Buckle up with me & Chelsea LaVere of Tidewater & Tulle while we go on a journey through the ins and outs of getting published, choosing the right place to get published, and why it can be so important for your business. This is going to be one incredibly informative blog. Make sure you’re cozy, you’ve got your cup of coffee and your notes, and get ready for information overload. I’m super grateful for Chelsea’s expertise in today’s post. She taught me a TON of what I know about SEO, blogging, and getting published.
“The power of online is, without question, the strongest marketing tool you have beyond word of mouth for your small business. Print publications have their own type of prestige and portfolio value due to the limited editorial real estate available in each issue, but they are no longer considered effective modern marketing tools. They are great to show booked clients and establish clout with your fellow professionals, but if you’re looking to generate leads for your business, create a long-lasting digital footprint web of business presence, online is where the majority of your potential clients are.
Online wedding publications are not a flash in the pan; they are a big ole golden nugget of SEO, and I share that from personal experience! When I was a wedding photographer, I booked two weddings from years-old features on wedding blogs — and likely many more, but these were the ones I was given the exact lead trajectory on where my couples came from.
Thanks to blog editors understanding SEO and what it takes to get their content out there, one of my styled shoots published in 2013 (seen here on Burnett’s Boards) was two years old when my bride discovered it via Pinterest while searching for her wedding venue. And the second, another couple of mine found me via Swooned and then, of course, had their wedding feature on there.
Why Tidewater & Tulle?
My experience as a wedding pro is what fueled my passion to getting Tidewater and Tulle to be the #1 wedding blog in Virginia in just a year’s time. To give a region a national spotlight so that the talent from our area could be seen locally and on a bigger level can be everything when it comes to putting food on the table on a small business owner’s table.
Because Virginia Beach, Williamsburg, and the Outer Banks are top wedding destinations, couples outside of Hampton Roads need to be able to find local wedding professionals in the city they are tying the knot, and they are doing so by ways of Google and Pinterest. With limited circulation and traditionally smaller print run, print publications can only reach a finite amount of local people. With online, it’s literally infinite once those fingertips hit the keyboard if you’re submitting to an intentionally SEO-driven publication.
How to tell the difference if your online feature will last the test of time? Consider these top 6 tips:
Check to see if the publication has changed the filenames to meaty SEO phrases.
Things like “tan-neutral-colored-bridesmaid-dresses.jpg” and “nautical-wedding-norfolk-virginia.jpg” are key to image searches and Google. (You can right click on an image and “open image in a new tab” to see the direct link. This will show you to what the publication has renamed a file.)
Look at the publication’s Instagram and how they are using hashtags.
If they aren’t using relevant and powerful hashtags, their content is not being broadcasted very far and will fade into the distance faster than you can say #. All online publications must have a consistent social media strategy plan to be a blip on Google’s radar. These social media pings are everything to Google and give the publication a boost in searches.
Look at the publication’s Pinterest page and their pin descriptions.
While frequent pinning is a plus, it’s really the descriptions that can help you determine if the publication is doing everything it can to be a good searchable resource to their online audience. Descriptions that mimic natural search patterns like “bridal headpiece for natural hair” or “red bridal lips” are powerful.
Look at how the publication has customized their feature URLs.
For real weddings, a great URL includes a geographical reference and some descriptors (e.g., rustic lace wedding).
Look at the publication’s engagement on social media.
Are there likes? Comments? Shares? Google loves seeing everyday people engage with publications on social media. It gives the publications clout when becoming a trustworthy source of information and therefore Google gives them search engine high fives over other similar publications who aren’t getting the same engagement.
Check out a publication’s write up of features.
There’s a reason why it might seem like some sound like broken records! “Why are they describing the colors and flowers in the wedding when I can see it for my own eyes?!” Well, beyond the preferences of writing styles, it’s geared for the Almighty Google’s reading pleasure that sees these crafted paragraphs as search gold! So the next time you see “the bride held a wildly foraged bouquet of eucalyptus, pink garden roses, and blue thistle” in your future, give a little fist pump and cheer because “eucalyptus bouquet” might just be the trigger phrase someone is googling somewhere.”
I’m fortunate to have photographers that trust me to get their events and styled shoots published, so why not you? The importance of getting published goes so far beyond the clout of saying that you were. Getting published is a great way for you to show your current clients, potential clients, and peers your incredible work. I’m lucky to work with Two Bright Lights and can help you find the best fit! It goes so far beyond that, as it’s beneficial for everyone involved, not just the photographer or the planner. In-bound and out-bound links to your site are just one more way to add in SEO goodness to Google. This also adds another way for potential clients to find you, which only benefits your business..,,
It’s not always as simple as having someone just submit a wedding for you – did you shoot epic details? Is there a story that the pictures only partially tell that will make for an even better feature? I’ll pull out your favorite portraits and find the “pin-able” photos that blogs will love to use for their publication.
About Tidewater & Tulle
Tidewater & Tulle is unique in that it helps target your demographic and has an enormous following in the Hampton Roads/Richmond/Outer Banks area and beyond. It is perfect for wedding vendors who are want a more curated following, while still expanding their reach. They have a fantastic wedding vendor guide, amazing resources for their vendors, and focus on all of these details. Chelsea has dedicated a large portion of her life over the past few years to perfecting how it runs. They are part of Aisle Society, a fantastic cumulation and resource of the best blogs and wedding inspiration worldwide. Aisle Society allows your feature to go far beyond Virginia and it’s surrounding areas.
If you’re interested in learning more about how Misty Saves the Day can help you, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org!