Styled shoots are wedding themed photo shoots that are put together by a variety of vendors with the intention of being published in a magazine. Creative professionals have mixed feelings about being involved in styled shoots. In most cases it is time for print (TFP) which means you work for free with the potential of being published as well as receiving photos of your work at the end. For some people working for free puts a bad taste in their mouth because time is money. I personally see a huge value in doing styled shoots. Participating in these shoots has a variety of benefits and has completely jump started my business.
The best thing about styled shoots is the opportunity to meet so many talented vendors and broaden your professional network. You establish a list of people you can recommend to clients and who will recommend you in return. Receiving referrals is the number one way of generating leads in the wedding industry. When a client receives a referral from another wedding vendor it’s the next best thing to receiving a referral from a friend. The client will be more confident in hiring you because you have established a positive reputation in the industry.
PORTFOLIO AND SOCIAL MEDIA CONTENT
Each detail of a styled shoot is carefully planned out so that the overall theme is cohesive, unique and showcases each vendors best work. You couldn’t possibly receive anything better to have in your portfolio or on social media. The more variety of content you have for social media, the better. Nobody wants to see the same things posted over and over again. When you do multiple styled shoots you all of a sudden have a vast library of images and videos to choose from.
As a photographer, wedding days are high pressure days where you only have one chance to get that perfect shot. Styled shoots are much more relaxed as far as your time and you are able to test out a variety of compositions and angles. If you haven’t shot many weddings before this is also a great way to get more experience and iron out your technique.
Every time you get published, the publication gives you badges that you can use on your website or social media to show clients that you have had your work showcased in a magazine. Having these badges makes you more professional and reputable to potential clients. It also makes you feel like a total badass.
Popular wedding magazines, whether they are in print or online, have hundreds of readers. When your styled shoot is published and you are listed as a vendor in their publication, all of those readers are now potential clients. It is essentially a free advertisement placed in a reputable high traffic area. So far we have been published in multiple magazines including Wedluxe, Knotsvilla, The Wedding Co., Love inc. and more. This has greatly increased our exposure.
GREATER WEBSITE TRAFFIC
Six months ago I had between 10-20 unique visitors to my website each month. As of today I am seeing over a thousand. This is greatly due to backlinks from reputable websites. Wedding websites generally get a large volume of visitors per day and if those publications are linking back to your website, search engines view you as important. The more relevant you seem to search engines, the higher you will be pushed up in the rankings. This greatly improves your chances of being found and brings much more traffic to your website.
As you can see styled shoots can make your company grow a lot faster and although you aren’t directly getting paid at the time of the shoot, you definitely profit off of participating in them. They have made a huge positive impact on my company and I highly recommend them to any wedding professional.