Simple Photography Business Checklist | A Lazy Person’s Guide To Starting A Successful Photography Business
Simple Photography Business Checklist | Starting a photography business sounds like a dream come true, doesn’t it? You can quit that horrendous day job and make a living doing what you actually love doing! However, what many amateur photographers fail to understand is that commercial photography is like any other business in that there are many day-to-day functions for the business to succeed, and majority of them don’t have anything to do with photography. Ready to be a business owner first, and a photographer second?
Just because running a photography business might be slightly more complicated that you originally thought, it doesn’t mean you should throw away your dream of doing photography full-time. It was Bill Gates who said “I choose a lazy person to do a hard job. Because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it.” In other words, you don’t have to work harder. Instead, you should work smarter. In light of that, we gathered some of most important, yet incredibly easy tips for starting a photography business even the laziest of us can follow.
Know Your Craft And Your Tools | Simple Photography Business Checklist
If you’re an absolute beginner, the very first thing you’ll want to do is invest in education. For example, you can attend photography classes or workshops. Since these are usually considerable investments, you’ll want to do your research before jumping in – what niche of photography are you interested in, will the workshop meet your needs, who are the teachers? This is the type of questions you need to answer before signing up!
Another option is finding a mentor – someone who has had a successful career, whose work you admire and is passionate about what they do. Keep in mind that they should be available for at least one hour a month. This might even turn into an internship, with a chance of you becoming the second shooter, which will give you a great opportunity to get the much needed experience.
Set Business Goals | Simple Photography Business Checklist
If you’ve already been working as a part-time photographer or a second shooter and you want to get serious about photography, every successful business owner will tell you that you’ll need to set business goals if you’re hoping to turn your business idea into a success story. These should be achievable, measurable and clearly defined, which will help you track your progress. By writing a business plan and defining your business goals, you’ll have a much better idea what should be done in order to actually survive the startup stage and avoid all the pitfalls that come with it.
Update Your Equipment | Simple Photography Business Checklist
Whether you’ve been shooting professionally for years now, or you’re just starting out, you’ll need to keep in mind that you’ll need to update your equipment on a regular basis. While talent is one of the most important elements of a photography business, it will only take you so far – there’s no denying that the equipment is a major factor as well. Remember that you’ll also need to invest in backup equipment too; the last thing you need is for a camera do give up on you mid-shoot. And lastly, you’ll need editing software and a powerful computer to edit the images before delivering them to your clients.
Ensure You’re Insured | Simple Photography Business Checklist
Photographers’ cars and bags are packed with expensive equipment and thieves know that, which is why you’ll need to make sure you’re insured. However, theft is not the only potential problem – you’ll also want to get liability insurance, so you’re safe in case a client trips on a cable during a shoot. Insurance policies vary from one state to another, so you’ll want to do your research. However, if you don’t feel like doing the heavy lifting on your own, you should consider hiring an insurance agency – many of which already have packages tailored for photographers in particular.
Set Up A Website | Simple Photography Business Checklist
Having a professionally designed website is no longer optional in this day and age! Every potential client is likely to google you before reaching out to you, which means you need an appealing showcase of the best examples of your work. A well-designed website will not only showcase your skills, but will help you leave an impression of a reliable and established industry expert. You don’t need anything complex – a simple portfolio with all the relevant contact details and a blog page is all you need to get your website off the ground.
Build An Online Presence | Simple Photography Business Checklist
Building a website for your photography business is just the first step towards building an online presence. The best, and arguably the cheapest way to build a solid presence is by setting up accounts on social networks your potential clients are using. Why should you bother with Facebook and other networks if you already have a website and a regularly updated blog? Well, because your potential clients are on Facebook each day, and not your website. By getting involved and becoming a part of an ongoing conversation online, you’ll send more potential clients to your website, which will boost your chances of getting hired.
While this is definitely not a complete list of absolutely every step you’ll need to take to turn your business into a raging success, it will get your foot in the door and help you make the first steps. Remember, there will never be a time when you are 100% ready. There will always be something missing. Just start. Today.