When a couple hires you to photograph their wedding, it’s a big opportunity—especially if you consider the possible long-term value of that relationship. Every new client represents a potential lifelong customer. With all of the daily tasks involved in wrapping up a wedding (editing, billing, sending prints), following up with your clients on a regular basis can feel like a daunting task. That’s where automated email marketing for photographers comes in!
By simply adding your clients to an email list as part of your post-wedding workflow, the client follow-up process gets so much easier, and the chances of earning a repeat customer increase. It’s a win-win!
All it takes is a smart series of emails that are timely, to the point, and specific to the needs of your clients. The best part is that if you automate your email marketing, you can basically set it and forget it! It’s a bit more work up front, but will save you loads of time and frustration in the long run.
Photo credit: Madeline Serio | Preset: Portra Pushed
Why Email Marketing for Photographers is Important
The initial set-up for email marketing can be a big time investment, so what makes it worth it for photographers? There are quite a few reasons why automated email marketing for photographers is important and worth the effort.
- Email marketing ensures you stay top-of-mind for clients at any stage in their lives. Something as small as showing up inside your client's inbox with an update or your latest offer can serve as a reminder to clients that every stage of life is worth documenting.
- It saves you money on marketing by helping you nurture the leads you already have. Reaching out to find new clients is a constant process, so don’t forget to nurture the leads you already have. Your previous clients know you, trust you, and love your work. Because the relationship is already established, obtaining a booking with these clients requires less effort, which will save you a lot in the end.
- Build stronger relationships with your clients. Most clients really appreciate it when their photographer takes time to follow-up, but doing so by phone or with individual emails is time consuming and requires some intense organizational skills. By sending the occasional automated email, your client will see the effort, and that can go a long way.
- Increase traffic to your website. By including relevant links to your photography website inside your emails, you can encourage clients to visit your site. This is a great way to forward them to your content, and it’s also a great opportunity to increase your sales.
- Build interest and excitement. Everybody loves getting a deal. By offering sneak peeks and special offers in your emails, your clients will feel like they’re a part of something exclusive. This builds excitement and will keep your clients interested in what you’re up to or what you have to offer. When adding promotions or offers to your automated emails, remember a little bit goes a long way, and it’s more about the gesture than anything.
- Increase your passive income. Email marketing can also be a great way to remind past clients to make purchases other than just new photo sessions. For example, albums, wall art, greeting cards, and albums from past sessions can all make great gifts and sending well-timed reminders is an easy way to increase your passive income as a photographer.
- Successful photographers are efficient photographers. Automating your email marketing saves time and improves efficiency. As a photographer, you already have to wear so many hats throughout the week (and even day-to-day), so saving yourself the time it takes to follow up individually with each client is crucial for success. Less time behind the computer means more time behind the lens, doing what you love!
Even though it does help you work more efficiently in the long run, it’s important to understand that the idea behind automated email marketing for photographers isn’t to be lazy. Rather, it serves as an easy follow-up to help you remind couples of the importance of documenting each vital stage in life, and to do it in a way that doesn’t interrupt your workflow.
Photo credit: Lyndsay Cochran | Preset: Ektar 100
How Photographers Automate Email Marketing
You might be motivated to start email marketing for your photography business, but you have no idea where to start. You might be unfamiliar with automations and marketing and feel intimidated. Don’t worry—it’s not as difficult as it sounds! Thankfully, there are tools that can help automate this process and ensure that your clients keep you top-of-mind with each passing milestone.
What you need to find first is a tool you can use to house your newsletters. With this tool, you’ll enter your email list, create your newsletters, and set them with the automation you want (when they go out and under what conditions). You have quite a few options in terms of the email marketing tool you use. There’s Mailchimp, Convertkit, and Flodesk, but the highest recommended tool for photographers is Pic-Time—with good reason too.
Pic-Time is a great tool because it acts as a client gallery and allows you to build your own custom store, and they also have built-in marketing tools. That means that your store and your email automations can exist all in one platform, which makes things so much simpler for you.
Pic-Time has templates you can choose from and tons of customizable email automation settings. Plus they have top-notch designs that enhance your client’s shopping experience, making the purchasing process seamless and easy.
No matter which marketing tool you decide to go with, know that most of the options available are very user-friendly and easy to use with lots of simple drag-and-drop options.
Photo credit: Paulina Gradys | Preset: Fuji 400
Start Automating Your Email Marketing
Now you can start turning a one-time client into a lifelong client from the first contact, and let an automated system do much of the work for you.
Touching base with your previous clients and continuing to offer them your services as they experience new, once-in-a-lifetime moments is truly a win-win. You earn a client from wedding to baby (or for life!), and they are gifted meaningful photographs to cherish for a lifetime.
Feature photo credit: Celeste Boyer | Preset: Ektar 100