HOW TO SUPPORT SMALL BUSINESSES FOR FREE
I actually get this question a lot or at least some form of it. Mostly from my friends and followers from all over the world who see my work and vision as a photographer and want to know how they can help support me. The most common is, “If only you were local, I would book a photography session with you in a heartbeat…” And YES I get it, my business is local and requires meeting and sharing space so I can’t book every friend that loves what I’m doing. But you know what? They can and still do support me!
OF COURSE, THE MAIN WAY TO SUPPORT A LOCAL photographer OR BUSINESS IS BY PURCHASING THEIR WORK OR BOOKING A SESSION.
But a lot of times we aren't in the season of life or finances that we can purchase from every small business we love. We can try when the need arises but a lot of the time we just want to give our support and show them we have their back. These 7 ways are for YOU! These are free, simple, and take about 2 seconds out of your day to show the small business, artist, friend, or peer that inspires you that you SEE them and you are supporting them.
I also get these questions from fellow photographers, sometimes they want to support what I’m doing but most of the time they just want to know how they can leverage their widespread support into an actually helpful business advantage.
I AM ALL ABOUT COMMUNITY OVER COMPETITION AND SUPPORTING THE PEOPLE OUT THERE TRYING TO MAKE THEIR OWN PATH AND BUSINESS. I REALLY DO WANT TO BUILD UP OTHER PHOTOGRAPHERS I LOVE AND SHARE ALL MY FAVORITE ARTISTS AND SMALL BUSINESSES WITH THE FAMILIES WHO FOLLOW ME!
There is room in this world for all of us, so when I can I support local and small
But as Facebook and Instagram keeps changing to make it almost impossible for small businesses to survive without paying a lot of money to them for advertisement. It’s a love-hate relationship we are all in and truthfully the only REAL thing that keeps small businesses afloat online are people actively showing support and interest.
So that’s where your support comes in!
1. Write them a Review!
IDEALLY, IF YOU’VE WORKED WITH THEM BEFORE OR KNOW THEM PERSONALLY AND CAN VOUCH THAT THEY ARE TRUSTWORTHY TO WORK WITH!
Reviews really do make such a difference for any business and it’s often hard for small businesses to ask for thoughtful feedback and kind words. So when you have some free time or a moment to spare, leave an honest and uplifting review on a favorite artist’s page or small business.
YOU CAN LEAVE A REVIEW ON FACEBOOK or GOOGLE
2. FOLLOW THEM
Social media is an ever-growing part of the business! And having a community of followers who support you both personally and professionally can really make a huge difference! And it can always end up benefitting you too! You can see when they announce specials or deals first which can lead to allowing you to support them even more regularly!
RECENTLY I’VE BEEN LOOKING AT SO MANY LITTLE SHOPS THAT SELL ORGANIC BABY CLOTHES. AND WHILE I USUALLY CAN’T PURCHASE FROM ALL OF THEM, I DO MY BEST TO ALWAYS FOLLOW THEM SO I CAN STAY CONNECTED. IT’S JUST MY SMALL WAY OF SHOWING MY SUPPORT TO THAT ARTIST TRYING TO MAKE THEIR SMALL BUSINESS WORK!
A few places to make sure you are following your favorite small businesses!
Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Email List, Pinterest
3. Share their Posts!
So I’m sure you are already following them, but did you know that most posts that Small Businesses share don’t even get seen by 5% of their followers? The algorithm only shows you what it “thinks” you want to see. So if you want to see more from an artist or just want to show a small business some love, do them a favor and SHARE their posts and blogs on your own page.
4. Talk about them
Yes just talk about them! Tell a friend about your favorite boutique or birth photographer. Share a picture of that new dress you bought and make sure everyone knows who the designer was! As crazy technological as things are becoming, when it comes to being a small business we are still very much in the “word of mouth” world! We trust it, when our friends talk about small business!
yOU NEVER KNOW WHAT YOUR FRIEND IS LOOKING TO PURCHASE ON ANY GIVEN DAY!
Some of my best clients have come directly from my close friends just telling them about what I do! They hear “I’m looking for a birth, family, motherhood photographer?” and jump to share my work with them! And that word of mouth makes a HUGE difference in how I’ve stayed grounded even in this technological age.
5. Comment on their posts
The more you comment the more that tells Social Media that what this small business or photographer is sharing is WORTH showing more people. So write, “that’s beautiful” or answer the questions they ask, they will be so honored just to know you see them and support them enough to engage!
6. Leave a special note on their Blog
Did you know that when you leave a comment on a Blog, it boosts that small business’s SEO? Now what is SEO? Well, it’s basically the term we use for how often we get searched for on google. When you search for “Fort Worth Birth Photographer” you only see a hand full of photographers when I promise you there are hundreds of us. The SEO is the ranking at which we get listed as a small business so the more you comment and support someone’s website or blog the higher and more likely they will get searched when someone IS looking to book them.
BEING AN ARTIST IS SO HARD BUT THE HIGHER THEY LIST ON GOOGLE THE MORE LIKELY THEY ARE TO BE HIRED, SO YOU CAN HELP SO MUCH JUST BY WRITING A QUICK COMMENT ON THEIR BLOG!
7. Just message them some encouragement
Last but not least, just tell them you support them! That you are proud of them or you love their work! I can’t tell you how great it feels just to hear from a friend that they SEE me and are loving the art I’m creating.