Starting your own business is not exactly easy. In fact, it is hard. Stupid hard. Being a good photographer is step one out of about a thousand steps. You also have to be an expert at organization, money management, customer service, design, marketing, and on goes the list.
I have found marketing to be one of the most overwhelming things on that list. We all want customers to walk through the door, so we read and read and read, and search and search and search for that easy answer that will land a bunch of money in our pockets.
Well, an easy answer may be impossible to find, but I wanted to pass along a few of the resources that have helped me conquer the marketing beast.
#1: Zag by Marty Neumeier
Zag is an incredible marketing and branding book written by Marty Neumeier. It is concise, effective, and it follows its own strategies. Neumeier packs so much marketing goodness into each little word that you will just devour this book. Neumeier teaches you how to zag when everyone else is off zigging. He doesn't just tell you to be different, he shows you how to be different. Then, he shows you how to market it. Get your highlighter ready, you are going to need it!
IttyBiz is full of daily goodness to help you keep your small business on the right track. Naomi is the voice behind the blog. She has a fowl mouth and a big heart, and she seriously knows her stuff. I'm a total IttyBiz addict. Get on that mailing list; it is worth its weight in gold.
Copyblogger is similar to IttyBiz, a non-photography blog focused on marketing. Copyblogger has fantastic content. So fantastic that it's even in their catchphrase: Compelling Content is the New Advertising. Check them out and get to learnin'.
Check out the resources, but please know that I am no expert. My business is still in its baby stages, and I am fumbling around daily trying to figure out how to find my customers. I do hope, though, that these materials can help you muddle through some of the marketing mishaps that you may have.
And... I would LOVE to hear your marketing stories. Is there a resource out there that changed your life? Did you have a break through that brought droves of people to your door? Are you stuck? Do you have a thousand questions and no answers? I want to hear your story.