Effective Sales Promotion during the War Against Photographers and Other Opportunities



If I send out an email marketing blast,
I better hire someone to answer the droves of phone calls
asking me to bid on their next campaign.

Of course, email may be an effective element in a photographer’s marketing plans.
Before you begin to create a marketing plan, ask questions like:
Who am I? Where am I going? How am I going to get there?

What Do You Want Your Promotions to Accomplish?
“I just want to keep my name out there.”
That is not enough!

A series of great promotions are most effective when they engender
the full Oh Yeah! response which may go something like this:

Oh yeah! Joan Jones. I know who she is.
I know what she does and how she sees.
Her promotion is pinned up over my desk.
I am hoping to find an application for her work next time an opportunity arises.

Sales Promotion

Why does the commercial arts industry use the term self promotion when the action is intended to increase sales. If your marketing doesn’t contribute to increasing sales, why do it? Why do so many people in this industry believe sales is a four-letter word. Promoting without sales energy may make your marketing impotent. Sales promotion may help create positive perceptions and increase desire for your services.

Remember that you are not the only one promoting. Since the proliferation of email, art directors and art buyers receive an average of 100 email solicitations a day; not all from photographers. That is 500 a week. Let’s say the art director or buyer was off on a shoot for a week. He or she came back to an overflowing mailbox filled with email. What do you think happened to most of those promotions unless they were different from all of the others in message, form, concept, and of course the quality of the photographs themselves.

Since e-mail has become available to everyone and photographers are buying lists of names of people whom they know little or nothing about and perhaps breaking through spam filters to some unsuspecting prospect’s inbox, it produces even more clutter and is more difficult to get seen, noticed, remembered, desired, interested, inspired, etc. It does, of course, save some trees.

In addition to the dozens of email solicitations each day there are still dozens of print promotions arriving on prospects’ desks. Mass e-mail is like throwing a big net over the marketplace and hoping to catch a fish. And some do catch a fish now and then. But you won’t know what kind of fish you will catch unless you know what they are feeding on and that is impossible unless you know what kind of fish you want to catch.

The first thing that your promotion must do is to get the attention of the people who can give you what you want. (We will discuss how to do identify and get the attention of the right people for you at the Webinar)

Make a list of your own wants, desires and expectations.
Be as specific as you can.

To get participation from recipients
To provide fun
To be memorable
To establish you as someone who speaks your prospect’s language
To develop and reinforce your brand
To establish you as a go-to-person
To show the ways you see
To cut through the clutter
To drive people to your website
To get prospects to call or take other actions
To open the possibilities to build a creative relationship


There is a War Against Photographers
Your Prospects Are Not The Enemy!

Dale Carnegie taught that people want to do business with people they like. People in our industry are complaining and blaming and thus becoming victims. But worse yet, they are making their prospects – art directors, designers, art buyers, and other people who may be able to give them what they want into villains. Some think there is a war against photographers. If you do not like and respect the people that you want to do business with and they do not like and respect you, it will be felt and the results are obvious.