How to Find Websites That Will Share Your Work – Marketing for Photographers
This chapter is an excerpt from the in-depth e-book, Creative Freelance Marketing for Photographers.
One of the best ways to locate websites that will feature your work is to find websites that have featured the work of your competition.
The hard work has been done for you already. You know these websites will be interested in similar content, and there is a good chance they will want to feature you as well.
To research your competitors, the first thing to do is to explore their websites, blogs, and social media pages. Many businesses like to share where they have been featured, so create a master list as you do this. When you come across a new successful creative in your field, put them on a list to study. Then put Google to work; search for the name of the business, and search page by page to see all of the mentions from quality external websites.
Another method is to use backlink checkers, which will allow you to enter the domains of your competitors, and they will provide a list of backlinks to their websites. My favorites are Open Site Explorer, which is owned by Moz.com, Majestic.com, and Ahrefs.com. None of these services offer a complete list of backlinks, but they will show you many of them.
In addition to the list of your competitors to study, create a list of each website that you want to be featured on. Create a list of sites you would like to contact immediately and a list of sites you would like to contact in the future. The second list will consist of sites that you do not believe you are ready to be featured on yet.
Through these strategies, you should have an endless amount of sources to gain press and links. However, there are many other ways to find websites that will feature your work. Make a list of categories to search for on Google that are related to what you do, and search for both local and worldwide websites that might want to feature you. Search for websites that you can write for in addition to ones that might feature your work or services.
This is a highly creative process. The more creative your content, the more opportunity there will be for coverage. Keep a list of ideas about content to create, be aware of what your competitors are doing, and keep your eye out for unique opportunities.
An interesting example of this happened to me in 2012 when, through no fault of my own, my beloved Fuji X100 camera was destroyed by salt water. At the time, the camera was the hottest and most talked about on the market, so I decided to take it apart piece-by-piece, photographing each step of its deconstruction, and creating a blog post about the process. I did not think anything of it except that it would be a fun project.
When the post was complete, it occurred to me that others might have some interest, so I started to email it around. Within a few days, it was being shared on Engadget, Gizmodo, PetaPixel, Daring Fireball, and hundreds of other websites and forums. I received 30,000 visitors within a couple of days.
These links were valuable for search engine purposes, but had I not had a mailing list popup form, most of those people would have just come and gone. Instead, I got many new signups for my mailing list. To this day, this remains as my most viral piece. Here is the article.
For further education, download Creative Freelance Marketing for Photographers.