How to Thrive as a Professional Photographer in a Small Town
With picturesque views, empty roads, and a slower pace of life, small towns often seem idyllic. But if you're a photographer looking to launch your business, they can also be challenging places to work.
After all, people who live in smaller communities tend to know their neighbors well, and they are extremely cautious about adding new people to the circle, especially people they don't know. As such, launching a photography business in a small town poses some unique challenges.
However, the upside to this is that once you get to know people, you can easily become the entire town's go-to photographer. So how do you spread the word about your photography business in a small town? That's what we'll be exploring in this article.
Keep reading for some tips and tricks on how to market your photography services in a small town.
Get To Know Your Neighbors
Before you start thinking about how to become the next best small-town photographer, you need to get to know your neighbors. Get involved in your community, attend local events, and get to know the people who live in your town. When you first meet people, make sure you let them know that you are a photographer.
Don't pitch your services right off the bat but let them know that you are in the industry and that you are happy to help in any way possible. A great way to start is by donating your services to a local charity. This will allow you to meet people in your community and make a positive impact at the same time.
Host a Workshop or Event
If you're looking to get your name out there and make some extra cash, hosting a photography workshop or event may be a great option for you. This could be anything from a weekend workshop on how to shoot landscapes or portraits to hosting a community event where you teach people how to use their cameras.
If you decide to host an event or workshop, make sure to promote it as much as possible. Run ads in the local newspaper or place posters around town to let people know about your event. You could even give your workshop a title relevant to the area, like "How to Photograph Your Farm for Harvest Season."
Attend Networking Events and Meet-and-Greets
Whether you live in a small town or a big city, attending networking events and meet-and-greets can be a great way to make connections in your industry. If there are any photography-related events in your town, make sure to attend. You can even host your own event if you don't find anything that meets your needs.
Also, be sure to sign up for photographer-specific newsletters. This will allow you to stay informed about local photography events and workshops. You can also use these newsletters as an opportunity to promote your own photography business.
Put Ads in the Local Newspaper
If you've been living in a small town for a while and still haven't been able to make any connections, try putting an ad in the local newspaper. Make sure that your ad includes your phone number and a short description of what your business does.
You can also try putting an ad in the "Community Events" section as well. This is awesome because you don't even have to worry about coming up with a clever promotional ad. Pick a weekend day and offer 4-6 mini photography sessions, each 30 minutes at a specific location. All you need to do is let people know what the event is about, how they can contact you, and the rest will take care of itself.
Use Social Media Platforms
Not only are social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram free to use, but they also have millions of potential clients. Once you create a profile, all you have to do is create engaging content and hope that people like and share your posts.
You can also try advertising your services on these platforms. One great idea is to tag all of your posts with the name of your small town because chances are high that everybody in town will see it. This can lead to you getting new clients and referrals. Remember, word-of-mouth is everything in towns like these.
Always Ask for Referrals
Finally, you should always remember to ask your customers if they know anyone else who could benefit from your photography services. You can ask them personally when they come to pick up their photos, or you can ask them when they schedule an appointment with you.
You can also make it easier for your customers to refer you to others by including a referral program in your business. This can be as simple as offering a discount on their next order for every new customer they recommend to you.
It can be challenging to launch your photography business in a small town because people tend to be very cautious about who they hire. That said, once you do get your business off the ground, you can become the go-to town photographer and capture the entire market.
If you want to expand your photography business in a small town, you need to get to know the people so you can network with them. To do this, you can hold photography events and workshops, or you can advertise on social media.
If you have tried everything and still can't seem to expand your business, it may be time to take out an ad in the local paper. In any event, by following these tips and tricks, you’ll be able to grow your small-town photography business and make a name for yourself in no time.
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