Google’s MyBusiness listings are without a doubt, the best free marketing real-estate on the internet.
I won’t bore you with a whole lot of random statistics, but I will tell you the numbers I came across when researching this post made my head spin…
More and more people are looking to Local Results in the search engines to make their buying decisions, and if you do business locally and you’re not there, it’s costing you.
The good news for you is, most photographers aren’t there yet, so there’s a huge opportunity for those prepared to do the work.
So even if you’ve already set up a Google Local or Google My Business or Google Places listing/page in the past, you should probably run through this Action Plan anyway, just to make sure you’ve got it right.
The short version is, this is quite possibly the best free marketing opportunity on the internet!
And that’s not something that I like to admit.
Anyone who knows me will tell you I’m not a big fan of Google… but even I have to admit, a Google My Business listing is something every photographer should set up.
It doesn’t even matter what field you’re in. If you shoot for local customers… weddings, sports, family portraits, corporate gigs… anything at all, a good MyBusiness listing will get you more leads and sales.
Even if you don’t do much local assignment work, a good MyBusiness listing is still extremely valuable for getting your website ranking higher…
Which will result in more visitor traffic… generating more leads and sales.
When a search engine user looks for a product or service that Google deems to be ‘local’, they automatically insert a set of Business Listings that are more prominent on the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
The listings are positioned above the organic results and are often more visible than the paid advertising listings. Verified business are also marked on a Map at the top of the SERPs, creating an additional valuable marketing channel.
When a searcher clicks on any of the businesses in the map, the layout changes and even more listings are shown…
And even better: when someone clicks on your Map Pin, your complete detailed business listing will pop out onto the page.
It’s like someone was there on the spot, noticed their interest and handed them your brochure!
You can see from the screenshot above, this gives you the opportunity to create a powerful marketing piece for your business.
This is huge… you don’t get too many free options these days, especially from Google… so it makes a lot of sense to invest an hour or so making sure this is fully set up and working for you.
While more photographers are starting to make use of these listings, my experience so far is most still don’t bother and of those that do, most of them still only do the bare minimum. So there is an enormous opportunity here for any photographer prepared to take a little time and do this right.
It really is quite easy to do, so I’d encourage you to run through the short ‘Action Plan’ below to set up an optimised and professional Google My Business listing for your photography business.
First up you have to add your your business details to Google and make sure you’re listing is full optimised for the search engine and properly customised for your target audience. There’s a few little tricks here that will seriously improve your ranking, so check it out, even if you’ve already set this up.
This something we originally planned to do just for our Member Photographers, but the results have been so impressive that we’ve decided to share it with our newsletter subscribers as well. There’s a bit of grunt-work involved to do it yourself… but so worth it… or else we’ve got a very affordable offer where we can do all the heavy lifting for you
This is optional, but since you have the page set up already and you know a good ranking will generate visitor traffic to this page as well as your website, you don’t want it to look like it’s abandoned. Here’s a couple of simple options for publishing new material to your Google+ page, including one that is totally hands-free!
Again I’ve got to stress that it’s not often you’ll find such valuable online marketing real estate available anywhere, especially not for free.
The fact that it’s Google is making it available is even more amazing… they usually prefer businesses to spend a fortune on paid ad listings… so my suspicious nature makes me think it won’t be so freely available forever.
So make sure you grab your business listing NOW and get it set up FAST, while you can… and while so many other photographers are lagging behind.
This is quite literally money in the bank for ANY photographer looking for local photography jobs, so make sure you get your share!
OK, this it for now.
I hope you found this guide useful. If you did, please pay it forward and share this page with your photographer friends and colleagues on your preferred social media sites.
As you work through the Action Plan above start to see some results, please share your comments, feedback and suggestions below!
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