In this article, I’m going to share nine tips on how to start a photography blog.
I want to help you get going with blog writing as there are so many potential benefits of blogging for your photography business. So, if you’ve not yet started a photography blog but are curious about how blogging can help you to attract more photography clients, then keep reading.
Social media marketing vs blogging as a photographer
If you invest most of your marketing time and efforts into social media marketing and don’t do a lot of other digital marketing, you should know that there’s a risk to this approach.
You don’t own or have control of social media platforms, and your visibility there is always going to be limited by the algorithm.
Social media content also only remains visible for hours or days at most usually, so you can find yourself having to constantly be creating new content just to keep showing up in the newsfeed. As you’ll know, this can become very time-consuming!
I believe that a better idea is to put more effort into blogging because it’s a great way to promote yourself and your photography on a platform that you do control. Arguably, it also delivers a far greater return on investment over time too.
Search engine optimised blog articles can boost your photography website’s visibility on Google, and perhaps even secure you a place on that coveted first page of search results for relevant keyword phrases.
Your blog articles can also drive valuable traffic to your website for years – long after they have been published – which means that if you put the effort in now, you could be reaping the rewards for years to come. Blogs I wrote years ago are still driving thousands of visits to my website each year now, and your blog articles could too.
Related reading: Why bother creating content for your photography blog?
Nine things to consider before you start a photography blog
So, if you’ve decided you’d like to start a photography blog, here’s a list of nine things I suggest that you have a think about before you begin:
1. Decide on your blogging platform
There are several ways to start a photography blog, but it’s most likely that you’ll want to blog directly on your website and that may be one such as Squarespace or WordPress. Both of these platforms are popular with photographers and, thankfully, are intuitive and easy to use with a bit of practice.
If you’ve never written a single blog article before, take some time to play around on your chosen platform and discover the basic blogging features and functionality. In Squarespace, this area is the ‘Blog’ area. In WordPress, you’ll want to be in the ‘Posts’ section.
2. Ensure you have Google tools linked to your photography blog
When you start blogging, it’s crucial that you have your photography website connected to Google Analytics and Google Search Console. Chances are, you’ll already have this setup, but I thought it was worth mentioning here just in case.
These Google tools will reveal important information such as website traffic data and will help you to see which pages and blog articles are attracting the most (and least) clicks over a given period of time.
Check this regularly after starting your photography blog – ideally, once per month – to review how your blog articles perform.
3. Define what you hope to achieve through blogging
Now with the tech side sorted, let’s think about the strategy behind blogging.
Before you start a photography blog, you’ll need to consider what you want to accomplish from the effort you’re going to put in. What’s the goal?
Common reasons for wanting to start a photography blog are:
- to get your website more visible online
- to build awareness of your photography brand and your products and services
- to get your photography website listed higher in Google search results
- to position yourself as an expert in your photography niche
- to attract more relevant traffic (potential customers, collaborators etc.) to your website
- to secure more photography clients or to sell more of your photography products.
Your goal may be one, or all, of these. Whatever it is, write it down because being clear on this will help you stay focused on what you’re trying to achieve. Also, in the future, you can then review whether your blogging efforts are paying off and are actually helping you to achieve your goals or not.
Related reading: Why and how to set strategic goals for your photography business
4. Choose a niche
Once you’re clear on what you want to achieve from blogging, the next thing to consider is what you’ll blog about.
I’ll be honest, blogging takes considerable time, and it’s something that you’ll need to commit to in the longer term if you are to see your blogs driving a decent amount of traffic to your website and helping you attract clients. So, of course, you won’t want to waste that time creating articles that aren’t going to play a strategic role in moving your business forward.
Therefore, your blog should primarily be about your photography services and topics that allow you to demonstrate your expertise as a professional photographer.
Yes, your photography blog can also include articles about occasional personal or passion projects of yours, of course – it’s your blog after all! You can also even write about topics unrelated to photography every now and then if they’re about things that will still interest your target audience.
When getting started though, I advise you to ensure that the majority of your blog articles are linked to the photography services that you want to be booked for. That way, you’ll attract the type of people who are searching for such information online. These will be the people most likely to make a booking with you.
5. Define your ideal blog reader
When you come to start a photography blog, it’s important to know who you are writing for. You’ll need to be able to picture them clearly in your mind so that you can write articles that will interest them and feel relevant to them.
Your ideal blog reader is likely to be your ideal client – someone who is potentially in the market for the photography services or products that you offer.
Ideally, you’d have an appreciation of their personal circumstances and their lifestyle, and an insight into their values, their attitudes and their likes and dislikes, since these all shape who they are as people and influence their buying decisions.
If you’re unsure about what your ideal clients would find useful to read about in your blog, then revisit your ideal client avatar for inspiration (or do this process for the first time if it’s something you’ve not done before). I have a free worksheet available to help you map this out within this article about how to attract more of your ideal photography clients.
Knowing your ideal reader (and ideal client) will help you to pick topics to write about that would attract their attention and that they would be interested to read.
Hopefully, you might know your intended reader so well that you can even make them feel that you have written your blog article, especially for them. Through your words, you can demonstrate empathy. You can show that you understand their needs and that you have the perfect solution (i.e. your service) for them.
6. Brainstorm blog ideas based on your ideal reader
Next, brainstorm specific blog ideas. Have a think about what topics your ideal clients are searching for on Google.
- What is it that they want to know about a photography service such as the one you offer?
- What might they find useful to understand about the process?
- What questions might they have before they book a photographer like you?
- What tips or advice could you share that would help to position you as a photography expert that they would be wise to hire?
Answering commonly asked questions about your service is a great place to start. Chances are if one client has asked a particular question, then others considering hiring you will want to know the answer too.
You can use your blog as a customer service channel – to address common concerns and to reassure potential customers about the process of hiring you and what they can expect from your service.
Capture your blog ideas in one place, whether in a journal or in an app such as Trello, so that you can keep adding to the list as inspiration strikes in the future, and to stay organised.
7. Make a blog plan
It’s easy to start something new like a blog, but it’s harder to maintain momentum. A blog plan – also known as a content calendar or editorial calendar – will help you to stick to creating blog content frequently.
If you don’t have a plan, you’ll be more likely to blog haphazardly, and perhaps even end up not blogging for months at a time.
You’ll need to decide how often you’ll plan to blog, and then map this out into a schedule to follow. Will you write every day? Weekly? Fortnightly? Monthly?
There are no set rules around how frequently you should blog, but you’ll gain more traction with SEO if you are blogging regularly and consistently.
I would suggest when you first start a photography blog aim for once per week or fortnight, then you can always reduce it to monthly in the future once you’ve built up an archive of blog content.
8. Write something (anything!)
Knowing how to start a photography blog, as in deciding what words to use and knowing how to craft compelling copy, can be difficult. Even though you might know what you want to say, the words may not flow. You may not find writing easy. It’s a skill that needs to be practised, and may not come naturally.
The key thing though is just to start – to get something down. Write an ‘ugly first draft’, accepting that it may not be your best work but at least it’s something! Then, come back to it, edit it and refine it until it’s something that you’re happier with.
If you’d find it easier, you could always record yourself talking about the topic you’re wanting to write about. Then, you can have that voice recording transcribed using a service such as Otter.ai (affiliate link).
9. Promote your blog
Once you have written something that you are happy to publish, and have added examples of your photography throughout, get it live on the site. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that your work is done at this point though. This is actually when the work begins!
The writing of a blog should actually represent about 20% of the effort. A further 80% of your effort should be on promoting the blog to get it seen.
There are several ways to promote your blog articles.
- You can share links on your social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest, and in Facebook groups where your audience spends time (if allowed by the group owner).
- You can also send out your blogs to your email marketing list (start one today if you haven’t already got one!).
- You can also direct people to your blog articles by creating videos or podcast episodes about the topic and then including the URL in the video description area or podcast show notes.
- You could also offer to guest blog for other websites on similar topics and then direct them back to your own site and related articles.
- And more!
For further tips and inspiration read how to promote your photography blog.
So, that’s how to start a photography blog!
I hope that this has helped you to understand what you need to consider if you’re keen to start a photography blog.
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