Starting To Make Money With Photography? Here Are 5 Life-Saving Tips to Know
Are you just starting to make money with your photography skills?
Congratulations! It’s an exciting journey, but there are a few crucial pointers you’ll want to keep in mind to ensure your success.
These tips will not only help you navigate the dynamic world of professional photography and set you on the path to success but also elevate your photography business to new heights.
Securing a contract
Contracts may not be the most exhilarating aspect of your photography journey, but they’re your ultimate shield, regardless of your client – whether it’s a close friend, a family member, or a beloved former teacher.
It’s imperative to lay out all your expectations in written form, as photography’s biggest challenge often lies in differing expectations. That way, if anything comes up, both parties have a signed document clearly outlining what the expectations were. By establishing clear expectations from the beginning and adhering to them throughout the project, you can ensure that your business can move in the right direction.
If you don’t have a contract handy, consider downloading a template, customize it to your liking, and consult with a legal expert to ensure it aligns with your needs – do whatever you need to draft up a document you’ll be using for new clients and projects.
Setting the right price
While advocating the initial path of working for free to gain a foothold in the industry has its benefits, underpricing your services is a pitfall many budding photographers inadvertently stumble into. As a new photographer, the thrill of landing a gig may overshadow the critical assessment of your worth. Remember, your fee encompasses not only your photographic skills but also the use of your equipment, fuel, time to get to the shooting place, taking the time out of your day, and post-production work with editing software that also costs money. Simply put, every element has value.
Hence, when you begin charging for your craft, establish a rate that reflects these investments. Don’t be afraid to propose figures that might initially appear ambitious – you’ll be surprised how often clients accept them. Take time to meticulously calculate your worth, considering all aspects, to ensure you’re fairly compensated for your talents.
The power of checklists
Imagine you’re tasked with photographing a wedding: you’ve got your contract in place, pricing sorted, and the shoot date approaches. It’s highly advisable to request a checklist from your client detailing their requirements, as this checklist serves as your guiding compass throughout the event, ensuring you capture everything according to the client’s expectations. If, for any reason, the client fails to provide an item on the list, you can’t be held accountable – it wasn’t specified in the checklist!
Photographers, much like gamblers in a round of blackjack, explore a multitude of angles and options for hitting the jackpot of that one perfect shot. However, if you’re just starting, don’t expect work to come knocking on your door. Setting up a website, creating business cards-custom pvc cards are more appealing, a personal blog and some social media accounts is most certainly not going to be enough to attract new clients.
You need to actively market yourself and your work. Be prepared to showcase your skills, always carry your gear, and take advantage of unexpected moments, like a casual family gathering, to capture captivating shots. These instances can lead to valuable referrals and job prospects, but you must actively seek them out rather than waiting for the phone to ring.
In an era dominated by digital communication, the personal touch of in-person meetings remains unmatched. When engaging with potential clients, remember that you are not only offering your photography but also yourself as a product. Showcase your charm, passion, and enthusiasm for your craft. These qualities resonate deeply with clients and can be the tipping point in their decision-making process.
Choose a comfortable place, like a coffee shop, to meet with prospective clients and discuss your work. Even covering the cost of their coffee can go a long way in building a valuable positive first impression and securing future projects. Personal meetings are a huge advantage and you might be surprised what benefits can be brought by leveraging this opportunity.