Is Instagram Good Enough to Get Videography Clients?
Do you need a website or can you just use social media to attract new clients?
This question came up in my Facebook Group “The Freelance Videographer Community” and sparked some great conversation. So in this video, I am going to share the pros and cons of using websites or social media for attracting more clients to your business. And make sure to check out the group when this video is over, we have over 18,000 members and its the most supportive videographer group on Facebook. But I might be a little bias.
First I want to address Social Media:
The most common app that videographers claim is enough is Instagram, so we will be focusing on that for this video. Spoiler alert: social media is not enough but there are some great things you can do to leverage your following to drive business. Let’s get into it!
Right away, here is how you would use your Instagram account to get business.
You make some posts, stories, or engage with prospects. They see any of these actions and decide to check out your profile. Once they are on your profile they read your bio. In the bio you say ‘dm to book a shoot’ and they send you a message. Pretty simple funnel to start a conversation.
The goal is obviously to get them to message you.
Let’s talk about COST: Its free to create an account. Which is why so many of us think that it’s enough - we don’t want to ‘waste money’.
If your account is listed as a business this makes it easier to find when people are searching, but in the last year IG has made it more difficult to reach followers for businesses - which encourages them to spend money by running ads. As with all social media platforms, after a while the platforms start pushing monetization more than community which is leading many creators to other, newer platforms.
LEADS: Most people know all about that ‘link in your bio business’ but for those that don’t, you can put a link in your bio to an external website which is where most people send their prospects. But if you just use Instagram, you would have a prompt in your bio to DM you about rates or reach out about a project, etc.
Prospects find your account in the explore area, via hashtags, or follow you already on the platform. This is great because it allows you to have 1-to-1 conversations with leads immediately. But, it Limits your access to only prospects that have an account on that platform and happen to be on it when they decide to search for someone that does your service.
PROFESSIONALISM: The biggest problem with only using social media is a lack of professionalism. There are only a few times that I have hired someone for a service solely from their social media. I can only think of my tattoo artist who I was looking for on Instagram.
So that is proof that Instagram works. But if a business is looking for a videographer, they most likely aren’t scrolling through Instagram. Not having a website makes it less legit. Also, the other huge question is: are your ideal video clients on Instagram often? That’s for you to figure out.
REACH MORE PEOPLE: Use industry hashtags, follow ideal clients and engage with their posts, DM prospects, and post regularly to increase your reach. There are a ton of tactics to get more business using Instagram. I have a full playlist all about Instagram marketing but this can be done with LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and a few others.
Another big con of using Instagram is that Facebook, who owns Instagram, owns your audience and your access to them. If they don’t want businesses to have as much reach (like we have seen before) they can stunt it and ask for a toll. In 5 years, Instagram most likely won’t be the best way to reach people anymore since these platforms change all of the time. That is why I always try to grow my email list and send prospects to my platforms so I have full control of their experience.
Second, let's look at a Website:
Now let’s look at how a website can get prospects to reach out.
Someone is searching online for what you do: plumber, ice hockey coach, Mexican restaurant near me, and find your site.
They click, they look around, see a prompt to fill out a form to inquire about a project, and they fill it out. This is essentially the same process as Instagram. We are using content to attract ideal prospects and give them a way to reach out to us.
COST: Using a website costs money. Costs $200-1000 a year to create and keep up.
For your most basic website you will need to purchase a domain like SnaadtMedia.com to tie your website to.
Taking the cheap route and not having a custom domain ruins that professionalism piece I touched on earlier. And no professionalism equals a lack of trust. If your site looks sketchy, you look sketchy. In terms of building a website, you can use a site builder like WIx or Squarespace, hire it out to a friend or on Fiverr, or build it yourself if that is your skill set.
WHY a WEBSITE: You get access to the largest search engine in the world - Google. If you pair your website with a ‘Google My Business’ feature, you can also show up if someone is looking for your business in relation to where you live.
Quick story: I was chatting with a lady in my kickboxing class at my gym years ago and she mentioned she was getting married and looking for a videographer. I said that I was a wedding videographer and happy to help her out. After pulling my website up on her phone in front of me, she lit up and immediately said that I must be legit since I have a website and it looks so slick.
After looking at my wedding portfolio she said she was going to discuss with her fiance and reach out about pricing. Imagine this at scale and on autopilot happening every day when people find your website in search results.
REACH MORE PEOPLE: Optimize your site for discovery in search. This is commonly called SEO. I have an in depth video on strategy and tactics for finding the keywords that will bring you more traffic that is seeking you out. If you want access to some of those in depth trainings make sure to check out Solo Video Pro.com
You can improve your website traffic by two main tactics: ranking for search terms and posting new content, like a blog, on a regular basis.
But in general, you want to have your site focused on a specific keyword. People are searching for ‘video production’ on Google. Your site comes up, they click, look around your site, and fill out your contact form to inquire about a project. That flow is the goal.
The way to get there, is to rank for a search term that has thousands of searches a month so you have a better chance at having more people organically find your site and fill out a form.
After looking at both options which would I recommend? The Answer is to use both!
Use all of your platforms to direct people to your website and into your business. That includes your Instagram account!
For my workflow, I use social media, email, my blog, opt ins, everything points to a form on my website where I can capture their email and start a conversation about their project.
Having that clarity has kept my back end client communication process so much simpler. Someone reaches out via text, FB message, Instagram, etc. I just send them to my site contact form and then its the same process.
I have also started using a CRM to handle all of these conversations once they fill out a form. The CRM I am using is Studio Ninja. I will make a full video about it once I have used it for more months to work out the kinks and can give more feedback about it.
But if you want to check it out I will put a link in the description for $5 off a monthly subscription.
If you got value from this episode, make sure to hit that like button. If you have more questions about how to use your website or social media to grow your business, leave me a comment below and i will get back to you.
If you would like to learn how to structure your site, market your business, and add processes to make running your freelance business easier, make sure to check out Solo Video Pro.
Solo Video Pro is an online course, consisting of over 90+ video training courses to help you improve your business knowledge, give you pointed tactics for marketing and sales, and help you identify your path to success as a solo videographer. Students get the knowledge, community, and confidence to turn their hobby with a camera into a real business.
The lesson framework is broken down based on which stage of your business you are in, speeding your learning from years of trial and error to a ‘business in a box’ you can start growing right now.
We have students from all around the world and are building a really supportive group to help you take your business to the next level. I have even more business training on the blog and a free 1 hour webinar where I reveal some key strategies I teach in the course that you are welcome to check out.
Join now: www.SoloVideoPro.com