This month Graham Parker’s been look­ing at ways to gen­er­ate free pub­lic­ity

NPhoto - - Make Cash With Your Nikon -

Mar­ket­ing for a new busi­ness is very im­por­tant, but it can cost a for­tune. Some firms set aside a mar­ket­ing bud­get, but the ma­jor­ity of small ‘one-man-band’ start-ups prob­a­bly don’t. I am in the lat­ter cat­e­gory.

To mar­ket my new stu­dio, I’ve been us­ing as many free ways to get my name out there as pos­si­ble. I be­lieve that word of mouth for me is by far the best way to build my stu­dio’s rep­u­ta­tion. I al­ways have busi­ness cards handy, and I at­tend free events, of­fer­ing my time and low-res photos for free to the or­gan­is­ers for their web­sites. Even if the op­por­tu­ni­ties are lim­ited, as long as I pick the right places the op­por­tu­ni­ties will come. I also brand my­self, wear­ing my com­pany on my sleeve… lit­er­ally! Okay, a branded T-shirt isn’t free to most peo­ple, but for me it is as I have a re­la­tion who can help.

There are also a lot of things on the in­ter­net that you can do for no ex­tra cost. I started with an easy one, claim­ing my online list­ings at sites such as Google My Busi­ness. One im­por­tant ex­er­cise is to tag all your photos that go to the in­ter­net. This can be done very easily in-cam­era. Via my Nikon’s Setup menu, I have added my email, web­site, name and copy­right to the EXIF so it ap­pears on ev­ery shot I take. Blog­ging and so­cial media also help bring you to the at­ten­tion of po­ten­tial cus­tomers. If you do start a blog, you need to keep go­ing, and also com­ment on oth­ers’ blogs. This sounds like a lot of work, but it needn’t be: I have con­nected my web­site with Face­book and Twit­ter so that I only have to post in one and it au­to­mat­i­cally goes to the oth­ers.

There are many other ways to mar­ket your­self, but when you’re run­ning a small busi­ness there comes a point where there isn’t enough time in the day to do ev­ery­thing. It’s bet­ter to do a few very well than a lot badly!

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