Social media offers an enormous opportunity to grow your business and expand your client base, basically for free.
The downside? It can take a huge chunk of your precious time to really make it work.
It’s already hard enough finding time in our busy schedules to get everything done. Being glued to your device 24/7 is a surefire way to increase stress levels and slowly suck all joy out of life.
But there IS a way to build your photography brand through social media without losing your mind – actually I’ve got five for you…
Create a content schedule
If you want to save your sanity, create a schedule – and stick to it. By planning out your content in advance and scheduling it in ahead of time you’ll always have something to pull from in a pinch.
To help you do this there are some fantastic programs such as Hootsuite and MeetEdgar that schedule the content for you, so you never have to post live. Simply set aside some time each week, or even once a month, to work on your content creation.
Batching your posts in this way allows you to focus on providing quality content that your followers will actually benefit from (as opposed to quickly throwing something up just because you think you *should*). Once you’ve got your content sorted, you can simply set and forget and get on with other things.
Create captions that support your brand and connect with fans
Captivate potential clients and compel them to take action by crafting thoughtful captions using the type of language they would use themselves – easier said than done, I know.
This is why posting on the fly is not recommended. Take the time to really think about your ideal client and what they’re most interested – then go and create that.
A caption that’s memorable, shareable and resonates with your ideal client will help build the relationship, and ultimately pay off dividends when they’re ready to work with you.
It might help you to think about the types of posts you like, the topics that grab your interest and then notice how it’s been curated. Trust me, this technique works, and it’s well worth the extra effort.
Be consistent in your design and delivery
It’s so easy to fall off the map with social media, and when that happens you fall out of your client’s minds as well. Remember the phrase, “out of sight, out of mind”? This definitely applies to branding and social media.
When it comes to posting on social media consistency is key. This is why scheduling content, like we discussed above, is so important if you also want to have a life.
The use of specific design elements such as logos, colors and fonts will strengthen your brand and increase brand recognition. The more consistent you are with your design in your social media posts the better for your brand.
Don’t confuse your clients with different versions of your branding. Keep it simple and make sure your content is easily identified as you or your business.
Remember who you’re writing for – your ideal client
As I mentioned earlier, it’s important to craft captions that reinforce your brand and use language that makes a connection. You also need to remember who you are writing for – your ideal client, aka the people who make work feel like fun.
If you’ve done the work on figuring out who your perfect client is then you should have a pretty good idea of what content they’ll be most interested in. I always tell my students to pick one of their existing clients, someone who they love to work with, or create an imaginary ideal client persona, and then when you’re writing content, write directly to that person.
Most importantly, don’t post fluff just for the sake of having a post. You want to make sure the content is something that helps them in some specific way and adds loads of value.
Share your story – be imperfect and vulnerable
People want to get to know, like and trust you before they buy from you, which is why it’s important to be vulnerable and share yourself in an authentic way.
By sharing your own story, imperfections and all, people will find it easier to connect with you, which is a step closer to getting hired. Share sneak peeks into your own life with your favorite hobbies, favorite places, cute photos of your pets or kids – the possibilities are endless! The main thing is to show that you’re more than just a photographer; you’re an actual real person, and more specifically, one they can relate to.
Let’s be clear: I’m not talking about over-sharing here, that’s something I do not endorse. But how do you tell if you’re about to over-share? Ask yourself; is it educational, is it entertaining, does it add value to my readers in some way. If the answer is no, don’t share it.
So there you have it, my best tips for building your brand using social media.