Expert Startup Tips | Launching A Photography Business? 6 Things You Should Know
Expert Startup Tips | Making the decision to become a professional photographer is the easy part. So easy, in fact, that nothing whatsoever prevents anyone with a camera and at least one eye from considering professional photography as a career choice. It’s fun to realize that a photography hobby can also be a great way to earn a little extra money on the side. Unfortunately, we have all seen dozens and dozens of photographers start out with all the dedication in the world, but eventually fail as professional photographers.
Photographer is one of those professional titles that many people want. And why not? It’s fun. However, reality isn’t so glamorous. In recent years, professional photographers have had to face a declining industry as well as an nation-wide slowdown. If you’re thinking about becoming a professional photographer, this is what you have to know to turn your startup into a success.
Choose A Specialization | Expert Startup Tips
Starting photographers often believe they have to take on any business that comes their way. Choosing an ideal client up front enables you the comfort and confidence to turn away the client who is too far away from your location, can’t afford you, or is simply a pain to work with. Choosing an area of photography to specialize in is one way of standing out in a crowded market, and once you are known for your expertise, it can also be reflected in your rates.
Invest In The Right Equipment | Expert Startup Tips
A bad workman may blame his tools, but a good photographer knows that the right quality equipment can make a big difference to his results. This will be your most important investment, and it pays to buy the best you can afford. Wedding and portrait photographers often need studio lighting and/or portable strobes and lightweight cameras. Architectural photographers usually require larger-format cameras that have the ability to tilt/shift the lens plane, while sports photographers work with cameras that have a fast frame-rate and the ability to use long focal length lenses with wide apertures. Do your research and work out how to use your budget to get the most useful equipment.
Building A Portfolio Builds Credibility | Expert Startup Tips
To charge a professional fee for your photography, you will have to be able to reassure potential clients that you have the skill and experience to deliver the job. To do this it’s vital that you have a professional-looking portfolio, weighted towards your area of specialization. In other professions, people use their resumes to apply for potential jobs. However, as a photographer, your portfolio will act as the resume and will showcase the breadth of your work.
Marketing | Expert Startup Tips
Even without a large budget, a startup photography business must market itself. A website and business cards are the most basic marketing materials for the startup photography business. As well as being an expert photographer you’ll have to learn all about search engine optimization and social networking to market your services. Social media is a powerful promotion tool, but it’s best to start out with one or two networks and use them consistently. Facebook is a great option, but you might want to lean towards one of the more visual social media channels like Instagram.
Set Business Goals | Expert Startup Tips
Any serious business owner will tell you that you have to organize your thoughts on paper. This detailed document serves as your roadmap, describing what your business is and how it will be profitable. Starting a business begins with the end. By setting business goals you will find a clear path to your destination, like breadcrumbs to follow later. Photography is one of the most competitive businesses out there. You need to be a very good business person to make a decent living. You’ll get there much more quickly if you start out right.
Make It Legal | Expert Startup Tips
Get your business license. Keep in mind that requirements for getting a business license vary based on local ordinances. Make sure you have a work space and any necessary permits you may need to operate your business in that location. Set up a bank account for your photography business. It’s also not a bad idea to get some insurance. Comprehensive general liability coverage covers bodily injury and property damage for which the photographer is legally liable. Theft and damage coverage and business property content coverage covers the photographer’s photo equipment and home-based office equipment.