As a creative talent rep who is approached with hundreds of agency submissions per day, one question I am regularly asked by photographers is “how do I make my work stand out from the rest?” Great question! The answer is simple: it’s all about your branding. Having a unique, consistent and recognizable brand could determine whether an art director considers you for their next big campaign, or if an agent picks you up as a new photographer on their roster.
The key to branding is consistency. Design a simple logo that doesn’t take away from your images and is included in the header of your website, the cover of your Facebook page, the bottom of every promo, etc. This will imprint your brand into the viewer’s mind, and after seeing it a few times it will subconsciously force recognition. A potential client or rep should be able to look at an image or series of images and be able to recognize who photographed it.
With the prevalence of social media, having a distinct and clear style is about 60% of your brand, while the other 40% is made up of the tools you use to promote it. The first step is figuring out the best ways to publicize yourself as a photographer in your particular market. There are many ways to do this, such as great website SEO and ads, direct mail promos, portfolio sites, social media marketing (Facebook, Instagram, WordPress, Tumblr) and creative email campaigns. Many aspiring photographers come to me asking how they can find the right people to contact with these materials at the companies they want to shoot for. Agency Access makes getting in touch with the art directors, art buyers, creative directors and some of the biggest and most exclusive companies worldwide, as simple as clicking a button. They have multiple databases depending on your target market that provide mailing addresses, phone numbers and emails to help ensure your brand is seen by the people who matter most to you.
Agency Access also sponsors incredibly beneficial seminars and networking events, which I encourage all photographers to take advantage of. These gatherings are fantastic, and provide great opportunities to build your name. Not only does the potential client or agent get to see the consistency in your style and brand, but they are also able to put a face to it. Once you’ve made the personal connection, they are more likely to respond when emailed or called because you have now engraved your brand into their mind with your logo and a consistent style. Bring cards and promos with your logo clearly branded on them, making sure every person you meet gets one. There is nothing more important than networking and building relationships with people in your field. The best advice that I could give is to take every networking opportunity that comes your way and make as many friends as you possibly can. Follow up and continue those friendships after the event has passed. Building relationships is the best and most effective way to brand yourself as a photographer.
Most art directors and agents get hundreds of photography submissions per day. A photographer with a distinct and recognizable brand is almost always pulled from the pile of submissions before someone that the reviewer doesn’t recognize in any way. Create that logo, mail those promos, get to those networking events related to your field of work and start your journey down a successful road of branding.
Danielle Gruberger has had a love for photography, fashion and beauty her entire life. At a young age she realized that her true dream was to combine her passions and represent the best creative talent in the industry. Danielle worked hard to make her vision a reality and built a roster of some of the most talented and sought-after celebrity, fashion, sports and advertising photographers in the industry. As her company DGReps developed and her client base began to expand, she was able to acquire some of the industry’s leading wardrobe stylists, makeup artists and hair stylists. DGReps is now known as one of the most diverse creative talent firms in Los Angeles.
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