So you own a photo booth. Maybe you get a respectable number of clients and customers but are looking to up that number. Or perhaps you’re struggling even to get enough clients to make ends meet. No matter which position you find yourself in, you’re not alone. Photo booths are a fun and rewarding way to earn money, but they do present unique challenges. There are many pitfalls to avoid, and if you aren’t careful, you may be dipping your toes into one of these holes without even realizing it.

Not to worry. Just as there are several ways to endanger your photo booth business, so too are there numerous ways to get it back on track. If you’re looking to get your photo booth business back in the fast lane, then we want to help. Here are our top tips for increasing your number of photo booth clients.

Offer Referral Benefits to Past Customers

The first step to any photo booth marketing plan should be to make use of any past clients. These individuals are natural marketers for you, and they may already be doing this work without you knowing about it. If they had a positive experience with you, the odds are good that next time someone they know is looking for a photo booth, they’ll say, “Hey, you know who you should check out?” If this process is already happening, why not take the next step and make it official?

Initiate an official referral program that creates a direct chain of cause and effect between customers, referrals, repeat customers and higher numbers of new customers. There are many ways you might set up a program like this, but here is one model you could follow.

Make it a policy that every time a past client refers a new customer, they receive a discount on their next photo booth experience. That discount can be whatever you deem appropriate — half off, 20 percent off — any amount that makes sense for your photo booth business plan.

This plan is beneficial for two reasons. Firstly, it helps bring back customers as repeat clients, which increases the likelihood that you will become fixed in their minds as their photo booth of choice. Secondly, this brings in new first-time clients, who may then refer their friends, and so on. Will you sacrifice a small amount of profit for offering discounts for referrals? Yes, but this is far outweighed by the benefit of attracting so many new customers.

Once you’ve set this new plan into motion, it’s crucial that you make your customers aware of it. Showcase it on your website and social media page, multiple times and in prominent places where it will be impossible to miss. When you meet with your customers in person, remind them verbally. Anytime you’re out on a booking, pass out fliers that have all the necessary information on them. The simple fact is that people love discounts. If you make it known that you’re offering one, the results are sure to follow.

Improve Your Website and Social Media Presence

This tip essentially boils down to one basic idea — make yourself easy to find. In this internet age, people can find anything they want at the click of a button. Most likely, anyone in need of a photo booth today is going to head to a search engine first. This means that you need to make sure that your name is among the first results that appear.

1. The Website

This starts with building a stunning website. Think of this website as the headquarters of your online presence — your business card, advertisement and store all rolled into one. This is where people will come to contact you, to learn more about your policies and services and to hear past testimonials. Your job is to make sure all of this is immediately available and easily accessible.

Minimalism is your best bet when it comes to designing a website. Don’t be tempted to add fancy bells and whistles and instead, keep things simple. Choose plain backgrounds, easy-to-read-fonts and avoid large blocks of text. Place links to your social media at the bottom or top of every page, and don’t bury important information beneath layers of clicks. Above all, place everything in its logical place. Test this by asking a friend who’s never seen your website before to click around and see if they think everything is where it should be.

2. Social Media

There is nearly an endless list of social media platforms you could join, but few of us have time for all of them. Instead, narrow down the ones that are worthwhile. Facebook and Twitter are must-haves for any business, and Instagram is an excellent idea as well, especially given the fact that this is a platform that’s designed specifically to showcase photos. Beyond these, it’s up to you to decide which ones are worth it. Other platforms to consider include YouTube, Pinterest, Snapchat and more.

Once you join these social media platforms, your job is to be an active source of fun, timely and relevant content, featuring your spin on topics of interest to your audience. This means perhaps commenting on news that’s relevant to your industry and customers. It’s an opportunity to link back to your website and blog, if you have one. It involves posting deals, discounts and promos as you’re running them. Essentially, this is a platform for you to connect with your audience and sell yourself as a reliable, fun and trustworthy photo booth service that’s a great choice to hire for someone’s next event.

Besides this, social media is a great place for your customers to connect with you and ask questions, or to leave comments telling you what a great time they had with your booth. These are both things which help boost your credibility and will go miles towards earning you new customers.

Get Testimonials From Past Clients

Have you had even one customer who enjoyed their experience with you? Then there’s the perfect opportunity for a testimonial.

1. How to Get Testimonials

Try sending your clients a survey to fill out after they’ve completed their experience with you, asking them to rate their experience and being sure to leave a field for comments. This comments field is especially crucial, as this is where you can get some great quotes to use.

You might also email, call or contact your past customers directly. Explain that you’re trying to get some testimonials and ask them if they’d be willing to share a quote. There’s no need to say anything fancy here — most people will understand the importance of testimonials and, provided they had a good experience with you, most will be happy to help. Simply be polite, explain what you’re after and ask if they’d be willing to give you a quote. If they are, terrific. If they aren’t, be courteous, thank them for their time and try someone else.

2. Where to Put Testimonials

Testimonials are one of your best marketing tools. In every single piece of your photo booth advertising campaign, there’s a place for some good old-fashioned testimonials. Your website, of course, is the number one place where these will come in handy. Make an entire page on your website dedicated to testimonials, clearly label it and place your quotes there. Additionally, you might put one or two tastefully throughout the rest of the website — perhaps at the bottom of the page, or as a pull-quote.

Social media is another excellent place to advertise some of these glowing testimonials. Maybe this means taking a quote in part or in its entirety and posting it to social media. It could mean linking back to your social media post. However you choose to do this, make sure you’re spreading these types of positive reviews across your social channels, letting people know that you aren’t all talk. You also deliver exceptional results, and people are willing to back you up on that.

Grow Your Network

Networking is an invaluable tool, the importance of which cannot be overstated. It can’t entirely replace advertising, marketing and a strong online presence, as these will always be crucial to your success, but networking still has a critical role to play in your photo booth business growth.

In case you’re unfamiliar with the term, networking is the practice of creating, growing and maintaining personal connections in your industry of choice. This means fellow photo booth owners, photo booths supply companies, frequent patrons of the industry, major local clients and more. Even though some of you may be competitors, and thus playing for different teams, as it were, you’re all involved in the same game, and it’s important to connect with one another.

1. Why Network?

Networking is one of those practices that may feel a bit pointless at the time but will come in handy when you least expect it. Maybe you need a certain supply, and a supplier you connected with months ago is willing to offer you a discount because of your personal connection. Or maybe one of your competitors had to cancel a booking, but has a good relationship with you and so recommended your services to the client instead.

In other words, what goes around comes around. Establish good working relationships with those in your industry, and you never know the ways this might circle back to you.

2. Where to Network?

One of the best ways to network is to volunteer. This may not connect you with competitors, but it will connect you with potential corporate clients. If there’s a charity event going on near you, volunteer your photo booth for free. This gains you exposure with innumerable new potential clients.

Other great ways to network include visiting trade shows, conferences and other industry events. You never know who you’ll meet here, or when those relationships will come in handy for all parties involved.

Offer Auxiliary Services

Every photo booth out there offers the same basic services. The booth itself, maybe some fun props to hold and a photo strip that prints out afterward. These are all elementary services and are standard across the industry. If this is all you have to offer, then your services represent the bare minimum of what a photo booth can be.

To rise above this status, you might want to take time to step back and ask yourself — what else can you offer? How can you set yourself apart by going beyond what ordinary photos booths offer? There is a whole world of ideas out there, but a few of the ones in demand right now that are worth considering include:

  • GIFs: GIFs are all the rage these days, and there is plenty of technology out there that makes this a viable option for photo booths. From three to four frame GIFs to short, boomerang-style GIFs, this is a great extra feature to add to your photo booth services.
  • Green screen: Let your client’s guests see themselves in a whole new world. This isn’t new technology, and it’s so simple that there’s no reason not to offer it.
  • Custom props and backdrops: Clients like customizable photo booths, and they love to see their logo reflected in the photos themselves. Why not make this an option for your next upgrade?
  • Slow-motion video: Everything is a little more dramatic and outrageous when captured in slow-motion video. Because this feature is so much fun, it might just gain you a few extra customers.
  • Dubsmash karaoke booth: Dubsmash is a recent craze and by investing in it, you set yourself up as someone who’s on top of current trends. Let your customers sing and lip-sync to popular songs, or even create the option for your clients to host competitions.
  • Virtual reality: This strays a bit from the basic photo booth service, but there’s enough overlap that this is another natural place you might take your work. Invest in some virtual reality (VR) equipment and let clients rent it for events. With the recent interest in VR, this is sure to be a popular choice.

There is no limit to the places you can take your photo booth or the services you can expand to.

There’s nothing wrong with offering basic services, and you should continue to do so. But if you’re looking to stand out from every other photo booth service out there, it might be time to think about how you can step up your game.

Take Your Business Management Solutions to the Next Level

With all these new incoming customers you’re sure to acquire if you implement these methods, you’ll need improved solutions to manage them. For this, there’s no better solution than Táve. Táve is a one-stop software app that helps you manage the business side of your operations, giving you more time to focus on building your client list and delivering a one-of-a-kind photo booth experience to them.

From workflow management to online booking, Táve can do it all. And best of all? You can try Táve for 30 days free. Sign up for your 30-day trial today, free of charge, and experience the difference only Táve can offer.