Marketing Campaigns for Photographers – Refer a FriendBy
This is the fifth in our series looking at different marketing campaigns for photographers.
Also in this series:
If you have any campaign ideas or suggestions then please use the comments or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Marketing Campaigns for Photographers #5 Refer a Friend
The last couple of weeks have all been based around social media so I thought it was time for a marketing campaign that was a little more old school.
Just because having a refer a friend scheme is an old idea doesn’t mean it isn’t a great one. In fact you see it in pretty much every high street business in some way or another so you could say people expect it.
I’m sure you know this one but it’s as simple as “If you recommend me to a friend then you’ll get a ………”
Making it work…..
Firstly you need a couple of very important things:
- Work that clients like and are happy to pay good money for
- Something that they want that they haven’t already got
In other words they have got to want to refer you and they have got to want what you offer as a reward.
Depending on what type of photography you are offering depends on what you are offering as a carrot on a stick to entice people to recommend you.
If you are a newborn baby photography then perhaps having a free shoot as a gift is nice and easy. Or how about a framed print?
Raising the game
I’m sure you’ve all heard the term “Under promise over deliver” and there’s no reason why your refer a friend gift can’t do just that. Offer a free print and give them a framed one…. that sort of thing.
Or how about offering both the old and the new client a gift?
Don’t the best clients refer you anyway?
True…. but here’s the shocking truth….. they’re not thinking about you 24/7 and they probably don’t subscribe to your blog with all of it’s “latest offers”.
The beauty of a refer a friend scheme is that it gives you a reason to stay in contact with you clients and there’s lots of different ways you can do it:
- Use Facebook, Twitter or whatever they use.
- Send Mail outs
- Even that things called a telephone….
- or send the odd text.
Doing all these things (in moderation of course) is just a way of reminding people that you’re still out there.
How to promote
Have your promotion everywhere. Put it on your website, on invoices, in your email signature……everywhere. Don’t asume that because you wrote the blog post a couple of months ago that anyone has actually read it.
A couple of things to avoid
“Refer a friend and get 10% off your next order”
So even though I’ve spent $1000 with you and referred you to my friend who will probably spend that same if not more ……I still have to spend more money to take advantage of your offer?!?!?!
Surprisingly, people don’t really like this sort of thing!
Offering the wrong gift to the wrong client.
It’s good practice to have 2 or 3 options for what you offer…… everybody wants different things…. to an extent.
Tracking the effectiveness
Really easy to track in terms of it’s success but it’s also worth keeping note of what people are responding to. Did they text you back with a friend’s number? Did they suggest a friend for you on Facebook?
To make the promotion work even better you could have a contact form on your website where clients can send you their friends details (with their permission) but this isn’t something I’ve tried and I have a feeling not many people will go for this.
But with all of these campaigns what works for some might not work for others and vice versa. Experiment, experiment, experiment.
Download our action plan sheet to help you get organised and create your own campaign.
For a little bit more guidance read the introductory article or this series:
I divide my time between being a photographer, retoucher, photography blogger and podcaster. Deep down I like to consider myself a portrait photographer and in my short 10 ten years in the business I’ve taken over 100,000 people’s studio portraits. When I’m not taking pictures I’m writing about it, most of my rambles can be found daily at http://photocreative365.com.
Photo Credit: © 2010 Michael Shilling
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