post is dedicated to Jay Zitter who passed July 22, 2015. She was a true fan of this blog and my work. Jay was also my Aunt. She was a fan of all her children and the cousins in our family. Jay often sent me notes and supportive comments about my blog, such as, “I love how your mind works. I so enjoy reading your blogs. Keep up the inspiring yet practical approach! 🙂 Hugs, Aunt Jay”. That note was emailed a couple months ago in response to my post – How I create business proposals. She explored life to its fullest, supported many and will be missed by all.