Within a few seconds, anyone landing on your site will know whether they want to stick around. Within a few seconds of that realization, they’ll know if they want to spend their money on your products or services. When diving into the website content piece with my clients, I’ve found myself getting more and more picky about the work they are showing.
Open your website/blog right now. What does the first image say to a potential client?
I want to use one of my recent clients as an example. Ryan and Jill of With Love & Embers specialize in photographs that are overwhelmingly emotional (in the best way possible), while giving each photo a true sense of place. It’s like you can just feel everything about that moment. When choosing photos to showcase on their site, they completely nailed it. Every ounce of every photograph is speaking to their client experience.
I’ve had clients who describe their work as moody, emotional, and personal … But, when clicking on their site, the first image is of a colorful wedding bouquet, a bright photo with laughter, or a flower girl dancing during a reception. While those photographs might be beautiful, they don’t speak to their brand keywords, at all. And, when your goal is (or should be) to attract your ideal clients, how can you expect to do so when you’re showing work that doesn’t speak to your brand experience?
For me, I had to totally change the way I was presenting my projects. I used to break down each project into posts for the design board, the logos, the stationery, the website, etc. But, I realized I was getting tons of inquiries for individual pieces. Why weren’t people wanting to book me for a complete brand identity project? It’s because I wasn’t showing them complete projects. Now days, I show final suites, and present the visual pieces of their complete client experience. I tell you this to show you that I recognized this with my own business, and it goes beyond photographers. We all have to curate our sites to maximize effectiveness.
Want to be sure your images are capturing your perfect client?
- Revise your galleries & photos — If it’s been more than 6 months since you’ve updated the galleries on your site, it’s been too long.
- When revising, start with a list of descriptors. — Be picky! Pick 5 words that describe your brand experience or your work. If a photo doesn’t match, don’t show it.
- If you don’t want to do it, don’t show it! — If you’re a “wedding photographer that occasionally photographs families, but really only wants to photograph weddings”, take the family gallery off of your site!
- Use social media to microblog — Facebook and Instagram are perfect places to highlight your favorite 1 or 2 photos from a session. The description is a place to tell your audience why that photo fits with your brand. I love how Rosey Red Photography does this.
- Pare it down — Yeah, less is more. 10 amazing images that subscribe to your brand’s message are stronger than 50 mediocre images.
Just starting with these simple steps can help you get closer to always booking/selling to your ideal market. Have you done this? Tell me how your business benefited in the comment section below. And, if you’re like me, and have a hard time narrowing down your favorite work, tell me what the hardest part is for you.
Hey you! Yes, you!! The mama or papa over there who is balancing home life with work life, and trying to make it all look graceful. You’re doing amazing, and how did you manage to shower today? Over here, life is busy. It’s a bit insane if I’m being honest. Thankfully, the insanity is balanced by such joy.
Looking at 2014, I can say that it was a year of survival. It was my first year as a mother, and I really had to focus on evolving into a working mama. Funny enough, I think it was my most creative year yet. (I mean, hellloooo, I made a person.) Seriously though, I grew as a designer. I learned a ton about balance, and how to only work with people who inspire me.
After the baby fog cleared, I started connecting with other parents who are creatives. Many of my clients are parents, and I found myself being able to connect with them on a deeper level. What could be more magical than finding another level to connect with my clients on? It’s such a gift.
I want to start a conversation here about being a creative mom or dad. Are you a blogger? Photographer? Graphic Designer? Chef? I think I had this idea that truly creative people didn’t have time for babies. Au contraire!! I’m finding that some of the raddest people I know have little ones, and they are being badass parents and badass creatives! From this, The Creative Procreator was born. Coming up, I’ll be sharing insight from some of my favorite creative parents. People who have started their own businesses, had some kiddos, and have lived to tell their tale. We’ll talk about home/life balance, how to handle inspiration when you can’t jump right into your ideas, being a working parent, how things have changed since the little ones arrived, and the joy of being self-employed with the flexibility to raise a family.
I’d love to hear from you! If you’d like to be a part of the series, be sure to let me know. And by the way, I do not have it all figured out, but that’s part of the adventure. Here we go!!
A couple years ago, I had the amazing opportunity to work with Jen Jar for the first time … Imagine my excitement when I learned we’d get to work together again this year!!! Last month, Jen launched her very own photography business, Jen Jar Photography! We built this brand identity from the ground up. We focused on her main objective: photographing real moments! To me, this meant that the brand experience needed to feel natural, happy, and free of clutter. Her stunning work would be the center of the web experience. Her clients would fall in love with the paper goods she send them through their time together. Of course, we needed to add some joy and sparkle, hence the beautiful gold touches in her stationery suite.
I absolutely loved this project. The logo, and elements felt so fresh, and really made my heart sing. Her site pushed me, creatively, and I loved that!! We also created a simple WordPress blog, on ProPhoto, which compliments her site. In the end, the best part was working with Jen. Her joy for life, and enthusiasm of making others feel wonderful was so amazing to witness. Here’s my chance to return that love: Jen, you are amazing! I cannot wait to see your business grow and grow, and to see the love stories you capture!
To see her site, click here. You can visit her blog, here. And, be sure to connect on Facebook.
*All wedding photos by Jen Jar Photography*
Happy Friday, lovelies! I hope you had a wonderful week. Portland is gearing up for what I’m hoping is our last super-hot weekend. Then, I will welcome autumn with open arms. Really, I just want to take a photo of Alba sitting next to a pumpkin!
I wanted to pop in to share a project I wrapped earlier this year. When John Paul emailed me, I was happy for several reasons. 1) He’s a rad photographer from NYC. 2) I knew our visions aligned, and this would be an awesome project. 3) Because he was a HE. Don’t get me wrong, I love working with ladies. Big high fives, girls … you are my bread and butter! xo! But, I hadn’t really had a chance to work with a man before (aside from teams with a guy and a gal). The same week JP emailed, I also heard from Jeff Lundstrom. Those two were a breath of fresh air, and a challenge I was more than happy to accept.
JP’s work is so classically NYC. It’s full of color, life, and emotion. Here’s a look into his project, and the custom Showit site I designed.
Be sure to click through to see his live site, and hop over to his Facebook page to connect.
All wedding photography belongs to John Paul Teutonico Photography