By Alan Perlman
Let’s assume for a second that you’ve already started your aerial photography company. You’re a smart, sound, rule-abiding pilot. You’ve done a handful of projects for friends, family members, and local businesses.
You’ve got a solid understanding of image and video processing strategies and know how to get those beautifully sharp aerial shots clients drool over.
But you’re looking to drum up more business. You know the drone services market is exploding, and you want a piece of the pie.
Here are 5 marketing tips you can use to generate more leads for your drone photography business:
1. Zero-in on your buyer persona, establish your niche, and design a website that makes it crystal clear what your company is about.
Oof, that’s a mouthful.
Here’s what I’m trying to say. As an expert drone pilot, you could make money in a variety of ways—landscape surveying, real estate photography, and wedding photography, to name a few. You may very well have completed a variety of these projects in your efforts thus far.
But the reality is, the sooner you can focus in on one particular type of service, the stronger your business will become, the easier it is to market, and the quicker you’ll scale.
Take a look at your website. Are you offering “aerial photography services,” or are you offering “residential real estate aerial photography for realtors in Nashville, TN?” All else being equal, if I was a real estate broker in Nashville, I’d much rather go with the second company.
I’m not necessarily saying you should ignore other business if it comes your way, but the more targeted and specific you can get with your marketing messaging, the easier it is for your prospects to identify with and to trust you.
2. Learn a bit about SEO.
At the end of the day, the fundamentals of optimizing your website for search engines, AKA search engine optimization (SEO), isn’t all that tricky.
First, you think about your target customers, then you brainstorm a list of potential keywords they might type into Google, and then you make sure those keywords are showing up throughout your website in an optimal way. Yes, it can take some time to learn the nuances of SEO, but those are the basics.
Keep in mind, many of you are likely focusing your business within a specific geography—in your keyword research, don’t forget that people may be typing in things like “aerial photography Nashville” or “hire drone video Las Vegas.” Use those local area terms to your advantage in your SEO strategy.
3. Use lead magnets to reel in business leads.
Very few people who visit your website are ready to buy. A “lead magnet” is something that you offer for free to your prospects in exchange for an email address (and maybe some other basic information).
As a small business owner, your contact database is your most precious asset, and you should be doing everything you can to increase the number of email addresses you’re adding to your list each week. Even if these folks aren’t ready to buy now, they might be sometime soon.
Examples of lead magnets include eBooks, checklists, case studies, webinars and email series. If you’re targeting real estate brokers, you could create a short, downloadable offer called 9 Ways Real Estate Brokers Can Use Aerial Videography to Boost Business. You’d deliver that offer to your readers in exchange for an email address.
4. Nix the “contact us” language.
I’ve never seen a “contact us” page perform that well.
Instead, use targeted landing pages to promote your marketing offers and to entice your website visitors to interact with your company. The sole purpose of a landing page is to convert your website visitors into leads, so make sure you’re creating a page without too much distraction, a page that promotes one particular action a user is supposed to take.
Over time, you’ll have different landing pages for different actions you want your users to take: “request a quote,” “ask an expert,” “download an eBook,” “register for our free email series,” etc.
5. Use email marketing to nurture your leads.
According to the Direct Marketing Association, for every $1 you spend on email marketing, you get $42 back. That’s a heck of a return!
You’ve done all this work to capture the attention of your prospects. Now it’s time to keep the relationship alive, to stay top-of-mind and to continuously offer value with every email you send.
Share your successes, additional tips, fun news about the drone industry, special promotions or discounts. Send emails on a regular basis to your list, and monitor your open and click-through rates to understand which content performs best.
Oh, and don’t forget to register your company at JobforDrones.com!
Do you own an aerial photography or videography business? What tips would you add to this list?
Alan Perlman is a drone hobbyist and marketing consultant who runs UAV Coach, a website that helps to push the drone community forward with educational and inspirational content and training.