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Information is Power - Research Your Clients


How often have you looked at a company’s marketing piece and said “I could have done better, much better”? Knowing the style a client uses in marketing is so important, and yet is undervalued knowledge by many photographers.

For example, after looking at samples of a client’s past two or three years of marketing materials you may find the company’s style has not changed, or it has even become a bit dated. You now have an opportunity to present your fresh ideas. Yes, I know there are many, including the Art Director, who will influence the final look. But remember, you are first trying to land the job. After that you’ll get opportunities to interject your creativity into the shoot.

Another aspect of research is determing who is the AD, if there is one, and how long the person has been with the company. New ADs represent new opportunities. Frequently, a new AD looks for new photographers for no other reason than that they want a fresh look, which in turn will make them look good. At the same time, if you have a good relationship with an AD who moves to another company, you’ll want to be the first to call on him or her, and help make their transition successful.

Also, check out the marketing director, ad agency, history of product or service introductions to mine for additional golden nuggets of information that can give you the edge. Almost all the information you need is found on the prospect’s website and in their annual report, with specific follow-up searches on relevant key individuals, products or services, and agencies used. With about two hours work, you should have enough information to formulate a proposal that will differentiate you from those who don’t do their research. It is then up to you to use this valuable resource in your introductions, presentations and proposals.