Marketing for photographing Italian Weddings
1. Word of mouth
3.Trade fair participation
4. Buying advertising space in bridal magazines
5. Creating a network of contacts and collaborations with service providers, or, as is the case with the majority of photographers
6.Have a studio or exhibition space in a neighborhood or strategically placed street.
4. Buying advertising space in bridal magazines
If it is true that the online advertising and word of mouth are undoubtedly very effective, it is also true that the charm of an advertisement in a printed magazine is hard to resist. If you visit any newsagency or news stand, you quickly realize the enormous range of magazines devoted to the weddings sector.
Even the most remote newsagency in the remotest country has at least a dozen such magazines on display on its shelves. There are thousands of types and to suit all tastes. Purchasing advertising space in one of these magazines can be quite convenient, you just have to be careful to choose the right magazine for the type of clients you want to reach and above all, the budget you wish to spend.
In Italy there are magazines like Bride, White Sposa and Vogue Sposa which all have fairly prohibitive prices, but on the other hand are read by a very large number of people. Another positive aspect of buying ad space in these magazines is that you immediately become associated with important high fashion brands, and as a result readers will then automatically associate you with these brands. Finally, just keep in mind that these magazines are often found in hair salons or beauticians for months or even years, so even if you purchase ad space for a single issue, these magazines issues are often in circulation for a long time. I have purchased ad space several times and in various magazines, and frankly, I believe that this investment gives disappointing results. However, I recognise, that it’s really difficult to resist the temptation to try seeing, at least once, you ad in a nationally-distributed magazine.
5. A network of partnerships with professionals and other wedding industry suppliers
This is the kind of marketing that calls on a photographers interpersonal skills. Having a network of partners means creating personal and professional relationships with other suppliers. First, it is important that the wedding photographer is on good terms with any suppliers that they have something to do with through their work. I have experienced firsthand that having a good relationship with hairdressers, makeup artists, florists, wedding planners in Italy and reception venue staff is extremely useful and effective for marketing purposes.
It’s important not to underestimate the fact that a photographer has something coveted by all suppliers: wedding photographs. In a world where images are increasingly the most important self-promotion tool, it’s easy to see that everyone needs them, everyone needs photographs to document their professional skills. From hairdresser and makeup artists, to florists, and venue managers, everybody needs photographs.
So, if you consider that we have very powerful weapon and if we have the patience to regularly provide photographs that represent their work to other service providers, we can safely to win their friendship, at least professionally speaking. During my career as a wedding photographer I have had the opportunity to meet many suppliers and some of us have literally grown up together, professionally speaking. This shared growth has mainly been due to the good relations that have existed between us, where photographs have always been the main catalyst of the beginning of the relationship. Without personally naming any particular people, I can safely say that there are hairdressers, makeup artists and florists to whom I owe so much to my success and equally part of whose success in the wedding sector is due to my photographs.
As for wedding venues, even the most luxurious and important venues, while already being in possession of an infinite supply of photographic material, they are always happy to accept new photographs. I must admit that often it is thanks to photographs given to various hotels and venues that many clients find me. With this in mind, I recommend you always pay attention to the work of other suppliers, especially weddings venues. Photographing the hotel decorations gives you the chance, later, to be able to provide them with photographic material, preferably printed and with your name on it. Finally, Italian wedding planning agencies, are those service providers that require photographic material than all others. Often, for them, the photographer of a wedding they have coordinated is the only person able to provide them with photographic material that documents their work.
This type of publicity, therefore, is mainly based on personal relationships and the exchange of clients and references, but, above all, it is based on the effectiveness of priceless wedding photographs. This type of promotion is valid both for Italian weddings as well as for destination wedding in Italy.
6. Marketing via a studio or exhibition space
Although personally I have never had a studio or exhibition space, I do believe that having one can be a very valuable tool for promoting a wedding photographer’s business. If the studio or exhibition space is located in a strategic area of the town or city, it can encourage potential customers to take advantage of the photographer’s services. On my travels around the world I have been magnetically pulled into photographers’ studios, attracted as much by the design of the studio as the beauty of the photography within.
As one of its absolutely fundamental requirements, a photography studio should be in a much frequented and strategically important location. Furthermore, the studio should be furnished in an elegant style and without too many distractions, the furniture should ensure that the attention of visitors is drawn to the photographs rather than anything else. I always imagined my, hypothetical, studio as a small art gallery, where visitors would cross wide empty spaces surrounded by walls decorated with few, but very representative, photographs.
As I said, having never had my own studio, I'm not a great expert, but I can say that on my travels I have seen some truly beautiful studios.
This type of marketing is mainly for Italian clients, much less so for foreign clients who marry in Italy, unless the studio is in a town or city with a large influx of tourists, such as Amalfi, Positano, Ravello, the centre of Rome, Florence or Venice, etc.. But it is also true that having a studio in the centre of one of these town or cities is very expensive and personally I think it’s something that a photographer can do without.
published on 17 Marzo 2013 by Gianni
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