Photography Business Manual | The 5 Secrets To Writing A Successful Business Plan: The Only Start-Up Guide You’ll Ever Need

Photography Business Manual | The 5 Secrets To Writing ...

Photography Business Manual | Starting a photography business really isn’t that complicated, especially today. Generating a stable income and maintaining it, on the other hand, is a completely different story. Photography is a popular profession and hobby right now, and that’s the problem. In the past few years, camera equipment has become more affordable, and as a result, everyone can be a photographer. If you’re really going to succeed in the photography industry, you’re going to need to polish up your professional skills and be ready to compete for every client with other photographers who not only have skills and artistic vision, but an established competitive edge and business know-how.

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Launching a photography business can be very rewarding, both from a personal a financial standpoint. But, like any endeavor, planning, dedication, and customer service are vitally important. The adage that those who fail to plan, plan to fail holds true for any professional photographer setting up a new business. Writing a plan will help you think out what your goals are and identify the strategies that will help you achieve those goals. Here are some tips for writing a business plan that will turn your photography startup into a raving success.

Define Your Target Audience | Photography Business Manual

When working on launching your own photography business, your ideal client might not be the type of people that you have worked with in the past. No, this is your chance to be super critical and detailed about the type of person you want as a client moving forward. Choosing an area of photography to specialize in is also one of the most effective ways of standing out in a saturated niche. Rather than being the jack of all trades and being the photographer that does just about anything, pick a niche market and get real good at it. It’s not a good start if you’re doing weddings but don’t enjoy it. You’ve got to decide what it is that you are going to target based on what you’re going to enjoy doing.

Photography Business Manual | The 5 Secrets To Writing ...

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Tune-Up Your Website | Photography Business Manual

Potential clients will want to see samples of your work, which makes your portfolio a vitally important tool in getting them to hire you. Is your website a full-blown marketing force or simply a showcase of beautiful pictures? It can be so much more, especially when optimized for search engines! Search engine optimization for photographers shouldn’t be taken lightly. If you aren’t using at the very least the most basic SEO strategies, then you’re selling yourself short. You want clients and potential clients who are looking for your service or product to find YOU, so make sure you make it easy for them by optimizing every page and page element of your website for search engines.

Set Business Goals | Photography Business Manual

Photography is one of the most competitive industries out there. You have to be a very good business person to make a decent living, and you’ll get there much more quickly if you start out right. Setting goals is important to success, as it keeps your business moving forward and growing. Decide where you want your business to be in the future, then make and meet the goals it takes to get there. By clearly defining business goals you will find a clear path to your destination, like breadcrumbs to follow down the road.

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Photography Business Manual | The 5 Secrets To Writing ...

Come Up With A Pricing Plan | Photography Business Manual

How much will you charge for your services? It’s a difficult question for every photographer, particularly when you’re just starting out. If your photography is your occupation, then you have to treat it like a job, not a hobby. It’s so easy to fall into the trap of money in, money out, or using your personal bank account instead of a business account. Do lots of researching to make sure your fees are competitive, fair and reasonable, but make sure they’re high enough to cover all the surprise costs that may come up. Keep in mind that for every hour you spend shooting, you’ll spend about three hours editing, so you’ll have to include that into your pricing as well.

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Create A Marketing Plan | Photography Business Manual

Some business owners start to break a sweat the moment they even hear the words “marketing plan.” There’s no need to get tripped up on terminology, it doesn’t have to be a very serious or formal document. However it is good to put together a list of current and future marketing tactics that go beyond posting on Facebook every now-and-again, or running an ad for 3 months on an industry related blog. A solid marketing plan keeps you in a proactive mode. You’ll be ready well in advance for family sessions in the fall, the summer wedding season or Christmas holiday sessions. Avoid scrambling to put together packages and discounts after the season is already upon you.

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