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Branding Versus Keywording For Photographers


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#1 lock

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 11:52 PM

Hello SEO experts,
 

What should a photographer do?
 

If a photographer can nail their niche market with a 100% accurate keyworded website name, should the photographer continue with personal name branding or use the nich market keyworded website?
 

For example:
 

A photographer captured a very high caliber portfolio of dolphin images and acquired dolphinphotography.com.
 

He would like to focus on this niche as his primary market. Should that photographer continue to present his portfolio from johndoephotography.com or should he use dolphinphotography.com?
 

Which is more important for a photographer:
 

1. Top search engine rankings for your niche market.

or

2. 100% name brand driven.

 


Thank you for your consideration.



#2 torka

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 11:50 AM

Given Google's recent Exact Match Domain update, I'd be leery of focusing my efforts on the keyworded domain. In fact, it's at least possible you might have a better chance of getting to the top these days without a keyworded domain.

 

I would also be concerned about having to start all over again building up a site from scratch every time the photographer decides to "focus" on a different subject. :) Sure, right now he's all about dolphin pictures, but artists evolve over time. Let's say in a few years he gets totally jazzed about flowers, or wombats or fireworks. Now all of a sudden dolphinphotography.com is no longer relevant to his entire body of work and he's got to start a new keyworded domain for wombatpictures.com.

 

When you put your effort into building the photographer's own personal brand, those sorts of issues don't come up. You're automatically promoting any sort of photography he does, no matter how his artistry "develops" over time (I know, I know, I'll stop now... ;) )

 

Plus, your personal brand is yours and yours alone. You're never part of a crowd when you're branding yourself. It's like: do you want to be one of a bunch of nature photographers (maybe among the top five, but still part of a group) or the one-and-only Ansel Adams? I know which I'd choose...

 

I'm curious as to why you think it's an either/or choice between having top rankings in a niche market (or two or three) and building up a brand name. The two are not mutually exclusive. You haven't fallen into the trap of thinking that a keyworded domain is a magical ticket to the top, have you?

 

--Torka :propeller:


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#3 lock

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 01:50 PM

Hi Vintage Babe,

 

Thank you for your comments.

 

This isn't a case of magical thinking. The scenario makes me wonder which avenue would be best to follow. This photographer lives in a small place where making a living as a photographer would only work if he becomes a generalist which he doesn't want to become.

 

His goal is to "perfect" a narrow portfolio and sell these fine art photography prints to a global market.  He has spent several years building up this specific portfolio without publicly displaying the images.  It does seem to be a very high quality work.

 

Given his determination to produce one specific category of images for this one goal, I wondered if it was a good idea to consider this approach. Would it not stand to reason to improve exposure for selling a specific product globally to have that keyword site in use?  For example, to sell funky widgets would using funkywidgets.com not be the best idea?

 

I have posted this question to other forums and the answer is basically the same as yours.

 

The common opinions I have taken away from this scenario so far are:

1. A photograper is selling themselves therefore the need to brand self not product.

2. If a photographer wants to use the keyword domain, then it should possibly be a blog and link back to his portfolio site.

3. If a photographer uses a keyword domain, it seems as if the photographer is trying to "cheat" in a sense, to get to the top.

 

Any other thoughts?

 

Thank you.



#4 torka

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 11:20 AM

A painting by Rembrandt is going to sell for a higher price than an equally beautiful painting by an unknown artist. Not because it's necessarily a "better" painting, but because it's by Rembrandt. I'm sure there are thousands of perfectly gorgeous photos taken every year in Denali National Park. Honestly, I think it would be hard to take a bad picture there. But very few (if any) of them would sell for as much as an original Ansel Adams print. Not because the others are inferior pictures, but because the Ansel Adams was taken by, well, Ansel Adams.

 

So, yes, in a sense the photographer does need to market himself as a top-tier photographic artist, at least as much as he needs to promote the individual, specific photos. At least, if he wants to maximize his earnings from photography, that is.

 

If the photographer wants to create a blog, I'd say do it on his own domain. There's no real reason for putting the blog on another domain, IMO.

 

--Torka :propeller:



#5 Jill

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 11:40 AM

I concur with all that Torka has said. She's right on the money.  :cowgirl:



#6 torka

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 01:41 PM

:dancer: :blush:

 

--Torka :propeller:



#7 AMphotography

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 06:18 PM

Hello

I too am a photographer who "lives in a small place" who wants to "sell fine art photography...to a global market" and who has "has spent several years building up this...very high quality work...without publicly displaying the images", HOWEVER, I have virtually no experience in internet marketing and had just "fallen into the trap of thinking that a keyworded domain is a magical ticket to the top".

 

I had done some keyword research and came up with (what I thought was) a good domain name because it contained a highly searched term applicable to people are interested in purchasing fine art photography. The idea behind this was that the domain name may get a good ranking and when visitors went there, they would learn about me and my work for sale.

 

So now I feel I have walked into (another) dead end...

 

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

 

Alan
 

 



#8 Jill

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 07:06 PM

AMphotography you just have to do everything you'd do if you were simply using the name of your company as your domain name. Make a great site that provides lots of what your visitors want, and get the word out about it through varied online and offline means.






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