Like most professional photographers today, Mark Bute is scrambling for jobs. The wedding and portrait specialist from Lancaster, Pa., is seeing his business shrink at an alarming rate, not only because people are asking their friends with DSLRs to do the shooting, but because even willing clients are scared to drop cash during a recession.
Bute recently spent some time at the PhotoPlus Expo in New York City, an annual show for professional photographers, where vendors, service providers and retailers gather to brainstorm about ways to improve their businesses.
“It’s very competitive out there right now,” Bute said from the show floor. “But preserving memories and moments, especially journalistic photography, will always be a necessity.”
For Bute, marketing that sentiment meant partnering with his local photo shop, Ritz Camera, to set up a co-branded Web site where Bute’s customers can view his albums of portraits or formal events and order their own prints directly through the store.