8 Things That May Be Keeping Your Social Media Profiles From Looking Professional

As an entrepreneur, you’ve probably run into many times where you start something with great intentions, only to find you end up ignoring it throughout the year simply due to lack of time. If you have portrait sittings, files to edit, and clients to meet, do you really have the time to stop and edit your Facebook profile?

Since social media networks change their structure every couple of months, its easy for your profiles to lose their professional look and feel – leaving your business to look like a true “mom and pop” place. If you haven’t made your social profiles a priority lately, use this list to do a little profile cleaning and bring your online persona back to a modern day look and feel.

Facebook

Pages cover images should attract attention, not monetize your business
Facebook has made a number of layout changes since the beginning of 2012, most notably the introduction of timelines. Instead of being able to choose which “page” your Page opens up to, Facebook now has one standard look and feel. Your cover image is what introduces visitors to your business, and it should be representative of your business without selling them. The cover image should be 851 pixels wide by 315 pixels tall, and to make it load quickly, make sure your JPG file is less than 100 kilobytes. According to Facebook guidelines, covers may not include calls to action, price or purchase information, and they may not ask for “Likes”. Comply to make sure you aren’t shut down after you work hard to grow your followers. [Read more...]

5 Ways To Tell If Twitter Is Working For Your Photography Business

Social media sites come and go. And if you are like most photographers, you probably have your social favorites. Do you favor YouTube or Facebook? Pinterest or Twitter?

While Twitter is now one of the “old timers”, it can still be an effective tool to get the word out about your business. Here is how you can tell.

Crowdbooster

Crowdbooster is a social media analytics tool that offers suggestions and resources to help you improve your online presence. It provides you with a plan of action to show you how you can reach out to the influencers in your sphere, create content that resonates with your audience, and when to send content to be most effective. It can help you track long term engagement and how best to interact with your audience. And if you have multiple accounts, that’s okay. Crowdbooster can bring all of your Twitter accounts together with your Facebook Pages accounts, and give you one stop views of how your marketing is working.

TweetCharts

TweetCharts allow you to generate a customized report for anything you can search for on Twitter. Use words, phrases, usernames, URLs, or hashtags to check out everything related to your niche. This is a great tool to use as you are tracking your campaigns and marketing programs. Track to see how many times your Tweet is mentioned, or how many times it was retweeted. You can also track if your followers and retweeters are more male or more female – perfect for understanding who your audience is and who you should be promoting your business too.

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What Do Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter All Have In Common?

The statistics are always out of this world.

  • Total unique visitors increased – 2702.2% since May 2011
  • Gender breakdown – 68.2% female, 31.8% male
  • Over 1.36 million visitors a day

Yep, that’s the latest statistics put out by Modea and comScore on the social networking site Pinterest.

If you are trying to grow your photography business, it’s THE place to be.

Dig Deeper: The Code For Blocking Pinterest … And 12 Reasons You Shouldn’t Use It

So by all means, jump over, start up your own Pin boards and Pin away. [Read more...]

How wedding photographers can maximize on Twitter

A Guest Article By Andrew Funderburg

 

1. Your Target Audience The main people a wedding photographer will want to target on Twitter is other wedding industry vendors. Since it’s damn-near impossible to know which Twitter users are brides-to-be, target vendors. Use Twitter to know who is doing what. Offer help if you see someone starting a project. Some suggestions:

  • Magazine Editors
  • Wedding Planners
  • Gown Shops
  • Florists
  • Venues

You get the picture. Twitter is an AWESOME way to break the ice with new vendors and other industry professionals you have yet to meet. Then when you do finally get some face time, you’ll have some familiarity to start with.

2. Look for people who talk back OK, so now you’ve found vendors with Twitter accounts. How do you know if they’re worth pursuing? Look at their stream. If they send out plenty of @replies, then this is who you want to talk to. If on the other hand, their stream is just one-way announcements and links to their Web site, chances are you won’t get much out of them. (They haven’t figured out how to use Twitter yet!)

3. Reach Out Twitter is not an “if you build it, they will come” type medium. In fact, it’s the opposite. You have to REACH OUT to people. You do this on Twitter by first following the people you’re targeting and then replying to their tweets. They’ll follow back after awhile. You have to jump-start it.

4. Be Interesting This should be a no-brainer, but have something to say. If you’re not witty yourself, provide resources, tips and info. You also can have good taste in retweets. @PicSeshu is someone who does this very well and has become a great photography resource on Twitter. Keep in mind your target audience and provide relevant info.

5. Have Fun The simplest law of the social universe, if you’re having fun people will be attracted to you. People want to do business with and be around other positive, upbeat people.

There you have it. That’s how a wedding photographer can use Twitter for business.

 

Why The Only Thing That Matters To Your Photography Business Is Traffic

We have a building down the street from us that has housed five different restaurants in the past two years. The first had been around for years, and the owners were a part of the community. But they decided to retire, and sold the business. That owner “forgot” to pay taxes, and was shut down in a matter of months. And so the cycle began. Restaurant number two opened and shut down. Same with number three, four and five. Right now there is another large dumpster out front, so I’m sure number six will be open in just a few more weeks.

Why did each of these businesses fail so quickly? Ultimately it came down to traffic. If there aren’t enough people coming through the doors to make ends meet, you can’t survive as a business.

In order to get new business through your doors, you have to generate the traffic. Whether its recommendations from friends, coupons mailed to nearby homes, or networking with local businesses, you have to do something to generate the traffic.

That same thought process carries through to the online world as well.

In order to make connections online, you have to be “talking” in the right places. Its great if you blog, but if you are the only one reading it, it won’t do you any good. Same goes for Twitter, Facebook and more. [Read more...]

Why Every Small Business Owner Must Now Be a Content Provider

This post is Day 14 of 30 Ways In 30 Days To Redesign Your Life With Photography. This series seeks to provide you with practical steps to get you from wherever you are today, to exactly where you want to be – this year! If your goal has always been to take your photography to a whole new level, hang on and start enjoying a new lifestyle you’ve always dreamed of.

I’m a huge fan of learning from the biggest names in the business. From celebrities, to business owners, to politicians, I’ve always felt if they had what it takes to make it to the top, they must have a tidbit or two of insight on how to get there. Even if you only pick up one important fact from each person, together it can add up to incredible advice.

So you’ll find a lot of biographies on my nightstand. And I love watching interviews on television and online. But something amazing has happened over the past few years.

If you watch or read about anyone from the early baby boomer generation and older, they usually provide a comment along the lines of “if I had to start again today, I’d never be who I am today. The competition is just too intense these days.”

I’ve thought a lot about that, because I have read or heard that from more than one person. Is there really that much more competition? Or is it just that times have changed, and the way we do business has changed?

Its still possible to make it to the top, you just have to do it in a different way.

Let’s take a look at someone like Elvis Presley. When he first started out, he created a record, and him and his agent took it to every radio station around trying to get airtime. They networked on a personal basis, drove from place to place trying to connect, and eventually it all paid off.

Now let’s look at someone like Justin Bieber. Instead of cutting a record, he records a video and places it on YouTube. Then he networks in much the same manner. He makes connections online, and communicates with everyone from a preteen fan to a Hollywood agent.

[Read more...]

The Five Necessities To Photography Success

What do you need to succeed as a photographer? A better camera? More equipment? More clients?

Every photographer has a different answer because every photographer is at a different point of the business game. A photographer with a brand new studio will answer differently than a photographer with 30 years of business experience.

Yet there are certain things every photographer needs in order to make it as a successful photographer. It goes beyond the equipment or the experience.

When we were first starting your photography business, we met an incredible artist. Our friend had amazing ideas, and his images had true genius written all over them. Yet he was an artist through and through. He held a small space on Main Street, and only sold his work (at way too low of a price) to people that walked through his door. Or came to him through referral based on his reputation. He survived, but never thrived. Today he is working other jobs around his photography in order to survive.

I see and hear stories like that all the time. They don’t fail because of talent; they fail because of lack of business experience. They fail because of lack of marketing and sales skills. A mediocre photographer with great sales and marketing skills will always do better than an outstanding photographer with few skills.

As a photographer, what do you need to succeed in 2011?

Blogging

Want to know the best tool available to you today? Yep, it’s a blog. Websites are a thing of the past because of limitations they have. They are created using a hodgepodge of coding that simply isn’t attracting the attention of Google. They rely on programming knowledge, which means the average person needs help to make changes and additions.  And they allow you to stay active in the social media arena. Traditional marketing is dead – if you aren’t using social in today’s world, you are missing out on huge opportunity.

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14 Signs Social Media Won’t Bring In Clients For Your Photography Business

This past weekend I attended a networking event. I sat next to a wonderful woman whom I halets do businessd a lot in common with. We talked at great length, and she had some wonderful ideas on marketing a business. She handed me her card, and gave me her Twitter address for us to keep in touch. She was very excited about using Twitter, yet wasn’t quite sure how it would help her in the future.

When I checked into her Twitter account today, I wasn’t surprised to see she had 40 followers. Do you see yourself in any of these?

1. You have less than 100 followers/friends/fans.

2. You know every friend on your social account personally.

3. You talk about what you had for lunch.

4. You post a few times per week – when you have time.

5. You expect to make money the first week you’re on the site. [Read more...]

Inventor Of Twitter

We are big fans of twitter and really got a kick out of this Close To Home comic.

Close To Home

Twitter Links and Tools for Twitter

Do you use Twitter? Do you have a clue about Twitter or how it works. Twitter is a microblogging format that allow you to keep your followers updated on you. Any thing you want to post within a 140 character space. Yes it is short and sweet but you do get used to it.

Twitter can be an invaluable tool if you have a group or subject that you are interested in. Twitter is allow links to be placed into the posts or updates so if you find an interesting item on the internet, share it.

We have put together a list of Twitter connections:

Check out the Twitter Links

Follow Me On Twitter

If you want to keep up with Andrew or Lori on Twitter, here are the links:

http://www.twitter.com/andrewosterberg

http://www.twitter.com/loriosterberg