Email marketing isn’t just for spammers who want to annoy, scam, and waste people’s time. It is a tool that is used by legitimate businesses across a broad range of sectors. One vertical that can really benefit from this tried and true method is the photography business.
Promising Email Marketing Stats
A recently published infographic revealed some very interesting statistics on email and its potential as a marketing tool. Here are some of the highlights:
- Over 100 trillion emails are sent per year, making it the most commonly used method for sharing information.
- 8 in 10 smartphone users use their device to check and send email.
- In 2011, email marketing delivered an average return of $40 for every $1 invested.
Despite what everyone likes to chant, email marketing is not dead. In fact, it is very much alive. Here are five ways email marketing can be used to grow a photography business.
1. Helping Promote Your Work
The internet provides convenient access to a number of tools professionals can use to promote their business. Many photographers choose to showcase their talents on blogs and more recently, social sites like Pinterest. Email is an ideal tool to add to your existing mix. Showcasing a few images every week or so is an effective way to get potential clients back to your website or blog to see what else you have in store.
2. Supporting Promotions
Social media is a great outlet for photographers, but your hands are generally tied in terms of running promotions. Unless you have invested in an advertising program with a given network, there is only so much you can do without risking violating the site’s terms of service. Email, on the other hand, gives you tons of flexibility and creativity to work your marketing magic. Whether it’s offering a 10% discount on your services or running a contest, you are pretty much free to do what you want as long as you respect the privacy of your subscribers.
3. Improving Efficiency
Email marketing is extremely efficient, especially when compared to direct mail and other traditional forms of marketing. This method does not require you to spend any time printing or mailing flyers out to prospects. That is time you can spend snapping photos, actually communicating with prospects, showcasing your work, and closing deals. When you can be more productive, you can usually be more effective.
4. Saving Money
Running a successful photography business can be mighty expensive. You’ve got your equipment to pay for, possibly software for management purposes, and whatever methods you may choose to advertise your talents. Email offers a very affordable way to run your business. Some firms charge a fixed monthly fee. Others charge based on the number of messages you send or the size of your list. In either case, you are very likely to get a price that equals immeasurable value in comparison to the return you get back on the investment.
5. Being Accountable
One of the most attractive things about email marketing can be seen in how it holds itself accountable — with a little help of course. With the right tools, it is possible for photographers to easily find out how their campaigns are performing in various areas. For example, you can learn how many people are receiving your message, opening it, and clicking through to your website for deeper engagement. This insight is valuable to a marketer because it reveals where they are struggling and highlights their successes as well.
Getting the Most From Email Marketing
Any serious photographer should consider indulging in email marketing. Some methods are mostly hype and very little substance, but this is one that works extremely well. However, winning results aren’t guaranteed, so we’ll leave you with some tips on how to make the most of it:
Choose the right company. There are several companies providing email marketing services, but not all are created equal. Look for one that accommodates your needs in the way of budget, features, and support.
Stay relevant. A sure-fire way to fail at this game is to send content that doesn’t match the needs, interests, or preferences of your audience. It’s easy to lose an audience, so photographers must commit to making sure their strategy is as focused as possible.
Be patient. Email marketing is not a quick path to riches or any other form of success. The conversions might not come right away, but stick to building your list, delivering engaging content, and tracking your steps, and they will come eventually.