Seven Essential Marketing and Sharing Tools
by Harrison Jacobs
November 12, 2013 —
Everyday it seems like a new product, app or social media service is being touted as “the next big thing.” But what is truly essential and what is irrelevant? When there’s a limited amount of time to spend on the parts of your business that don’t involve a camera, it helps to pay attention to tools that make a tangible difference. We compiled a selection of tools, apps and services that we think will have a real impact on your photography business. That means more exposure for your brand, more clients booked and more time spent doing what you love: Shooting pictures.
However, the best reason to use a link shortener like Bitly is that it gives you detailed metrics on the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns. When you put your links through the shortener, Bitly automatically tracks the number of clicks generated by your link, where the clicks are coming from geographically, who else is sharing the same content and on which social networks. It’s your own personal market research division. The best part: It’s free.
The app, which is available for iOS and Android, creates an album that guests can upload their own photos to using a provided access code, either in real time from their phone or from the web. It’s a great way to bring the guests’ perspective into your wedding albums and upload your images from the wedding in real time. Photos are hosted for free on Wedpics for a year and can be easily downloaded by the couple and pushed to social media.
It helps you plan and schedule posts so that your feed is always running even when you are shooting. Those posts aren’t just for your status either; it allows you to schedule postings to pages and groups as well. There are detailed statistics so you can figure out what gets seen, what gets ignored and what doesn’t even make it into people’s newsfeeds. Add in Post Planner’s content engine, which helps you generate shareable content and statuses that are proven to get traction, and you’ll have a powerful Facebook presence in no time.
When images are shared on social media, PASS automatically includes a photo credit and a link to your website. Photographers have full control over which images are public and private, and albums are viewable on any device. That means your clients can show off your images, even if the album isn’t finished yet. The service allows event albums to be shared free for 30 days, with the option to upgrade the event for $29, giving clients the ability to share/download the album for one year, plus have access to the photos in cold storage for ten years.
It includes marketing and branding tools, security for your images (dynamic watermarking and password protection), and the ability to fulfill orders however you want. If you want to print your photos for clients, go ahead. You’ll never be locked into one lab for prints. You can export directly from Aperture and Lightroom and use Instaproof’s iPhone app to check on your orders. It’s free and easy to set up an account. There are no start up, monthly, bandwidth, hosting or transaction fees—just a 15 percent commission on your orders. An online storefront may not sound revolutionary, but when you make it this easy and do it this well, it’s nothing short of a revelation.
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