As The Photo Lab started as a $0 startup with no funding, online marketing was a tricky task to approach initially. The idea was to find more effective and low-cost ways of approaching client acquisition to bridge with some online promotion.
Several different methods were tried and tested throughout the first year. As Google AdWords was initially quite costly, other methods which could target photographers directly were used including Facebook—which essentially become the primary method.
In addition to ads on Facebook, The Photo Lab launched a successful email marketing campaign developed in-house that took a unique approach. After having built an internal database of all photographers in Canada, the campaign launched in April and May with a 20% response rate and 80% open. The campaign was unique in nature, and would also be used again in the future before Canada Anti-Spam legislature was implemented.
Today, The Photo Lab operates on almost no marketing budget and uses word of mouth and established handle in the market to attract new customers. Primarily, this allows time for other projects.