Here at Wonderful Machine, we understand the importance of face-to-face meetings with potential clients. Not only do we visit various cities to promote our photographers monthly, but we also offer marketing services to photographers who may need assistance sorting out lists, or simply don’t have the time to do so. When Michael Darter requested I set up Client Introductions to make the most of his trip to San Francisco, I was happy to do the job.
After a conversation to discuss Michael’s specialties and goals, I understood that I would be reaching out to sports, active lifestyle, and landscape magazines as well as advertising agencies with these types of accounts. He sent over a short list of target prospects (typically, photographers will send us about 5-10 companies that they would love to work with.) At that point, I had everything I needed to dive into research and build a more comprehensive list of about fifty prospects in the San Francisco area.
There were a few things to consider when compiling Michael’s list. What is he currently shooting and who is he currently shooting it for? What does he want to be shooting and who does he want to be shooting it for? He sent me a sample print mailer too (below). Not only was this great because I love snail mail, but it was also another way for me to get a better sense of his brand.
I used Agency Access as a jumping-off point. By cross-referencing my results with our Wonderful Machine contacts and other resources like Agency Compile, I was able to dig deeper into my search. I wanted to have a strong sense of who were the big players in the region, who we already had relationships with, and who would be a great fit for Michael’s work.
After I felt confident in the list I built, next up was crafting the personalized email. We find the most valuable follow up call or email gets right to the point and provides a call to action… let’s schedule a meeting! Here is the message I sent out:
Hope you’re well! I wanted to see if you had a couple minutes free next week to meet with our Los Angeles-based sports and landscape photographer Michael Darter. He will be in San Francisco next week Monday-Wednesday (11/4-11/6) and would love to drop by to introduce himself and show you some of his recent work. If you’re interested, please let me know what day and time works best for a quick meeting!
You can view Michael’s work here: www.michaeldarter.com
I’ve kept things short and sweet with a question that requires a definitive response, rather than something more open-ended that could be left hanging. I was able to land two meetings that fell within the window of time Michael had available. One meeting was with an advertising agency that has several sports accounts and the other was with a travel magazine that fit well with Michael’s landscape photography.
After our success in San Francisco, we worked on the same process, but targeted his hometown of Los Angeles. I was on board to help him out with this process and we landed one additional meeting with a great ad agency that would take place after he returned home from San Francisco.
In the end, one can never underestimate the power of letting us do the dirty work and the inherent validation that comes with someone else calling on your behalf.
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