There are two generalized sides to life as a photographer…
The first side is the photography aspect; taking a client from booking to delivery including all the fun parts like working together to build the perfect wardrobe for their session, being able to photograph in amazing locations with storm clouds rolling in and clients willing to bravely jump into the water, and editing the images so they really pop and both wow your client and bring them to tears as they reflect on a life well lived and the memories made with the ones they love.
The second side is the business aspect; marketing, website, contracts, teaching workshops, and all the other pieces that turn yourself from a hobby photographer into a full fledged business owner who makes a living doing what they love.
The business side is often where we can feel a bit of a disconnect. We love to be behind our lens shooting emotive moments for clients who have fallen in love with our unique style of creating. We love delivering images to clients who have longed for photographs to hang on their walls that proudly declare they were here, they existed, and they lived and loved passionately. The emails back and forth, the social media presence, the ‘getting paid’ aspect, and more, are where we feel a little lacklustre.
Blogging is one of those areas we can often feel out of our element doing. Aside from blogging our sessions (which I will not be touching on in this blog post because you should already be doing it!) with a paragraph we fluffed up using thesaurus.com, what else should we be blogging about? Below are my top 5 tips for how to blog as a photographer so you can make the most of this feature to help you gain business, build client trust and help other photographers grow a community.
1 – Make a List
Grab a pen and paper or open a new document on Google Drive and start by making a list of anything and everything that you’d want to read about. This list should be comprehensive. Try breaking the list down into a few sections;
- ‘what I’d like to read as a photographer’
- ‘what I’d like to read as a client’
- ‘what I’d like to read as a person trying to make the most of life’.
Each of these sections lends itself beautifully to various topics and ideas.
For example, as a photographer, you might want to read about workflow hacks, culling process tips, prompts and posing information, the gear photographers you admire use or even best places to shoot in different areas. All of these make wonderful topics that YOU can write about! Your workflow, how you pose your clients and your best places to shoot in your area can be all wonderful information you share with other photographers.
As a client, information on the best clothing to wear, how to prepare for a shoot, or even a ‘FAQ blog’ could be great!
As an individual running a business, sharing about how you turn ‘off’ from work to tune ‘in’ to your family and friends can be helpful for others, your favorite activities to de-stress or even sharing a few favorite recipes you love to cook make great posts that show your personality and allow others to connect with you on a deeper level.
2 – Set a Writing Schedule.
Setting a blogging schedule will be the most helpful part of ensuring you blog consistently. Your schedule can be whatever works best for you! Alternating between session blogs and blogs from the list you made above will be the best way to ensure you don’t feel tied to your computer writing all day long, while still showcasing your work and using your blog for your portfolio. Once your schedule is set, pick the blogs you want to write and give them deadlines. Put these deadlines into a calendar and set to write them on a date when you know you’ll be at your computer. For example, if you tend to respond to emails from the weekend every Monday morning, try to tack on writing a blog after. Write 1 to 2 blogs each time you sit down to get a nice supply ready for when busy seasons arrive.
3 – Write, Research, Edit.
If you’ve been reading my blogs, you may have noticed I write in a consistent format.
I start by giving you an introduction paragraph or two as to what the blog will be about.
Next, I offer the bulk of the text in a ‘tip’ or ‘point form’ format for easy reading.
I then close with a concluding paragraph.
Follow this format and begin to write an introduction for your blog.
A good introduction will tell you exactly what you’ll be sharing in the blog post, why it’s important, and what problem it will help solve.
The point form tips making up the bulk of the content will be the main points you want people to consider. Write these out and do any supplemental research. There’s generally stats for everything, so a quick Google search can provide additional insight or supportive material for your post. Even looking up other blogs on the same topic can spur your imagination and help you dig deeper to share information others aren’t!
End with your closing paragraph and keep it short and sweet.
Once it’s written, it’s time to edit. Read through your blog and look for word choice, ensure your points are coming across clear, and if you can add or remove any information. I find it’s often helpful to step away from the blog for a few minutes, then come back to it, so you have a ‘fresh eye’ feel to the topic. Don’t step away for too long, though! You may run the risk of moving onto a new task and never coming back to editing!
4 – Publish or Schedule your blog
Now that your blog is edited and you are pleased with the content, it’s time to share it with your audience! Go into the backend of your website and upload your content. Be sure to include a header image that matches what you are writing about. As a photographer, the best idea is to take the image yourself. Once the blog looks how you’d like it to be, publish or schedule it for a specific publish date. Scheduling your blog posts in advance is a key way to ensure you are going to be consistently releasing content. Releasing consistent content is one way to build client trust– your following will know when they can expect new and relevant content and they will look forward to hearing your thoughts and ideas.
5 – Promote!
After spending time creating a list of topics for your blog post, scheduling time into your calendar to write, writing, researching and editing a post, you want to be sure your following knows the blog is there for them to read! Schedule a coordinating post on Instagram, or at least share in your story and use the ‘swipe up’ feature to guide your following to your post. Send out a newsletter with some of the content or share the link in Facebook groups you are actively involved in. Sharing valuable information with a community who you know will want to hear it is a key factor in becoming a recognized contributor who adds value to a community of like minded individuals.
Blogging is a wonderful way to share your wild; be honest, embrace your story, share your struggles and triumphs, and connect on a deeper level with those who want to connect with you. As photographers our work will often speak for us, but that doesn’t mean we should neglect our actual voice. We should use our voice to enhance the imagery we pour our soul into creating for our clients. Try out these tips for How To Blog and let me know how they work for you! I can’t wait to see what you write!