A Marketing Survey Of Photo Buyers; How They Hire: What They Consider When They Buy Page 2

Know Their Needs
It is important to know your prospective client's market and needs before you start planning and producing self-promotions. Getting hired is not about a single thing you do or do not do, but a series of planned actions you take after your extensive research of your targeted photography client.

Cindy Rowe, manager/art production at Saatchi & Saatchi, says, "For me, paper promos are becoming less important. In fact, I throw away more now than I ever have before. But even if I throw them away, I will still either bookmark your website or jot a note in a notepad. I have not opened my bulging file drawer of promos in months but I can't bear to throw them away completely because every now and then, when I can't find something I need, I know it is still in `the drawer.' E-mails are a nuisance but it is what we all do now and it is much easier than opening those plastic shrink-wrap envelopes! So the bottom line for me is that I use a variety of ways of remembering who is out there."

Jigisha Bouverat, director of art buying at TBWA\Chiat\Day, adds, "Definitely send e-mails and direct mail that convey style and great work. They should be relevant to the industry clients we work with--targeting the right market is key. Don't call and ask if your promotional e-mail or mailer was received. Most art producers and editors receive calls all day long and putting them on the spot to remember a specific promotional piece is probably not a good idea. If your work is good and appropriate, you'll get a call for the portfolio or we'll take a look at your website."

Tom Biederbeck, editor at STEP inside design magazine, adds another perspective: "From an editor's point of view, the worst thing that an unsolicited query can do is waste time. Of course photographers can't laser-point queries, but giving some thought as to who should see which images is merely polite. With us, it will also be more likely to succeed. The bottom line is identifying a specific need our magazine has, and that means more than pretty pictures."

Your Marketing Approach
We received a lot of good feedback about what photographers should consider doing and not doing when marketing and promoting their work.

Things To Do
· Do offer to send information by e-mail first
· Do keep in touch every couple of months but not much more often
· Do send small, well-designed direct mail promos
· Do include web address and references
· Do send e-mail but the image must download quickly into the page
· Do send promos with more than one or two images that convey your style and passion
· Do carefully choose portfolio images organized around a theme or topic

Things Not To Do
· Do not say you are the best or the cheapest
· Do not send portfolios without contacting the client first
· Do not call constantly, if they want to see more they will let you know
· Do not send promos that don't relate to their business
· Do not send promos bigger than 8x10"

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