Want to grow your business? Take action. And if something hasn’t worked in the past, try something new. Here’s 26 things you can do to start taking action today, and start bringing in the leads.

1. Submit your stock images to one of the many online stock agencies such as IStockPhoto. Stock companies allow you to build a bio page, and list links to other sites and information. Use this to selectively promote yourself to people that enjoy your work.

Ideas for your photography business - helping you grow your studio

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2. Send a press release to your local paper submitting a story idea. Newspapers, television, and radio shows are always on the lookout for a good storyline. Provide them with a story that’s relevant to the season, and makes for good news.

3. Visit a local networking group and offer to photograph the group for the website. Many of today’s networking groups have a website to promote their services. Adding photographs provide a personal touch, and will allow you to capture attention as a photographer. Better yet, offer to take Facebook photos of the individuals. Check out my One Great Idea – Meet Neil Creek to find out how he grew his business with Facebook photos.

4. Send out letters to your past clients with a new promotion. Your best client is a past client. Make them an offer they can’t refuse.

5. Visit a local chamber of commerce and sign up for the next networking group. Your chamber of commerce offers a variety of groups for you to network with. Choose a few groups and visit them to make a handful of new connections.

6. Find a complementary business willing to hang samples in their offices. Provide them several framed images at no cost. Because these images will potentially hand in the office for many months, make sure you use your best work, and provide top quality in both mounting and framing.

7. Post a comment on an online message board. Make sure you provide a link back to your website, yet don’t blatantly sell your services. Provide good quality content, and show you know your industry well.

8. Call three prospects and promote your business. Think back over the past couple of weeks to the connections you’ve made. Choose the three that have the best possibility of becoming a client, and connect with them over the phone.

9. Create flyers and hand them out at a networking event. Make your flyer short and to the point. The purpose should be to make them connect with you, either by brining in a coupon, or visiting your website for more information.

10. Write an article for one of your association newsletters. Most trade publications have a shortage of quality material. Offer an article to use, and use it to educate your association members.

11. Add more content to your website. Websites are meant to change and grow. Make adding content to your website a weekly task.

12. Run a contest. Whether you set up a cutest baby contest, or offer a toys for tots promotion, get your customers involved in your business.

13. Take out a classified ad in a trade publication. The least expensive method of advertising in a print publication is in the classifieds. Try out a new promotion, or use it to gain leads.

14. Join a social networking website like Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn. Social networking groups exist both online and locally. Try one online, and expand your business beyond your local area.

15. Participate in an online forum or chatroom. Thousands of forums exist on any subject you can imagine. Find a place where potential clients visit regularly, and chat away.

16. Make a magnetic sign for your car. From a simple magnetic door sign, to an entire car wrap, make your vehicle a moving advertisement.

17. Call in to a radio talk show. Dozens of radio stations exist both locally and online that reach your potential customer base. Create a message, and start talking.

18. Have a photo party, and get several clients together in one location to try something new. Instead of having one portrait sitting per day, this would guarantee you several. And getting friends together would help your sales increase because of the excitement.

19. Create shirts and caps with your logo and website information. Instead of wearing a big company’s logo, create your own. Make sure your family and employees all have a few too.

20. Set up a booth at a local fair or expo. There are expos for every target audience. Find one that matches your demographics, and find some new clients.

21. Volunteer for a community project or non-profit fundraiser. It’s always fun to get involved. This puts you in contact with other business owners that may be able to promote you – and allows you to give back at the same time.

22. Offer to teach a photography class at a local school or recreation center. Many people have the desire to take better photographs. Create a class that shows the basics in a fun way.

23. Teach a class at your local library. Whether alone or with a complementary business, your local library can provide you with a room, resources to advertise the class, and a whole new potential customer base.

24. Create a portrait special at a local toy store. Kids love toys. What better place to capture quality portraits with a natural expression.

25. Set up a special, limited edition weekend. Use a local landmark as your background: snow days in the park, sand castles on the beach, and holiday magic in the city are just a few examples. Be creative.

26. Post a comment on a blog. With a little time investment, you can add your comments to a post and link your information back to your site. Be sure and educate or enhance the blog post and not spam the site with unrelated content.

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