How You and Your Business Can Stand out in an Instant Gratification Market
Jun 21, 2019
If you're reading this post, you love photography, whether in a hobbyist or professional capacity.
And if you cruise Facebook or Instagram even once in awhile, you'll notice something. There are, like, a bazillion photographers, huh?! A bazillion individuals with a bazillion different kinds of image capturing devices and pieces of equipment. Alluring, intriguing, downright bad, it's easy to feel a bit lost.
You watch other photographers in your genre or who also just got their start appearing to make a name for themselves through online contests and hashtag features. You may even wonder what it will take for your work to be noticed, feel the green monster of envy, or consider shelving your camera for good.
What are they doing that you aren't?
Let me tell you, friend, it takes a lot of work to accomplish things that may seem effortless to someone observing from 'outside'. I also want to tell you that you can accomplish anything you set your mind to, with a ton of effort, bravery, and know-how! Here are a few to-do items to get you pointed in the right direction!
No one is you and that is your power.
If you want to stand out, you need to have a vision, embrace your style, and own it. In this industry, we like to say that it's alright to be inspired by another photographer, but be original! What pulls at your heartstrings? Why do you do this? Where do you hope to see yourself in 5 years? Ten years? Why is the art of photography a priority for you? Answering these questions honestly will help you find your "why".
Network on your own terms.
Get out there! Teach an introductory camera class for adults or children, volunteer for an organization that has a photography needs, start a local photography group, and attend conferences, retreats, and workshops. If you're introverted, find a photography Facebook Group that aligns with your goals and interests. Then chat, message, find a mentor, join an ongoing personal project challenge, and enter contests.
Be honest with yourself.
This may read as an oversimplification, but it's equally as important as my other points. In order to be a successful photographer, you need to understand the fundamentals of photography. You can put in all the work and then some, but if you have not developed your talent and don't have quality photographs as your foundation, you probably won't be able to grow your business or your recognition. Once you know the basic elements of image creation, continue to educate yourself. Never stop learning. You know the rules? Learn how to break them and make it look fabulous. Share what you have learned with others.
Don't wait for opportunity to find you.
Is there another local photographer you'd like to get to know? Or even a photographer across the country? Across the world? Introduce yourself! Forge friendships, create together, discuss business and ideas. Work hard together and hold each other accountable. Many opportunities go unclaimed simply because people aren't willing to pick them up. Make your dreams happen!
As the saying goes, luck has nothing to do with it. Standing out takes perseverance, diligence, fearlessness, and fortitude. You will have to take chances. You will need to make yourself uncomfortable. You will invest a lot of time into your business and your work. And you will thrive!