How the HECK do you write a photography blog when you’re not a writer?! We’re here to help! Skillful blogging is not as cringeworthy as you think!
Why is blogging important?
Photography is a highly personal service. Your clients are inviting you to capture important moments and milestones in their lives, so you need to establish that you are trustworthy through your words! This is why we need to connect. We want our clients to think to themselves while on our website, “I would TOTALLY be friends with her/him in real life!!”
A blog is the best way to connect to future clients. It gives you the perfect platform to not only showcase your work, but it also allows your client a glimpse into your personality that photos can’t. What is important to you? Why did you become a photographer? How do you treat and talk to your clients? All of these things come through your words!
Another perk is that people often share the blog with their photos, meaning YOU get free advertising! Word of mouth marketing is not only the BEST form of marketing in many respects, but it’s also pretty darn inexpensive!!
Step one, CHILL OUT and come up with a topic.
Seriously, the more you freak out about writing something, the more you’re going to put it off. Trust me; this happens to the best of us. The most helpful way to knock out a blog/article is to do it when you’re feeling inspired. So…try not to overthink anything and just go with the flow. The first thing you have to do is decide WHAT to write about and then decide on the title.
This can be one of two things:
- A photography session. In this case, you can write (Names, Place, Type of Session). For example: “James and Katie, Coronado Ferry Landing Engagement.”
- A personal post. If you go the personal route, come up with something short and sweet. For example, “Relationship Chronicles: When I Saw my Future Husband do a Somersault on the Dance Floor.” (This happened the first night I met my husband. Needless to say, it took me nine years to finally say yes.)
The Basics of SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
Now, let’s briefly chat about SEO (also known as Search Engine Optimization). This is probably something you’ve heard about, but don’t know much about. SEO is the method of increasing the quantity and quality of organic traffic to your website through search engine results. Basically, getting ranked on Google. Your goal is that when someone searches, “Photographers in (your city),” that you rank on the first page. Now, there are about a bazillion more things you can learn about SEO, so keep it simple at first and learn the basics.
Outline and plan your blog/article.
Before I write anything, I come up with a title and four to five subheadings that I can then take them piece by piece! That allows you to organize your thoughts effectively. At this point, you can change the order to make sure that the blog flows well. This is how I tend to outline:
- Paragraph 1: Intro with a short story! This can be about your first communication with your client, a funny story they told you, something funny or unique that happened on the session.
- Paragraph 2: Write about your client. Tell us about their personality, what they love to do, how much they love their family (or their dog), really give us a sense of who they are!
- Paragraph 3: Write TO your client. Seriously, send them a little-personalized note at the end of a blog because THEY are going to be reading it, right? This also tells any FUTURE clients who are learning that you care about your clients enough to personally thank them on a public forum.
Your goal is to connect with your existing clients and future clients!
Personal Post: Outlining will be vastly different depending on what you choose to write about. Personal posts allow your clients to get to know you as a person, rather than a sterile business. You can be as personal, or as reserved as you want, but remember that people want to CONNECT with you on a deeper level.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Chronicle a time in your life or a person in your life that is important to you.
- Tell us how you met your partner.
- Describe a lesson you’ve learned from your photography clients.
- Explain WHY you have chosen to get into photography.
- Detail a funny parenting fail.
- Illustrate a time you wanted to quit something and didn’t.
- Express yourself about a time you’ve felt vulnerable and how you overcame an obstacle.
- Outline a photography tip for your client, like how to dress for a session.
Add your photos!
If you’re blogging a session, include 5-10 of THE best images from the day! This is a great way to get the hype going before you deliver a gallery! For example, you can send a sneak peek on day one, the blog on day four, and the full gallery on day seven.
When you include your photos, remember to do the following:
- Keep the images consistent in editing style.
- Pair varied images together.
- Choose images with different composition (you don’t want them to all look the same).
Remember, it’s ok to take a break.
A lot of writing comes from inspiration, so it’s ok to take a break when you’re just not feeling it. Yes, you want to get it done, but I promise you that your blog post will FEEL more genuine if you write it WHEN YOU WANT TO WRITE IT, and not because you HAVE to write it. Some days you’ll knock out two posts, and some days you’ll stare blankly at your screen. When that happens, walk away and come back at a later time. BUT COME BACK. Remove the pressure, get out of your head, and simply remember that you intend to share your love for photography and your clients in your blog. If you REALLY don’t know what to write, check out this tutorial.