taking care of business

Folks, I need to chat about wedding photography…and I hope this doesn’t come out as whiny.
A few years ago I was about ready to give up wedding photography completely. I had a terrible (terrible) wedding experience that left me feeling like I was unable (or unwilling?) to deal with rowdy hectic weddings. After that wedding (which was at the end of the season) I made the decision to not advertise for the next season and see what would happen. So last summer I took it easy with weddings, only taking ones that felt right. Suddenly, after doing some amazing weddings for people that appreciated my work (and not just a price point), I had new passion for the industry and was excited to do more.
Of course, fall/winter of 2012 happened (if you are unaware of my goings on of fall/winter 2012, read about it HERE). For that reason, I didn’t advertise, and even turned away work, which was foolish…but there you go.
This all leads up to now…
I really want to be doing more wedding photography, but I am completely stumped as to how to get the word out about my business. I have seen the way some other photographers advertise on facebook with contests and specials. This does not speak to me at all. I would feel like I was selling out if I gave out deals like “Book TODAY and get 25% off your wedding!”
So how does one advertise in a classy way? I tried google ads, paid facebook ads (none of which seemed to yield anything). I hand out business cards whenever I can. In the end though, advertising for myself feels SO uncomfortable. Despite my clients being over the top happy with their pictures and vowing to tell everyone about me, the word of mouth aspect doesn’t seem to travel very far.
What do you think? What get’s you to share someones photography? What kind of advertising would grab your attention?

I just want to take pictures. The end.

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