7 easy steps to marketing and advertising your photo booth rental company
So, you’ve started your photo booth rental company and now you want the world to know. Find out how to get the word out, beat the competition and stay on top with our 7 easy steps to marketing your photo booth rental company.
Let’s start by saying congratulations! You’ve knuckled down and set up your own business, that’s no mean feat. You’ve done your research and know that the photo booth industry is a lucrative one with plenty of revenue to be made.
There’s also a ton of competition locally including some leading companies that have been running for years. The question is, how do you get your company to be successful and generate a steady flow of regular bookings? Read on to find out with our 7 easy marketing steps for your photo booth rental company to find out how.
1. It all starts with a website -
Before you can market your business, you need something to market
If you haven’t already got a website set up yet, now is the time. Maybe you want to really invest in your site and have some money in the budget. That buys you a website designer that will deliver professional results. You can find website designers on Upwork or find an agency on Clutch. If funds are running low, it doesn’t mean you can’t have a great looking website, just head to the cheaper CMS website design alternatives such as Wix or Weebly to design your own. You can also design a photo booth rental website for free with WordPress.
Your site needs to clearly communicate who you are with an about page, the services you sell and transparent pricing. If you’re looking to attract corporate and nonprofit events as well as life celebrations and social events, you’ll need to present yourself as a company that caters to both. That means a sleek, formal but fun site that is more visuals and less text. Design is very important.
Have a look at the design for Orion Photo Booths' website. Its high-quality video auto playing in the background shows customers using the photo booths at various events, demonstrating the product in use and the quality of the photos. It has clear navigational buttons to take you straight where you want to go. Nice looking, easy to navigate and a simple way to make a booking and notable clients / reviews section to help gain trust from new visitors.
Once you have your site, get some of your friends to try it out and give you their honest feedback. Get their feedback - they could help you spot some issues before your potential clients do. Ask them which design they prefer - yours or your competitors.
Lastly, install Google Analytics, the free and most popular web analytics package. With this tool you can have a look at the way users come into your site and what they do once they are there. What content do they find most interesting? What pages are most effective at driving rentals? Spend some time getting to know it and you’ll consider it one of the best marketing tools you have.
Here’s Monster Insights’ beginner’s guide to Google Analytics to get your started.
a. Get your site mobile optimized
It's also really important to ensure your site is mobile optimized. You’ve probably heard the term before, but if you’re new to all of this you might not know what it means. Mobile optimization is when the experience visitors have on your mobile site is the best possible for their device. An experience that is smooth, fast and adapted to the mobile screen. Did you know that a majority of people abandon sites if they take more than 3 seconds to load? And with a majority of people now using mobile phones to browse and purchase from sites, these considerations are really important. In fact, since 2015, Google adapted its ranking algorithm to rank mobile-friendly (mobile optimized) pages higher (we cover this more in the SEO section below), so even more reason to do it.
b. Google My Business
Check out one of the starter blocks for getting your new company known online: Google My Business. Pretty much all businesses have one, even startups. Why? Because it is essential in marketing your company as it’s the first stop for information on your business, providing all the necessary contact details as well as reviews, photos, and your location. Essentially, it puts you on the Google map.
Below is the knowledge panel on the right for FriendWithA. It’s usually found on the right-hand side of the Google results.
Here’s a useful step by step video on how to get Google My Business set up for a nice summary.
Now that your site is listed on Google, get it listed on other sites as well. Yelp, white and yellow pages, BBB, the chamber, business directories, FB, Instagram, FriendWithA and many more. See this great article 21 Web Directories that still have value.
c. Make your site SEO friendly
This is a long-term strategy (6 months - 2 years) but done right, could pay off big dividends. In order to rank well in Google and get your company name high up on the search engine results pages, you’ll need to optimize your site. But what does SEO mean and how can you apply it to your new website? SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is a method of making sure a website can be found in search engines by using words (keywords) and phrases used by people who are searching for the product/service you provide. For example, if you are writing a blog post about photo booths, you’ll want to find the keywords (most searched for words relating to the topic) you want to use (via Google AdWords - more on that later) and write them naturally within the content so that it ranks well in Google.
SEO seems to be a term that both mystifies and alienates many business owners who end up hiring agencies to optimize their pages for them. But with a bit of work on onpage and offpage SEO, you can tick some SEO basics on your website yourself.
For a visual explanation of SEO, here’s a really cool comic book strip from multi-disciplined digital agency Redevolution.
Start off by being sure to include your keywords in your headings and have alt tags for your images. Invest time in a blog with well researched and informative content, concentrating on relevant topics to your business. Great blog posts can drive traffic to your site, traffic that can potentially be converted to sales.
For example, if you are a photo booth rental company in Chicago, then that is going to a keyword that you want to rank for. Make sure at a bare minimum that you are including these SEO keywords in your home page. Also say you have a mirror photo booth or inflatable photo booth, be sure to include these keywords as well.
Title: Chicago Mirror Photo Booth Rentals from [CompanyXYZ] - The most effective page titles are about 10-70 characters long, including spaces.
Meta Description: Photo Booth Rental Chicago. Inflatable Booth, Mirror Booth for Weddings and [insert your target audience here] - For optimum effectiveness, meta descriptions should be 160-300 characters long.
On page: H1 tag - Photo Booth Rentals in Chicago
So not sure if you have this set up right and not sure what title, meta and h1 tags and descriptions are? Here is a quick easy tip.
1. Download Chrome.
2. Then download a Chrome extension called “SEO Quake”.
3. On Chrome, go to your homepage on your website and run a diagnosis on that page with SEO Quake to make sure it is set up properly. It will analyze 15 different items and give you a pass fail on each item so you know what you are doing right or doing wrong.
Here’s more off-site SEO to get your website generating more hits. This time, we’re talking about backlinks. Backlinks are a trail of links that lead back to your site. The more backlinks, the more reputable Google believes your site to be. You can generate backlinks by becoming a guest writer on a blog or commenting on related blogs. That doesn’t mean you should set about spamming all other photo booth rental sites and social media pages out there- Google’s algorithm is clever and knows spamming when it sees it!
e. Emailing your customers
Emailing your client base, however small, is a useful way to keep your brand relevant to them and interact. Send out relevant information such as discounts, competitions and updates to keep them in the loop.
Okay now that your website is set up properly that is the very basic first step. Now to get your website found and start marketing your photo booth rentals!
2. Your Photo Prints are your free offline advertising
Ever thought that your product actually helps sell your business? High quality photo strips are more than just memories of an event, they are a great advertising tool too. Attendees of one of your bookings will print off the strips and put them in a prominent place at home. They’ll see them often and not only will they think back to that fun event they went to, but they’ll be reminded of your business. That means when a friend, colleague or family member is looking for a photo booth rental, you may be in mind. The photos are even more effective when you include your logo and website on the photo print (in an unobtrusive corner).
During an event booking, tell your clients that online versions of the photo strips are also available on your site. So, even after the event, you’ll have potential future clients heading to your site to check out their photo templates.
Make sure the equipment you purchase is the highest quality your budget allows. High quality images and videos will stand out on your website. Photo strips with excellent clarity and definition will make your client’s experience even more polished and the right kind of off camera lighting can highlight the subjects as professionally as possible. From DSLR cameras for the photo booth flash to ink jet or dye sub printers to produce those quality photo prints, invest in superior quality technology which will see a return. You could always purchase pre used items too.
3. Make it happen on Social Media
Social media, especially Facebook and Instagram are soon to become your business’ best friends. Both offer awesome access to thousands of potential customers through some specific ways to market your business you can learn now.
If you’ve already got a personal Facebook account, utilize your network. You can get your photo booth rental business brand out there through word of mouth and shares in your own network. Also create a business page - place your logo as your profile image so people are always reminded of your brand and fill in all of the possible contact information. Tie your business account to your website too, to generate traffic. Once your business account is set up and ready to go, make a big announcement on FB for your business, then invite your friends to like your business page, join local wedding, photography or business groups. Make some contacts, network and soon you’ll be recommending some of your new networks for business opportunities and enjoying the return business for free.
Instagram is also a great platform for your business. Instagram success is based on the quality of photos, so you already have an unfair advantage as a photography business. You could ask your customers to share their pictures on social media and use a hashtag.
You could even offer prizes to your customers to further incentivize their sharing. This way, your customers will spread the word to their friends, who will keep you at the front of their mind for their next occasion.
4. Head to wedding expos
Credit@Çelik Nimani via Flickr
Pack your bags and head to wedding expos to network, mix with potential new partners and drum up new business. Get those business cards ready and hand them out to fellow business owners such as wedding planners, photographers, caters and DJs.
Credit@Ruthson Zimmerman via Flickr
Dress sharply, have great quality marketing materials and not only will you appeal to the people attending the expo for their own weddings, but to other business owners too.
Note that handing out cards is only the easy part. From all those business cards you collected, now it’s time to network in real life. Offer them something of value and create meaningful connections. Maybe say you’re looking to network with other wedding professionals and buy them a coffee.
No one is going to recommend you to their network after just meeting you in a wedding expo, but if you create meaningful connections with no strings attached, people will be happy to recommend you when someone needs a photo booth rental or has a wedding coming up. It’s not about what you know, it’s about who you know.
5. Ads- Google ads or Facebook ads.
If business is going well and you want to take it to the next level, you can use Google Advertising to reach people currently searching on Google for photo booth rental companies in your area. You will have to pay for the clicks that you generate, but it’s a very effective way to increase your customer base.
Alternatively, you can use Facebook and Instagram advertising, where you can use a variety of formats such as video and images which might be a better way to demonstrate the quality of your service!
6. Listen to a photo booth marketing podcast
Yes, there really is a specific podcast dedicated to this very topic! Aimed at wedding vendors, this business podcast is crammed with great information and advice that could help you market your photo booth rental company, as guided by business and marketing strategist for wedding professionals Heidi Thompson.
Credit@HeidiThompson via Apple
7. Rent your photo booths with FriendWithA
A quick, easy and free way to market your photo booth rental company is to put your photo booths and packages on FriendWithA, a peer to peer rental marketplace where individuals and businesses borrow and rent out their equipment. It’s a potential goldmine for your business as new customers and the current FriendWithA database are all within your reach. FriendWithA is a place for all things rentals and customers come looking for photo booth rentals, cameras, bounce houses and more. Your equipment is fully insured for property and liability and covers you in case of any cancellation. Here’s a few other features as well.
* Beautifully designed site and lets you add up to 30 photo and a custom video to your listing and profile - to make your profile stand out
* Transparent pricing and easy invoicing
* Your equipment 100% insured
* Absolutely free to advertise on FriendWithA and you only pay a small percentage if you have a successful rental through the site
* Only verified users will be able to review you - no fraudulent reviews
* Money back guarantee for both parties
* Easy to use payment and automated scheduling system
Once you’ve uploaded the booth and package options you want, you’ll display as one of the rental options in your area, like below.
Cool! Where do I sign up?
Here’s how you can list your stuff on FriendWithA today.
All in all...
Now you have all the tools you need to market your photo booth rental company; you can go ahead and get started! The reality is, you don’t need much money in the bank to begin marketing your business and many options are even free. So, what are you waiting for? Get inspired and good luck!
Have you had success marketing your photo booths? Tell us what has or has not worked for you!