Photography Business 101 | Running A Photography Business On-The-Go, Like A Pro
Photography Business 101 | Congratulations on starting your photography business! It’s fun to realize that photography can also be an effective way to earn a little extra money on the side. Unfortunately, we have seen dozens and dozens of photographers start out with all the excitement in the world, but soon fail as a pro photographer. These tips on how to start a photography business are great for the amateur photographers researching business opportunities, part-time photographers looking to grow their business, or a veteran pro who has to revisit planning and marketing.
A photography career can be truly fulfilling. It is a joy to work with new people, capturing lifelong memories with them, and looking forward to new ones as their babies and children grow. But as you step into the business realm, it is incredibly important to be thoughtful and realistic about the road ahead. Professional photography is highly competitive, but there are a number of steps small business owners can take to stand out from the crowd.
It’s Not Just Creative, Business Sense Is Needed | Photography Business 101
It doesn’t matter what type of business you are trying to build, you have to start with a plan. Business goals can be general. For example, you may want to work 40 hours a week in photography (replace a full-time job), or build a group of pregnant moms whose families you can photograph from maternity through seniors. By setting up goals and tasks that you can actually achieve, it’s easier to find a way to make your business more successful. It also gives you something to strive for each month.
Choose Your Ideal Client | Photography Business 101
Choosing a niche of photography to specialize in is one way of standing out in a saturated market. Starting photographers often feel they have to take on any business that comes their way. Choosing an ideal client up front gives 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. Once you are known for your skills and talent, it can be reflected in your charges.
Beef Up Your Portfolio | Photography Business 101
Being able to present concrete examples of your work is vital for landing new clients. Potential clients will always want to see proof of your skills, so they can be sure they will be getting their money’s worth. This does not have to be a showcase of all of your work, but potential clients will want to see what your work looks like before they hire you. Many photographers take photos of friends or family in the beginning to build up a portfolio. If you create a website portfolio, there is an easy way for people to see you work and the next step is to start marketing your new company.
Market Or Die | Photography Business 101
Does this sound familiar? You start something up. A blog. A website. A business. You’re sure you have a winning idea, and that it will be wildly successful. And then, nothing happens. As well as being an expert photographer you’ll have to learn all about search engine optimization and social networking to promote your services. If you find it hard to do it all yourself, then investing in a monthly contract with a reputable SEO agency will definitely be worth your while.
Back Up Twice | Photography Business 101
The most important lesson that we can’t stress enough is to have backups of everything; back up cameras, back up lenses, back up computers, back up images, back up memory cards, back up everything. Because while you may never need any of them, the one time you don’t have a backup camera, your shutter will lock up and you will have just cost a bride and groom their images. Keep one hard drive on location and another at home or at your studio. Hard drives fail – protect your files.
Know It All Or Hire Those That Do | Photography Business 101
Bookkeeping. Production work. Paperwork. Taxes. There are so many things that you have to do as a business owner. The sooner you realize that you’re going to need to become good at a LOT of different things, the sooner you can start improving at them all. Great photography skills are important, don’t get us wrong. But you need to have a LOT of other ones if you’re going to make a business out of it!