Your dog grooming portfolio can be the best in the world… But if no one actually looks at it, how useful is it truly? A big part of running your own grooming business is to market yourself. This means, by extension, marketing your portfolio, too.
After all, don’t you want people to see the amazing work you’ve done? A stunning portfolio that demonstrates a wide variety of skills can often be the very thing that turns a prospective client into a paying one!
If you’re brand-new to the world of dog grooming and just starting to get your business off the ground, don’t worry. We got you! Join us as we discuss 5 solid ways to successfully market your portfolio and attract a ton of customers!
Developing Your Dog Grooming Portfolio
First thing’s first: you can’t market your dog grooming portfolio until you actually have a portfolio. So, logically, make sure you start with this step first. Look back on any and all photos that have been taken of your past work. From there, you can select the best ones and get the foundation of your portfolio started.
Don’t have any photos of past work you’ve done? Or maybe the ones you do have aren’t exactly the best quality?
Then take the time to focus on this. Groom your own pooches, see if any of your friends and family would like their dogs pampered, or post around online to check if anyone in your area would be interested in a complimentary grooming service. After every dog you groom, take some flattering photos that best shot off your skills!
(Just remember to get written permission from friends, family, and/or the people you’ve connected with online to use photos of their dog(s) in your portfolio.)
Here are a couple handy resources we recommend checking out, to guide you in the right direction when first developing your dog grooming portfolio:
5 Ways to Market Your Dog Grooming Portfolio
1. Add your dog grooming portfolio to your business website!
If you truly want your dog grooming business to succeed, you’ll need to create a professional website. There’s a lot of valuable info you should include on your site, such as your contact info, available services, information about who you are, service rates, reviews, etc. Moreover, your website is the PERFECT place to showcase and market your portfolio!
Most often, prospective clients will use online search engines to search for dog groomers, especially if they’ve never booked with one before. Once they find your website, they’re going to expect to see examples of past work you’ve done. How else will they get a feel for your skill-set and know if you’re the right groomer for them?
Dog grooming is one of those careers where showing is arguably more important than telling. People need peace of mind that their dog will be in the right hands – and they won’t get this peace of mind through your promises alone. They want – even need – to see it for themselves first.
2. SEO is your best friend!
Search engine optimization (a.k.a. SEO) is critical for marketing both your dog grooming business and portfolio! If you’re unfamiliar with SEO, Google Analytics offers comprehensive – and free – online courses that can teach you a lot on the subject. MOZ also has this incredible 7-part Guide to SEO for Beginners, too.
In terms of SEO, your goal is to make sure that your dog grooming portfolio is searchable. Furthermore, you want your portfolio to rank HIGH on search platforms. This way, when people type in a high-ranking keyword on, let’s say, Google, your portfolio images will be the first to pop up in the results!
So, always ensure to use the right meta descriptions for your photos. And if you’re incorporating a portfolio image onto one of your website’s pages, within a blog article, or even on social media, remember to target the right keyword(s)!
3. Start a dog grooming blog and incorporate your portfolio images within it!
Speaking of blogs, another excellent way to market your dog grooming portfolio is to showcase your work within blog articles. So, why not start your very own blog and include it as part of your business website?
Creating regular, unique content is always a solid way to boost SEO. Every time you publish a new article, you’ll basically be attracting Google and crawler bots back to your site. Moreover, when you add your portfolio images in the articles and give them proper meta descriptions, you’re only increasing your chances of your content being seen.
Another option available to you is to guest write for other people’s dog grooming blogs. As part of your guest posts, you can potentially use your own portfolio images as the photos included within the article. Becoming a guest writer means that your business will be promoted by other websites and companies other than your own. Remember all that talk about SEO? This is another thing that’ll help boost it!
4. Share your dog grooming portfolio on social media!
Unique content shouldn’t only be shared on your blog and website, though. Social media is also a key tool at your disposal! And what better unique content to share than photos of dog grooming work you’ve done?
Do some research and pinpoint which platforms you’d like to maximize. I actually recommend securing your social media handles as soon as you’ve registered your business name, so that no one else can take it. From there, build your pages in a way that aligns with your brand and vision.
When it comes to social media, posting regularly is key! Apps such as Later and Hootsuite can help you schedule your posts in advance. Plus, platforms like Instagram can show you metrics that’ll help you better determine the optimal days/times you should be posting.
Here are few other tips to keep in mind when marketing your dog grooming portfolio on social media:
- Engage with everyone who takes the time to leave a comment on your posts and/or message you privately.
- Give credit wherever credit is due. E.g. if someone else took the photo, give them credit in your post as the image’s photographer. They’ll appreciate that!
- It’s better to be safe than sorry. Always get your client’s permission (preferably in writing) before share a photo of their pet on your social media account(s).
- If you have the budget for it, invest in marketing ads for your website and/or blog articles.
- Don’t over post. If you spam your followers’ feeds with too many posts in a given day, it could put them off and potentially make them unfollow you.
- A harmonious balance between evergreen content and topical content is the key for success.
- Furthermore, all posts should accurately reflect your business’s brand.
- As much as possible, always post 100% original content.
5. Make your dog grooming work shareable.
Public relations is all about maintaining a strong, favorable reputation for your business. Most of your business’s PR will be done through your groomer-client experiences, social media presence, and professional business website. But there are plenty of ways you can use public relations to market your dog grooming portfolio, too!
For example, you can make your work easily shareable. This way, others can easily share and promote your business (with your permission, of course) after they’ve discovered you. Here are a couple ways you can do this on your website:
- Write up an engaging bio for yourself on the ‘About’ section of your site. This will help others know who you are and what you do. Moreover, they’ll be able to pull the right info from your bio when promoting you on their own platform.
- Make sure the portfolio images included on your website are large (but not too large) in size. This way, people can download and share your photos without sacrificing their high quality. If you’re worried about people taking your photos without your knowledge or consent, include a blurb on your portfolio webpage that clearly states that proper credit and a link back to your website are required for anyone who wishes to share your work.
Do YOU have any additional tips to add to this list? Drop them in the comments below and tell us how you’ve successfully marketed your professional dog grooming portfolio!