If I had to start over this is what I would do immediately.
Three Simple Steps to More Clients
1. Create a spreadsheet and use it to track every conversation you have with a potential client. Include columns for Name, Contact Info, Where You Met, Date of Last Contact, Priority (1 for hot / high value prospects, 2 for medium, 3 for maaaybe), and Notes. Take the time to take extensive note on every prospect and every engagement.
2. Grow your social and professional networks. Be curious. Be interested. Ask questions. Engage with other people who are ‘in the world’ of your target market, especially other small business owners – and especially in person. If you’re very shy, volunteer with a non-profit: they’ll deeply appreciate you and work to help you as much as you help them. Add these folks to your spreadsheet.
3. Keep the ball in your court. Don’t just hand out a business card and wait for prospects to call you. Get their contact information and follow up, follow up, follow up (using your spreadsheet). But don’t just beg for their business or pitch coupons and discounts – show your friendship first. Be interested, ask questions, learn wants and needs, give give give value.
This is handshake marketing.
This is “being where Your People are.”
Listen, I understand odds are good you’re an introvert, shy, and maybe even suffer mild to serious social anxiety. This isn’t the only way to market – the ways are countless – but it’s one way. No system is perfect for every photographer, but you can choose to learn from every system. Be creative.
And as always, experiment and earn feedback. So long as you’re doing nothing that requires a measure of fear and bravery, a taste of risk and rejection, you’re holding back the blessings you have to give through your art and business.
Get out there and hustle!
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