Targeting Niche Markets: Weddings


Marketing Your Photography Business


Lesson Info

Targeting Niche Markets: Weddings

Weddings here are some ideas that you can start implementing almost immediately for your business start partnering with vendors we've got to start working with them reach out to them if you didn't do it yesterday, give me a reason why you haven't already written down five vendors that you can reach out to almost immediately in your area, just off the top. Your head, you don't even have to go run a google search if you're in the wedding business and you don't know five vendors in your area, I would make the argument you might not be in the wedding business, so you've got to know who the players are in your market. Reach out to these people, get them going and start going out to launch. Stop by have leave, you know, leave behind products for them on get everything going. Sign it at flyers sign it and flyers at jewelers now this is something a lot of companies or photographers are already trying to do so you've gotta work this relationship. Why not offer a free engagement shoot with the p...

urchase of an engagement ring? Okay, there's, a lot of jewelers already doing this it's a value at its service for their clients right now, you might be thinking yourself, why would I want to shoot their engagement session for free? First of all, a, you're not making the money on the engagement session that's not where you're making your money on the session if you're making it on the sale of the products. Secondly, they just got engaged, there's no way they have a wedding photographer yet. So if you do a good job, there's a high probability they're going to book you if you do this, let's, take it a step further. Why not create some sort of flyer that you leave behind? And it explains to the groom, right? We're not the smartest guys in the world. It explains to us that once they get to this engagement ring, why not hire you to photograph? Not necessarily the engagement session, the proposal? How could that be to document the proposal? Here's the thing, and this is what I did, so I think I'm a kind of a smart guy, so when I got engaged, my photographer is michael course in tino is out of san francisco, I hired him on I didn't even tell him because I didn trust him not to spill the beans to my wife, but I didn't tell him that I was going to propose to her on the photo shoot, so as photographers, right, we want a photo shoot, and, you know, we're I usually don't get pictures taken of ourselves that all that often because we're doing it for everybody else so I wanted something of she and I san francisco is one of our favorite cities and so we're on this photo shoot and I let him know what's about to happen in five minutes just so he set up I pull out that ring and all of a sudden he captures everything right? So I pull out that ring we're standing there opposing we're doing our thing I get the ring out I get the ring toe like here and taylor's like I do and that's exactly what happened I didn't get to say a single word on I told her I'm like no no no you can't accept just yet I said I've been practicing this for about two weeks, right? So I had what I wanted to say to her and I want to make sure I got it out but he documented the whole thing so of course in our home one of our favorite pictures is taylor with her hands over her mouth when she sees the rain it's just this amazing moment for us how valuable is that? So don't you say I'm the photograph your engagement session give them an idea that late in pain that we talk about give them an idea on what to do with this hey guys, you got this free photo session photo session. Let me document your proposal. Tell them why show them some samples. Okay, now I know getting the first one's going to be tough, but that flyer what a great idea! What a great way to document it for him. And now you're part of one of the most intimate moments of their new life together. Okay? Because you've documented that for them and it's priceless man is absolutely priceless to taylor myself. And we looked back across all our images that's one of our most favourite images, because that's where it all began, right? And she was really lucky that I asked her no, I'm in trouble all the ladies out there throwing darts at the screen right now, and taylor is burning a hole in my head. No, it was the beginning of some. I'm kidding around, of course was beginning beginning of our life together, and that moment means the most to me a cz you can possibly imagine so let's keep going with what about trading for names? What about photographing jewelry in exchange for the names of people who are buying engagement rings, right? Not every jeweler is going to be open to that, but maybe over time they will be, because how, how valuable would it be for you to get a list of engagement names? As quickly as possible so that you can drop something in the mail to them so you can put a postcard together and as you're getting these names coming in, you're sending out a postcard to them well, every jeweler agree to doing something like that of course not work the relationship it's all about relationships and what's the trade the trade is I'm going to photograph all your jewellery for your marketing pieces, right? So if you're gonna invest that kind of time that's your payback you're getting this list of names this allows you to be proactive and go after list verse in there right in the reverse if you're waiting for them to contact you to redeem that coupon the groom may or may not contact you the bride may or may not contact you, so you just need a way to to kind of work through this so that you can get leads bridal shows of course I'm not going to drill into bridal shows, but I'm giving you the blueprint I asked you you girls earlier I said what's standing in the way right and gentlemen what's standing in the way off you getting to where you want to be and so here's how you're going to get there right, jules? We talked you're like I'm an eleven I want toby or you're at nine you want toby at twenty, correct twenty five now so did you target twenty to twenty five that's your stretch goal okay so you want to be twenty twenty five how are we gonna get there? Here's a plan for you there's no reason you can't walk out of here and start implementing all of these immediately. So bridal shows that's another one client referral program create a flyer that goes in every order may make the plan are the program I should say ah mohr formalized one so what you want to do is to create a five by seven photo print doesn't have to be this elaborate two sided card where you got to order one hundred time keep it simple five by seven photo prints every order that goes out with her two engagement session ah wedding session bridal session put that in the bag obviously I'm not going to give this to my baby clients although that might not be a bad idea but I've got other programs I want to run with but put this into your seniors and your weddings get them to refer clients for you make it a formal formalized plan advertising in magazines okay, this stuff works it builds brand awareness yes it's a little bit more expensive but look around and find magazines where it makes sense there's a whole bunch of other stuff that's going to come off of this and then of course facebook ads for newly engaged couples the minute they changed their status this information's available to you and do you know anybody today who's on facebook gets engaged and don't change their status immediately, right? They change your status to engage all, followed by the picture with the ring that they've taken with their iphone ok, to let everybody know what's going on? Well, guess what if you go in your facebook dashboard, okay, so go to your facebook panel right now. Pull up your facebook page and if you look there, you can see on the top right hand corner of your business page there's something called adds manager click on that, adds manager, you are going to be able to create a new ad campaign in your local market. There's nothing out there as powerful is this when trying to target your audience, so check this out. This is just within the o'fallon illinois area, okay, females, right? So I'm not going after the males on this I'm going after females because now they've already changed their status to engaged. They're not thinking about being engaged there are engaged who's going to start looking for the photographer, typically the females. So that's, why I'm going after so broad category family status engaged and noticed there's engaged six months uh or engaged one year, right? So people who have these prolonged engagement if they've been engaged for a year two years that's not really who I'm looking for that to me, I don't know if they're ever going to get married that's like getting a promise ring or something? I think so I'm looking for people who are fairly newly engaged that's my potential target. So I've selected six months connections there at the bottom you can see I can either target anyone I can remove people who are already connected to my studio so I can actually ignore that that that group of people, if they already like my page well, I don't want to do that. I want to target anyone and as you can see the audience size there is there seven a thousand females in a fifty mile radius off my studio because I selected that as well that have their status set to engaged this's monsters for you invest the money there and promote your ad created adhere and this is immediately going to give you access to them and what's the worst that can happen. Give it a try. Spend fifty or a hundred bucks on this. If you booked one wedding from that, that would be incredible. And who knows what? Your book right every market's gonna respond differently, but here's something quick, easy you can try, you can have this in play tomorrow there's no reason why and all of you don't have this in play effective tomorrow right? So you're in different markets glad right? Well talking about advertising I was just wondering if you do google adwords or anything like that I'm not a big fan of google adwords that's just me right? Because your your, um your promotion starts showing up in the most random of places so for example uh this course that they've been promoting on creative live it has been promoted everywhere being via google add words so I was like on the weather channel when I couldn't travel and I'm looking on the weather channel and I'm like, wait that's my course eso it was being advertised there you guys saw it right? It was popping up everywhere so that could be good and bad. I understand how google adwords work, but here I want to try right within that facebook community because I want to start trying to drive him right back to my facebook sites not to say you don't try google adwords give it a try see if it works I'll try anything once, but if it's not working here some other alternatives for you have you done google adwords? Have you experimented with it a little, but I haven't been successful and success with it spent a lot of money well lets you so let's talk about this when you're creating this ad that's the other problem right? The money seems to be going out the door and you don't know if it's working or not and I know there's ways to measure it. I'm just I like I want to start working more with the facebook side of things and so but you've gotta have a add that encourages people to engage, right? That was the word of the day. Uh, you know, the first day engaged, engaged, engaged, so that ad has to be tied to an actionable item, right? What do you want them to do? You just want to see a pretty picture pop up on hope they click it? No, maybe it's gotta have a caption, right? Looking for a wedding photographer? Okay want wedding pictures? Want better wedding pictures, right? Get creative and also from an ads manager perspective, I don't know if you realize this you can run four, five, six different campaigns at the same time see which one's working because if they're not clicking on it, you're not necessarily paying, so you're not gonna pay by impression you're paying if they click through and do something with it. So c which ads are working? See which taglines are working and it start experimenting with it, so hopefully this makes sense to everyone? How about magazine ads? So this is a current magazine ad for us this is running in the chicago area because we want to advertise up there a couple of things to notice one image, no hodgepodge of imagery, no collages, I got a single page ad it's a big image and it matches it definitely matches my brand. No one is going to follow through on this who's looking for a traditional photographer because a traditional photographer is not putting their couple on a roof, okay for a night time shot that's not to me, not a traditional shot that somebody is a little more edgy going to push the limits a little bit more, and that may very well be your brand, but that's my point, whatever image you put in there needs to be representative of you and your brand whatever that is. Uh, no, you can't see it probably where you guys are sitting, but online, you'll see the background isn't just a black backgrounds like a textured, grungy kind of background, real simple language photography that leaves nothing to the imagination chicago, new york, worldwide. So we're letting our audience know what what parts of the world will cover when we get leads off this ad? How much do you think our prices are there? Not st louis prices right? We've gotta allow or incorporate for travel into the package is because what I'm not gonna do is if a client calls me and says, uh we're getting married in new york, okay, you're getting married in new york that's that's my package price is this when you've gotta add hotel, you've gotta add airfare, you've got ahead car you've gotta add meals and they don't want to be bothered with that stuff how much is it to have you there? And so what I do is in my pricing, I put together what I'm where I need to be to be able to cover that event no matter where it is now for client finds me in saint louis and he's getting married new york of course then I have to adjust pricing to incorporate that, but when I'm trying to break into another market danielle you specifically when you're trying to break into another market, they don't care I don't want to be bothered with all those details. Jules so do you on the destination once do you research what the travel is before you give them a package price? No, because it's gonna be more excited to go to mexico? Yes, anything stateside? I'm gonna have a flat price for, um depending on what market they're calling me from once we start going international they understand that pricing is going to change absolutely so we have photographed weddings in ireland ah, you're up, right? So as we're going overseas were film and we're doing that they understand pricing is definitely gonna change, so we're giving them a price point for petar v and then we're giving them ah, price point for some travel and let me give you some tips and tricks there. If you're trying to break in any kind of destination work, you own your travel if you're not only your travel, oh my gosh, you are going to end up on the worst possible flights. Why? Because they're making price decisions, they don't care about you, they don't care if you're on a flight for eighteen hours, even though it's only a two hour flight, they could care less right? So you've got to own your own travel so that's what we do, we give them a quote for travel and then we own everything from there, we're going to take care of our hotel are in and out dates our car, our meals because ultimately the bride groom have their own planning to take care of last thing they want to do is worry about you and again I learned this the hard way, so when I was starting out, one of my first destination weddings was down in like st thomas, and it took me somewhere in the neighborhood of was like a fifteen hour trip to get down there. It should have been nowhere near that because the groom was cheap and he was booking the cheapest flight possible with, like two or three different connections made no sense, whereas I could have gotten either direct flight or single connection flight uh, where I needed to be and it was after that we decided never again we're going to control our own destiny when it comes to this stuff and it's been great ever, ever since because you may even have miles, right? And so maybe I want to see what my miles, but I'm still going to take that cash in for, you know, for travel or I know I got to get back at a certain time or I want to leave at a certain time. I don't get on a six a m flight that's, not me. I'm not wired that way. S o that those are things you want to keep in mind if you're trying to break into destination. But of course it's got a phone number. Notice the phone number it's an eight hundred number. There are companies out there that will allow you to purchase a local number in a market you don't even live in, okay, what's the name of that company. It's called one box so the name of the company is called one box you khun by eight hundred number you can buy a local number so we have a chicago number. We have a new york number or we just have a generic eight hundred number that routes to me. Look, I'm always on the road, so somebody may call that eight hundred number and it will try the studio first and let's say, alex doesn't answer it and what it says to you, you call in and it says, you know, for south and kata press one you press one now tries to reach me. Well, if it can't reach me at the line, then it re routes tow line number two. Okay, maybe line number two line number ones in the studio, but line number two is my cell phone, right? So this is a very intelligent phone system that I don't have to spend thousands of dollars on it's just a small monthly fee to have this, and then if it can't reach you, the best part of it is is it sends you the voicemail and email. So now I don't know about you guys, if you're on your iphone, you ever get a voicemail, and you need to afford it to someone else it's just not possible. So now with this system if I get a voicemail from somebody you know, I mean, I'm checking on the status of my order well, I don't know why you're calling me I don't know the status he order so now I can forward this to my team so that they can look into it because it in email and we can track it so I really like the system, but we all agree this matches my brand it's clean it's simple there's not much to it a single picture it's an impact shot and hopefully I'm going to track the right kind of clients so questions about this, especially from you guys, anything that you feel can't execute on immediately we can can execute on magazines a little bit more expensive but definitely self we can put into play. Yeah, which magazines do advertise in national or local local? I'm not a big fan in national magazines, so I've done national magazines before I did grace armand was the biggest waste of money I've ever had in my life it was very, very expensive got me nothing but a little badge I can put on my web page I just think the distribution of that is not quite where it needs to be and it did nothing for me, so I will try anything once it was a very expensive proposition for me, but it didn't pay any dividends at all? I got no traffic from it, no phone calls from it. So what else can I do? It's not working. I don't like national magazines, so we do a lot of the local magazines. So we do st louis bridegroom, which is a local magazine in st louis there's, three different bridal magazines. We do one of them. St louis bridegroom has always been good to us. Ah, and then in chicago, I believe it's taylor, chicago style weddings. We advertise their and that's actually worked for us. We've gotten leads from that magazine where they have specifically cited they found us in that magazine, so try it. See if it's working for you on go from there, and the bride that booked me from that, she booked our black label and booked our wedding video so well worth the cost of the investment in the magazine for us, so definitely definitely worth looking into.

Class Description

Learn actionable and affordable marketing strategies you can use to help grow your business from Sal Cincotta in Marketing Your Photography Business.

In this class, you’ll learn how to generate more site traffic and prospective customers though easy-to-implement digital marketing techniques. Sal will show you how a combination of social media (Facebook, Twitter, blogs) and search engine optimization (SEO) can attract leads to your site. He also show you how to build a marketable portfolio that impresses potential clients once they arrive on your page. You’ll also learn how to determine if your marketing plan is working, and how to fix it if it's not.

This course is great for both beginning photographers and established studios. The basic strategies provide a good fundamentals refresher for established studios, and the more advanced information gives less-established photographers a roadmap for the future. There will be advice for ANY genre of photography marketing.



I'm currently a business owner in another industry. The business is financally successful, highly respected and the envy of our competitors. In order to market the business how I visualised our brand/customer, I learned how to take a photograph! I then feel in love with photography... I can completely relate to the concepts Sal is offering. This is fantastic advise many of which I have implemented in my own business. It's amazing how this advise can easily transfer to marketing any business or product. Unless like I had done you want to find the time to read countless books on the subject of business marketing, learn from trial and error, then simply fast-track years ahead and buy this course. It's a no-brainer! If only CL had been around when I had literally fought my way through setting up my business I would have found success a lot earlier. Sal's passion, drive, creativity and determination is what he can't teach you however. You are gonna have to do it your own way! Good luck to you all and Happy New Year.