You marketing vs. them marketing

(Last Updated On: March 10, 2009)

As a photographer you have a number of choices to make when planning your social marketing.  The first thing every photographer should ask is: Are my marketing efforts going to focus on me or them?

Displaying the portfolio is a major part of marketing for a photographer. Often a photographer’s first instinct is to create a blog about who he is and his work.   This effort is often rewarded with clients gaining a deeper insight, understanding and loyalty toward the photographer.

Although rewards may be found with the more common “you marketing,” the more powerful form of marketing is “them marketing,” which offers information and guidance to prospects and clients.  This is an effective public relations marketing application. This sets you up as the expert. 

This doesn’t mean you can’t use your images as examples. Actually, it is highly encouraged. But, the focus is not on the photographer.  The goal is to champion others and build a reputation as a quality resource for knowledge and inspiration.

First you need to develop a niche.  Find out what is working on a national level or in other regions and localize it. 

For example, a photographer could offer a resource for local models, create a community for designers, architects or small business people.  Whatever you do, make sure photography is part of the solution.

Remember, prospects are more concerned about looking good, selling more products and services than your service.  Your photographs may be appealing to them, but if they don’t understand the benefits of using quality imagery over “good enough” digital files than your beautiful portfolio is wasted.  Educating future photography buyers on the merits of quality photography will offer new opportunity for more business.


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