I mentioned this in one of my first articles at Current Photographer in 10 Different Ways to Set Yourself Apart as a Photographer. In fact it was my top suggestion.
Your thing doesn’t have to be your USP but it should be something that people remember you for and something that sets you apart from the crowd. I guess by definition that is a unique selling point but it’s a little more abstract than that.
Mike Larson and Kevin Swan are perfect examples of photographers who have become renowned for their ‘thing’ (the camera toss). I imagine every wedding guest who watches a photographer fling a five grand rig into the air will not forget about them quickly. As Kevin points out “It’s a great icebreaker” but in reality it’s a powerful marketing tool.
Another example of a thing is Da Grip from Joe McNally. Joe isn’t short on career achievements but surely being known for the way you hold your camera is pretty cool. I’ve tried ‘inventing’ my own Steady Grip but unfortunately the photographic community has yet to shower me with praise…. oh well 😉
The first thing you need to do is find out if you already have a thing. It’s much easier to realise your own quirkiness rather than to manufacture something.
- How do you work that’s different from others?
- Is there something in particular that does set you apart?
Your thing doesn’t have to be completely unique. The best ideas aren’t always the newest ones….. just the ones that get talked out the most…… I guess that’s down to good marketing and we’ll talk a little bit more about that next week.
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Michael has been working as a photographer for the last ten years. In that time he has shot over 100,000 peoples’ portraits and worked in four different continents. In 2001 Michael graduated with a degree in photography from Manchester Metropolitan University.