Fashion photography is one medium where the visual elements do all the talking. Clicking perfect images is one part of the job, while the other significant part is finding an audience for your work. When it comes to photography, everybody has a subjective taste, and over time you will find just the right audience for you.
Step one of kick-starting any creative profession is to narrow down your brand’s visual guidelines. A great logo and the brand book will help you create some consistency when it comes to promotions. They also help in building a brand image online. Over time, your products will be synonymous with the colors and fonts of your company.
The idea is not to follow the herd. The internet has made content creation and promotion a straightforward process. It’s like being part of a huge job fair, and you cannot sit and hope people come to your booth. You need to make the right moves and play the right cards. You want more people to be interested in your work to build a much higher following.
Since fashion photography is all about the photos, you must have the right bank of your work before you want to make a career out of it. Vet your collection and make a list of the photos that you would call your best work. Put them on the front of the page of your website and banners of your social media. Let people see your best work first.
If you are looking for a head-start in the business, then these next few tips will make or change things for you. The idea is not to attempt each plan. Pick a handful of them and see them till the end. Here are the top seven tips.
1. Think Outside The Stills
If you are unsure if one photo can make a lasting impression, then use a picture slideshow maker that is available online. Turn your photos into an attractive video or animation. Use the best images and upbeat music to go with it. If you have many shots from the same project, use such an editor to cut them into a montage. Additionally, videos are the most consumed form of internet content. By not posting videos, you could be left behind in the race.
2. Plan and Schedule Social Media
Your job is not limited to posting your photos and promotion online. One cannot spend all day, every day on social media. You can use additional software or the pre-built feature of a social media platform to schedule posts and updates. Plan a monthly calendar of posting and schedule two weeks’ worth of content at a time. Once you have your posting on autopilot, you can spend more time on creation.
3. Make Your Instagram Interesting
Mindlessly posting on social media is not going to bear any fruits. Try to make your profile as unique as you can. Let your profile not just be a barrage of photos, add themes and concepts to it. To break the monotony of fashion photographs, use short videos or GIFs to create motion. Also, stick to a consistent format. We are not looking at just one photo at a time. When new users visit your profile, there should be sufficient consistency in your feed.
4. Aim To Build Fans Not Followers
Founder of Wired magazine, Kevin Kelly said in one of his most famous essays called “1000 fans”. The theory dictates that to be a successful business; you do not need a million fans; all you need are 1000 loyal fans. These are people who would buy any of the products you sell. As you start to post your work, see what kind of content gets more traction. Produce more such work to build those thousand fans.
5. Your Website Is More Than A Portfolio
You cannot use your website as just a place to display your work. You already have social media for that. Your website must be the endpoint for all the people who follow or like your work. You can make a poster and use creative call-to-actions to lead people to your site. This website will be a front for you to seek bookings, give exclusive content, or run a blog and newsletter.
6. What More Than Photos?
Your content online cannot be just about photos. That will sure build you a fanbase, but it’s a linear approach. Make the content around and about your domain. For example, run a blog about a recent project. Make a behind-the-scenes video of your shoots to give a more engaging view on your work. If you think you are up for it, do photo breakdowns and small tutorials. All of this helps drive a lot of traffic to your work.
7. Cross-Networking Helps
When you start from point zero, it is always demotivating to see slow growth. You can help boost this with the right kind of networking. Collaborate with brands or other photographers who have a much superior following. Ask people who like your photos to plug your work. Only work with brands that can offer value to your company. Ensure that the brands have a similar target demographic as yours, or else your work will be showcased to the wrong market.
Leave no stone unturned. If you feel like attempting an idea, a platform, or a trick — jump right into it. As time passes, you will know what works and what does not. A wise business person will leave the bad ideas behind and run with a handful of good options. With a classy avenue like fashion photography, your brand image is just as important as your work.
The sharpest tool at your disposal is consistency. When you start a new business, remember that the first couple of years will be prolonged. It takes time for a snow-ball to build in size. But if you stop the ball from rolling, it will never grow. Keep posting work, exploring new ideas, and giving back to the community. Over time your work will speak for itself.