10 Tips for Promoting Your Self-published Photo Book

Marianne Stenger
5th June 2018

Whether you want to publish a photo book to generate a passive income, promote your work as a photographer, or tell a specific story, your end goal is always going to be to get your photo book in front of the widest audience possible.

So once you’ve gone through all the hard work of gathering information, taking and editing photos, and designing a photo book that tells a clear story, how can you make sure your work gets seen?

If you’re just getting started, you can follow these five steps for promoting your self-published photo book. On the other hand, if you’ve already covered the basics and would like some specific ideas for engaging with your target audience and promoting your work, here are some things you can try.

1. Create a new landing page

If you have a dedicated photography website, which you really should, you can create a page specifically for your photo book and set it as your landing page. This way, whenever someone new visits your website, the first thing they’ll see and read about is your photo book.

It’s also important to make sure that your website is optimised for mobile users, since these days more than 50 percent of web traffic originates from mobile devices.

2. Go social

Social media may not really be your thing, but if you want to promote your photography and photo book, you must have a strong online presence.

Of course, having a strong online presence doesn’t necessarily mean you have to sign up for every social networking site there is. Start by actively using one or two platforms and building up content and followers. Instagram and Facebook are particularly important for photographers, but there may be others your target audience uses, so it pays to do some research.

3. Encourage interaction

A big part of promoting yourself and your photo book will be engaging with your audience so you can convert all those likes and followers into sales and customers. Start by including an interesting description and call-to-action with each photo you share.

Giving your viewers a bit of context encourages them to interact with you and share your work with others. When you do get comments or someone shares one of your posts, make an effort to respond or at least acknowledge it with a quick “thanks” or like.

4. Add hashtags

Hashtags are used to categorise content on popular social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. Adding the right hashtags when promoting your photography and photo book will help potential customers discover your posts.

Try to be as specific as possible but don’t go overboard by adding too many in one post or crafting overly long and complicated hashtags. If you want to get a feel for what works, take a look at the sort of hashtags other influential or well-established photographers are using.

5. Try guest blogging

Guest blogging is another great way to promote your photo book. Many popular photography websites or blogs run by other photographers accept guest posts on photography-related topics.

With this in mind, if there are photography websites you already enjoy and follow, get in touch with the editor or photographer running it and see if they’d be interested in having you write a blog post about your photography project and the photo book that resulted from it.

6. Give an interview

If you don’t feel confident enough to write your own blog posts for other photography blogs and websites, another option is to offer to share your expertise in the form of an interview.

Many popular photography blogs regularly conduct interviews with photography experts, which can be a great opportunity for you to discuss your photo book or at least mention it and link back to it. Find out which blogs or websites do this sort of thing and then get in touch via email or social media to see if you can set something up.

7. Promote it in your email signature

One quick and easy way to get the word out about your photo book is to mention it in your email signature. This way, every time you send out an email or respond to a query, you will also be spreading the word about your photo book and encouraging people to find out more.

Make sure you include your full name and title, along with a brief mention of your new photo book and a link to the book and your social media profiles.

8. Do a free giveaway

If you already have a good following on social media, you can promote your self-published photo book through a social media giveaway campaign. This might cost you a bit initially, but the engagement and traffic it can generate will definitely make it worth it.

For example, you could encourage your followers to share or comment on a post about your photo book for a chance to win a free one. You could also ask a trivia question related to your photo book or photography project and then award a free book to whoever is the first to answer correctly.

9. Find ways to promote it locally

People love supporting local businesses and artists, so look for ways to promote your photo book locally. This will work particularly well if your photography project and photo book covers a local issue or features photographs that have been taken in and around your city or area.

For example, you could find out if a local art gallery would exhibit some of your photos, and ask local restaurants or cafes if they’d like to display some of your photos with your name below them to generate interest in your work.

10.  Use the online Bob Bookshop

Last but not least, why not take advantage of the Bob Books Bookshop to publish your photo book for free? All you have to do is create your book and order at least one copy through the Bob Books online book creator, app or design service.

Once it’s online, customers will be able to view and purchase your photo book, so it’s not only a great way to share and promote your work as a photographer, but also allows you to start earning money from book sales.