Photography Startup Checklist | 5 Things You Should Know Before Starting A Photography Business
Photography Startup Checklist | Thanks to the price drop and the equipment becoming more user-friendly than ever before, starting a photography business is ridiculously easy nowadays. So easy, in fact, that many amateurs jump the gun and announce the launch of their business before actually taking the time to map out their way to success. At the end of the day, taking stunning pictures will take you only so far! This is exactly why we’ve all seen many photographers give up and close down their businesses after struggling to make ends meet for months.
To help you avoid some of the deadliest and most common pitfalls you’re more than likely to stumble upon during the startup stage, we gathered the most effective tips, tricks, and best practices that will help your business not only survive, but thrive. From business positioning to some of the most affordable marketing tactics you can start using from the get-go, we cover it all, so sit back, relax, and read on!
The Planning Stage: Positioning | Photography Startup Checklist
Any successful entrepreneur will tell you that in order to turn your business idea into a success story, you’ll need to write it down. By not only writing down your idea, but coming up with a solid plan, you’ll have a guide that will help you navigate through the startup stage. This detailed document will help you get a better idea of how you’re going to handle your finances, which clients you’re going to target and what you need to do in order to stand out from the crowd of amateurs photographers in your area.
The Building Stage: Branding | Photography Startup Checklist
If you want to turn your idea into a profitable business, you’ll need to find a way to stand out and secure those potential gigs. One of the best way to do that is to build a solid brand for your photography business. Of course, you’ll want to start with the name of your business. Many photographers actually use their own name for their business, but it’s not unusual for a photographer to come up with a unique name. Either way you choose to go, you’ll also need a logo.
While the logo will play the second fiddle to your work, it will still be the face of your business, so make sure you’re not using a generic template that’s being used by countless other business owners in your area. Your logo needs to be able to stand out, grab your potential client’s attention, and communicate the nature of your brand. Keep your target audience in mind while designing your logo, as different logos will appeal to different demographics.
The Bragging Stage: Designing Your Website | Photography Startup Checklist
In this day and age, everything is online, and your business should definitely not be an exception. Your potential clients are searching the web and researching photographers in your niche and your particular area, so if you don’t have a professionally designed website to showcase the best examples of your work, you’re missing a vital business opportunity. In addition to a simple design that lets your carefully chosen works take the center stage, you’ll also want to include the most important contact details on each page so your potential clients can reach out to you the moment they decide they’re ready to hire you!
The Outreach Stage: Marketing Your Services | Photography Startup Checklist
Just because you built a website, it doesn’t mean you can sit back and wait for the phone to start ringing off the hook! Your ability to market the services you’re providing will affect the overall success of your business. So, to help your website to stand out among all the other photography websites out there, you’ll need to figure out a way to handle search engine optimization. If you feel like the task would be too much for you to tackle so early on, consider investing in a monthly contract with a reputable SEO agency.
You’ll also want to build a strong social media presence, which will involve a lot more than simply setting up profiles on different social media networks and letting them sit idly. It’s called social media presence for a reason – you need to find a way to engage your target audience and become a part of the ongoing conversation. Share tips your potential clients might find useful, anecdotes or funny situations behind the camera, and examples of your work – this will not only keep you on top of your potential clients’ minds, but it will also help you build a reputation of a reliable expert in your industry.
The Growth Stage: Customer Service | Photography Startup Checklist
Photography is one of those industries that thrive on word of mouth marketing, and there’s practically nothing as powerful as a satisfied customer singing you praises. However, in order to have your clients refer you to their friends and family, you’ll want to make sure that you never lose sight of the services you’re providing – don’t put the profits before the service; instead, keep working on it and improving it. And to get the most out of your past clients, offer them an incentive for each new client they bring in. It doesn’t have to break your budget – find something you can offer a a reward that has high perceived value but doesn’t cost you too much, like a free print or a discount on the next session!