Freelance photo editor and photographer Wendy George (pictured above) has been…
In our newest guide, 2013 Survey: What Buyers Want From Photographers, we collect the opinions from hundreds of art buyer’s and compile them into one easy to read, go-to place. But before you dive into what they want, you must examine what you want.
Your goal is to be the go-to photographer that your target market turns to, right? But if you can’t pinpoint your ideal client and niche market, convincing potential customers that you’re the one for the job can be a challenge. Your pitches will be unconvincing and fall flat, and if you do get a buyer’s attention, they will perceive your work as scattered and unfocused.
So, before reaching out to any potential client or buyer, you first need to develop a clear vision about your brand and identity. The more focused your specialty is, the better you can communicate your product, services, and values—in essence, your brand—to potential clients and improve your chances of getting hired.
How to determine your target audience
1. Who is your ideal client? Write down the characteristics that define your target audience including: age, demographics, socioeconomic status, and even common shared hobbies among that community. Also consider your market focus such as advertising agencies, magazines, book publishers, and design agencies. Think through which specialities are more geared toward your work and style.
2. List out your clients’ needs and problems they often face. Do your research and understand how your services will address those needs.
3. Look at your website. Do the photos in your online portfolios show off strong work in a specific field, or are your images all over the map? Edit your imagery to show only the type of work you want to help you get hired to shoot.
4. Think about the hierarchy of information you are delivering to the viewer on your site, and make sure the first category shows the primary work you’re going after. Remember that user behavior goes to the first category when arriving on your homepage, so you will want to adjust accordingly and set the tone for potential buyers.
5. If you want to shoot for a specific magazine, for example, find their media kit online. It will not only break down what the magazine is all about, but there is also an editorial calendar that shows you what they need for future issues. And if you want to work for a specific brand like Nike, you can do a Google search to find the brand’s strategy, which will be full of information about what they are trying to accomplish through their advertising. Finding these resources will help you think through how your own work can address their needs.
Answering these questions will also help you read through the 2013 Survey in a way that’s targeted for your own business’s needs. Download the guide today to dive into the survey results!