One of the most asked about questions that every photographer wants to know the answer to would be: how do you get noticed. And the problem with this is that there isn’t just one answer to the question. Really, it depends on what genre of photography you are shooting, how much experience you have creating work, where you live, etc. etc. However, I wanted to provide you guys with a few options that can help you to get more people to know your name. I must confess, I am not at all a well-known photographer. With only 220 followers on my Instagram page and right around 200 views on my website each month, I am not all that qualified to write an article about this. Regardless, I feel as though I have garnered enough information that may be helpful to you. So, without further ado, allow us to dive in for a few short minutes.
This is something that comes with unbelievable benefits. I’m going to give you guys a little backstory here with my blogging career of sorts. Back when I was thirteen – maybe younger even – I created a blog for my stories with Blogger.com, a website dedicated to blogging that I had found through my cousin. With this blog, I would release a little chapter or so of whatever fiction story I was working on at the time. Mind you, this work was not very good, and I was simply doing this out of boredom; I honestly don’t know what my analytics were at the time. Fast forward to 2014 when I started photography, I chose to start fresh with Blogger and started up a new blog where I would post a single image I had taken. If I remember correctly, I would post one image every few days, if not every day. Either way, the last time I looked at the analytics – for I had a better understanding of what the numbers meant at that point – I had received around 30,000 views in only one year before moving on to SmugMug for my website.
The reason I mention this story is to help you understand the impact that a blog can have on getting your name out there. Of course, most of those 30,000 views could have been from my family members simply refreshing the page. But on the flipside, a good 25,000 of those views could have been from very different people. Since my blog was deleted permanently, I will never know that for sure. What I do know, is that by building up a blog for people to visit and learn what it is you are doing – even if you are just posting a new picture every so often with a nice little caption to it – your name can spread like wildfire in a short amount of time.
Going hand-in-hand with blogging, guest writing can have massive benefits for your growth as a creator. Something that I have just recently started back in October of 2017 is simply cold-emailing online blogs or magazines that post content similar to what I post on my own blog. This is where having a blog of your own is really helpful, by the way, as most of these websites require you to provide them with other posts you have written in the past. So, if I were you, I would work on your own blog for a month or so, really put out some great content, and then write an additional post each night that you can send off to one of these websites. By doing this, you aren’t sacrificing any content that would otherwise be going onto your blog, and at the same time you are able to still use that content if it gets rejected by another website.
The main benefit to guest writing is that most the blogs you submit content to are already established online; this allows your content to be seen by double, if not triple, the amount of people that would normally see it. And by planting your website and social media in the short bio that goes along with your post, your website could potentially gain a ton of new viewers.
Whether this be in the form of ads on social media sites or through Google, or if you are simply going out on a walk, passing business cards to everyone you talk to, you need to be continuously marketing yourself and your brand. It does not matter where it is you are going: make damn sure you are carrying with you ten or more business cards for you to hand out to the people you meet. Make it a goal of yours to hand out one hundred business cards in one day. Sure, you don’t want to do this every single day, but by doing it the first day, it will make it easier for you to strike up a conversation with someone new, leading to plenty more views on your website.
Another quick tip in terms of marketing – especially if you sell prints – would be to head on in to your local diners, coffee shops, mom-and-pop businesses, and ask to speak to the manager. When they come to talk to yourself, introduce yourself as a local photographer and offer them some artwork to hang on the walls. Yes, you may want to do this for free for at least one shop. Why? Because when they say yes and you finally have some work on their walls, you can go to the next store and mention it to them. And while I cannot guarantee it, I bet they will be willing to buy your artwork from you instead of putting up poor art from Ikea. By having your work on their walls, not only are you able to draw in new business, but they are as well, so long as you tell your followers about your work being on their walls. It’s a win-win situation.
When I was first planning out this post, I had thought about titling this little section “post new content daily,” but almost immediately retraced my steps. The problem with telling other photographers to post daily is that I do not personally do it; as a landscape photographer, it is tough as hell to manage that. Maybe that’s a problem that only I have, but I don’t think so. I posted an article about this topic not too long ago, so instead of repeating myself, simply go check it out here.
Get out there and create!
The biggest mistake every photographer makes at least at one point in their career is not getting out there and creating. Every chance you get, you should be out in the field, working your ass off, creating new content to reveal to the world. There really should be no excuse as to why you aren’t putting out new work. I know, I’m a hypocrite for saying this as I was posting rather poorly to this blog in the beginning. However, I screwed my head on straight and am now writing at least two blog posts every night; this allows me to stay ahead of the game, just in case I have a day or even a week where I don’t feel the motivation to post.
I’m going to leave you guys with a quote that really resonated with me:
“Just keep making art. Let other people decide whether it’s good or bad; and while they’re trying to decide, you just continue to make art.”
I hope you gained something out of this article, and, as always, thank you guys so much for the constant support. Until next time…