Nowadays, photography is a booming industry. It’s easy to find a photography business today. Regardless if a client is living in the middle of a busy city or in a slow-paced town, for sure, there will be a photography business that fits their needs and budget. Clients might even be overwhelmed by the number of options to choose from.
This status quo might be very beneficial for clients, but if you’re someone who’s planning to start a photography business, this can be bad news. The number of photography businesses operating today makes it harder for your own to stand out. Fortunately, with the right strategies, your photography business can still become a huge success.
Just like any business, starting a photo business isn’t an easy feat. Aside from the competition, you’ll have to think about the equipment you’ll have to invest in, the location of your store and the marketing campaigns to use. Let the following tips help you start your photography business.
Shot from Moose photo stock
1. Using the right photography equipment can go a long way
You can never start a photography business without a camera. This is the most basic requirement for the job. If you’re a passionate photographer, you might have one already. If you’re starting from scratch and don’t have any camera yet, invest in one.
Pay attention to the following tips when you’re buying a new camera:
- Be prepared to shell out quite a considerable amount of money. Usually, high-quality cameras come in a costly price tag. If you don’t have the budget to buy one, ask friends and family to fund your photography business. Depending on your agreement, you can pay them back once your business starts to earn.
- Do your own research before buying your first camera. Remember that this is your investment, and the camera you buy should be useful to your business. If you have friends or family members who are also fond of photography, ask for recommendations. Don’t settle for a cheap camera thinking that you got yourself a bargain.
- Proper care and maintenance are essential so you can utilize your camera for the longest time possible. Always handle your camera with care, and follow manufacturer’s instructions whenever you’re using it. Once you’re able to earn a steady income, you’ll be able to purchase additional equipment such as lens and flashes.
2. Having a stable internet connection is no longer a luxury but a requirement
If you do have a website, chances are it’s built on WordPress. If you plan on creating a website, that’s our recommendation too. WordPress is a platform that allows you to use plugins for virtually anything, including photo galleries. If you have no money at the beginning of your career, install the free (yet powerful) version of Modula gallery plugin and upgrade your plan as you grow the business later on.
The internet can provide unlimited opportunities for your photography business. You can basically market your services, engage with potential clients and create a brand using the internet. Having a detailed online marketing plan can even become your edge from the competition.
As a budding photographer, you can better utilize the internet by:
- The internet is a goldmine for tools perfect for your photography business. There are tools which can help you edit and improve the quality of your photos. Let these tools become your ally so your photos can easily entice clients.
- Having a profile in different social media accounts can also be very helpful for your photography business. Doing this is a cheap and easy way of reaching out to your target audience and educating them about your business’s existence. Just make sure that you’re able to update your social media accounts as often as possible. A client’s unanswered query on your Instagram account can create a negative brand for your business.
- Search Engine Optimization or SEO should also be on top of your online marketing campaign. If you’re building a website for the first time, be keen on the elements that you’re adding or disregarding. Your website should be SEO-friendly for it to rank higher in the Search Engine Results Pages or SERPs. The higher the rank is, the easier it is for online users to notice your business.
3. Everything about your photography business should be planned
Starting a photography business just for the sake of doing it is a bad way to start a business. Making hasty decisions will never give you the clients or profit that you need. Although it can be time-consuming and tedious, you should always start your photography business with a business plan. This document can give you a 360-degree view of the market trends, how your competitors are doing, and what your target audience’s demands are.
Carefully follow these tips when you’re drafting your business plan:
- Always provide proof for the claims you make in your business plan. If you say that your services will take the market by storm next year, support this claim with facts. If you say your management team is fully qualified to operate different facets of your business, attach their resume and credentials to demonstrate that they are indeed the right persons for the job.
- If you see your photography business grow in the coming years, work with a strong management team. No matter how passionate you are with photography, this business isn’t a one-man show. You can’t function as a business owner and HR officer and provide the same quality of outputs. Micromanaging doesn’t work well in businesses.
- Having goals for your photography business is important but going overboard can also have adverse effects on your business. Only set goals and timelines which are realistic for your business to achieve. Keep in mind that you’re still a newbie and the inadequacy of money and experience can hinder you from reaching certain milestones on time.
Shot from Moose photo stock
4. Your outlook can make or break your chances in succeeding in the market
Being a successful photography business doesn’t come overnight; it’ll take years of determination before you can reach that goal. This notion should be planted in your mind before you enter the business arena. You should be ready to face setbacks and use these as your areas for improvement.
You can create the perfect mindset which can lead your photography business to success by:
- Never disregard the importance of self-development. If you don’t have any experience in handling this kind of business, expose yourself to workshops and create networks with professionals in the field. Learning should never stop especially when you’re running a business.
- Map out your goals, so you’ll know where you’re going as a professional. Determine which goals should you prioritize and which comes next. Starting a business without having any personal goals is like driving in the middle of nowhere – you don’t know where to stop or where you’re going.
- Expect that the road towards business success isn’t straight. It’s full of twists and turns, with a lot of bumps. Instead of steering away from challenges, openly accept all of these. Some of these challenges might seem impossible to conquer, but these can bring lessons which can help you run your photography business better.
Beginnings Are the Hardest
Starting a photography business will require time, effort, and resources from you. Even if you don’t have any money or experience, you’ll likely spend so much time marketing your business and getting clients. The time you pour in your business is a significant investment that shouldn’t go down the drain. If you want your photography business to thrive and grow long-term, make sure that you start off with the right foot.
About the author: Brendan Hufford, he learned everything he knows about the business by putting some skin in the game and starting his own.
Brendan writes often about photo marketing on his blog and on Twitter.
Title image by Moose Photo Stock
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