If you need to relocate your photography business, this blog post is for you! In the past, I had to move my business not once, but TWICE!! As a wedding photographer, you know that we normally book weddings approximately 6-12 months in advance, so a move could have cost me a full year’s income.
I started my photography business in Lynchburg, Virginia 10 years ago. About 5 years ago, my family and I moved to the Northern Virginia area, close to Washington D.C.
Now, you might be thinking… that’s in the same state, Alina! And it is! However, there is an almost 4 hours drive between the two locations. As a mom, I rarely travel for weddings anymore, so I needed to get established in the cities surrounding my new area.
Here are the steps you can take to relocate your photography business to a new location!
1. Update Your Local SEO
The very first thing I did when I found out about our move was to update my local SEO. What does that mean?! SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is how high your website ranks on Google when people search for the services that you have to offer.
Google has been my #1 lead generation source ever since I started my photography business. At the time, my website was ranking on the first page of Google for the keyword “Lynchburg Wedding Photographer”. But because of our move, I needed it to start ranking for “Leesburg Wedding Photographer” instead. So the first thing I did was to update my home page SEO title and description to include my new keyword, Leesburg wedding photographer. Then I updated all of my free listings (The Knot, Wedding Wire, etc.) to include my new location as well. I also updated the address for my Google My Business account to reflect the new area I would be serving.
2. Shoot at Popular Locations in Your New Area
As soon as we moved, I started setting up sessions at some of the most popular locations in Northern Virginia, like Great Falls Park, Morven Park, and Washington DC. I then blogged the sessions, shared them on social media, used geotags and hashtags on Instagram, and tagged my clients/models so they could reshare my posts and get my work seen by their friends and family.
If you have the opportunity to visit your new location before moving, or if you’re relocating somewhere that is only 1-2 hours away, planning a trip and shooting sessions there is a fabulous idea! This will give your blog posts time to be indexed by Google and hopefully start receiving organic leads as soon as you move. Also, make sure to update your location in your Instagram bio. You can even type in “Relocating to [Location] in May”. This is huge, especially if you take action in step #3 below!
3. Create Vendor Relationships
Researching vendors in your new area and following them on Instagram is another step you don’t want to miss. If you want to take it one step further, send them DMs and emails to introduce yourself. One of the things I did as soon as I moved to Northern Virginia was to connect with a few wedding venues right away because I knew that, typically, engaged couples search for a venue first, then a wedding photographer. I started looking up local vendors on social media and spent time engaging with them on Instagram. I followed, liked, and commented on their posts for about a week. After a week, I sent them an email and offered to connect and do something that would benefit them. If you’re curious to see the email I sent them, you can get my wedding vendors email template here.
These are the three main things you can start doing right now to relocate your photography business to a new location. Which tip are you going to start working on first?