Over the years I’ve had the opportunity to try different marketing channels. If your getting into weddings I would not recommend going with sites like The Knot or Wedding wire. For your business you need qualified leads and those sites end up sending you unqualified leads.
Qualified leads include those who are not window shopping but seriously looking to close a deal soon. Those with a reasonable budget and not cheap, and ones with good parameters like location and dates.
Unqualified will include those just windows shopping doing “initial research,” please avoid them you will waste your time. Avoid the cheap people, the want the best photographers to the lowest price possible. These people do not really value photography, they only care that you can show up and do a decent job. They will try to lowball you low as possible. Overtime with my experience I can just read an email and know who is qualified or not. There is no shame in not responding, but please do not send a reply explaining why you won’t take them as your client you might get a bad review.
Paid advertising can be hit or miss. I’ve actually gotten most of my leads from unpaid advertising, it cost you nothing and it is more effective. When you place your unpaid ad in the right place in front of the right people you get qualified leads. You have to keep in mind the demographic Paid ads can work the opposite if your not careful and can end up wasting your money. Referrals are your best source for leads.
You get a happy customer that refers someone they know. Not cost or effort on your part.