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Build Your Photography Business: Email Marketing For Photographers

In our continuing series on building your photography business, we are now focusing on email marketing for photographers.  More than a century ago, Mark Twain (allegedly) said, “Reports of my death are greatly exaggerated.” We often hear about the impending death of email. Like Mark Twain, email’s demise is greatly exaggerated. For nearly four decades, email has been an effective means of communication and marketing, and it isn’t going away anytime soon.



As a photographer, it is imperative that you keep in touch with your clients. Nigel Merrick learned this the hard way when he saw a social media post by one of his clients who was looking for a photographer.



“The hard and painful truth was, despite having had a good experience the previous time, despite having one of my portraits hanging on the wall at home, and despite being connected to me on Facebook, she had simply forgotten about me.”



Email is an effective way to ensure your clients don’t forget about you and know you’re available for their photography needs.



Let’s get started with these simple tips on email marketing for photographers.



Your List is Gold


If you’ve been in business for a while, you probably already have an email list of your clients. Your clients are familiar with your work and would appreciate receiving information from you.



If you’re just starting out, or you haven’t been asking your clients for their email addresses, there’s no time like the present to build your list. Either way, it is easy to get started. Most email service providers (ESPs) allow you to import from a spreadsheet and will walk you through set-up, opt-in, and unsubscribe practices.



A couple of additional ways to get new subscribers include:


  • Add a signup form on your website and social media sites.
  • Ask potential clients for their contact info and add them to your email newsletter list.
  • Offer special content that readers receive after signing up for your emails.



Statistics and plain old common sense prove that your subscribers are gold for your business. They will comprise a large part of your sales and provide word-of-mouth and social media value, so make sure you treat them well.



Now that we’ve determined who you should ask to join your email list, next we’ll take a look at ideas for what to include in your emails.



Your Email Newsletter Content


There are many things that you can include in your email newsletters. Your content should be valuable, informative, and show off your personality.



Fine art nature photographer, Scott Papek, had this to say about using email, “Anytime someone is willing to give up their email address you better reward them with great exclusive content and special promotions. My newsletter is my most important marketing tool.”



Here are some ideas to get you started.


  • Share your favorite photos or behind-the-scenes action from a recent shoot.
  • Talk about your current promotions.
  • Offer tips on taking photos or preparing for a photo shoot.
  • Calls-to-Action (CTAs): Make sure they know what to do and how to to do it!



Your emails are a great opportunity to make your readers feel special. Give them exclusive content that isn’t part of your other online marketing efforts.



Choosing an Email Service Provider


Don’t be overwhelmed by the number of ESPs available. You don’t need a lot of bells and whistles, especially at the start of your email marketing campaign.



Choose a service offering the basics at a price that fits your budget.


  • Import/export your lists
  • Create and customize templates
  • Automation to schedule emails
  • Allows for best viewing on computer or mobile devices
  • Analytics – see who opened and followed through on your CTAs
  • Integrates with your website and gallery page



Looking for even more detailed information about setting up and maintaining your email marketing? Check out this recent post called 13 Things to Start, Stop & Keep Doing With Your Email Marketing in 2017. Now is a great time to launch your email marketing. Keep in touch with your clients, offer them value, and repeat!



Have you missed any of the previous posts? Click on these links to posts on setting your online marketing goals, how to market your online photography store, and setting up your photography blog.



Have you found this post to be helpful?  SUBSCRIBE to our blog and stay tuned for more actionable tips, tricks, and best practices for online marketing of your photography business.

This article is intended for educational purposes only and does not replace independent professional judgment. Statements of fact and opinions expressed are those of the author(s) individually and, unless expressly stated to the contrary, are not the opinion or position of Tru Vue or its employees. Tru Vue does not endorse or approve, and assumes no responsibility for, the content, accuracy or completeness of the information presented.