When you think of advertising, there’s a few things that most people think of as ‘necessary’ These are the first things most small businesses get created right when they’re starting out.
The first is business cards, and yes, they are necessary but nearly everyone is doing them wrong! See my article about photography business card design.
The second is brochures or flyers. Basically the same thing…
You know what I mean, that glossy piece of paper with some pretty pictures, a little bit of writing that explains what you do, usually followed by a price list and a phone number.
It’s designed to be as beautiful as possible to try and impress prospects, because everyone knows that if you spend bucket loads of cash on an amazing brochure, then you must be the right business to choose, right?…
3 Reasons Brochures Suck For Photographers
#1 – They’re Expensive!
Everything you do in your business should be done so that you can make more money. There shouldn’t be ‘necessary losses’!
It’s expensive to have those high quality glossy brochures and flyers printed out. You typically can’t do it on your home printer because it requires so much in, or laser printing. The printing companies know this, which is why they charge such extreme prices… plus the ink actually is pretty expensive!
Anytime in business where you’re putting a heap of money upfront into inventory that could be laying around in your garage for years… it’s a bad choice! You should keep inventory to an absolute minimum!
#2 – You Can’t Get Small Quantities!
This adds on to the fact that they’re expensive, because you can’t just buy a few. You simply can’t go into a printing shop and ask for 50 or 100 copies of your brochure, because they won’t do it!
The minimum most printing shops do is 1000 copies.
To give out 1000 copies to targeted prospects will probably take a long time, unless you’re taking them to a trade show or expo. And if you’re simply doing a ‘mailbox-bomb’ where you drop them into all the letterboxes in your area, then 99% of them will end up in the hands of someone who doesn’t care about photography, and will put your expensive brochure directly in the trash!
#3 – You Can’t Make Small Changes!
This one follows on again from the last one!…
Because you must print in large quantities it’s extremely difficult to make changes. You can’t simply change a few words, or fix a spelling error, or change the contact number. It would mean having to throw out all the flyers you’ve already had printed, and paying for a new batch, which would be a very costly and inefficient process!
What’s The Solution?
The solution to your photography brochure woes is the simple ‘letter’. Plain black text on white paper that you can print on your home printer!
It’s cheap, you can easily make change, and you can test small batches to see if the letter works.
You focus on the content of the letter, rather than the photos on the brochure and your logo, which really serve no purpose in the sales process.
I’ll go further into letter writing in an article in the near future. Until then, please hold off on printing out thousands of expensive brochures for your photography business, and instead brainstorm ideas for a unique offer, a great guarantee, and a killer headline!
Got questions? Leave them in the comments below and I’ll answer them personally!