Creativity, passion, and determination are just the foundation of your dream empire’s building. To keep the profits rolling in, an entrepreneur must always learn. This ongoing process of learning more about their work and the trends in the industry will give them an edge over their competitors. If you’re one of the creative minds with knowledge and experience up your sleeves in the photography industry, you must be thinking about creating a unique platform for taking your level up.
This 101 article will smoothly transition your mindset and thinking process from a beginner to a professional photography entrepreneur. We’ve carefully curated the opinions of top brains in the industry to bring the best tips for you.
Stages and Tips For Aspiring Photography Entrepreneurs
Just uploading your finally edited pictures on a website isn’t enough to get your business started. There are two stages of starting a photography business:
Before actually doing anything about your passion for photography, sit down with a hot beverage of your choice and get started with the planning process.
#2 Make Your Business Plan
No matter how organized your thoughts are, they are still random until you pen them down on a paper. Written information makes it helpful for you to describe your thoughts while creating a roadmap for your business and its profits. Your business plan must always include details about:
- Cash flow
Even a beginner knows as well as a professional that there are many competitors in the photography industry. Photographers who make a decent living out of their job are great business people with the required skills. The credit for their success (no matter its proportion) goes to their meticulous planning. If you need some help with your business plan, find some templates online, and work on them.
Shaun Stenning who is successful business entrepreneur, says that making a proper business plan is crucial to any form of business. So if you want to be a photography entrepreneur, you should spend most of your time perfecting your business plan.
#3 – Know Your Personal Finances
Before thinking or doing anything, you must know that any kind of business takes time to get on its feet. In the first few months or years, you must have sufficient personal finances to pay your bills. Many people around the world work part-time at another job to earn the money required for making their ends meet as their business starts generating enough money to pay the regular bills.
#4 – Cost Assessment
Assessing the cost of your photography startup or business gives you a fair amount required for your daily operations. Make a list in which you mention the extreme essentials that are required for running your business in the first stage. A photographer requires a camera as a piece of basic equipment for running their business. These cameras can range anywhere from $10,000 to millions. Additionally, you will need insurance, a website, business licenses (as required), and some software for account management.
#5 – Professional Experience
Start building and updating your portfolio if you haven’t already. Your prospective customers need the experience to speak for your skills before they decide on buying your services. For this, work along with a professional photographer as an assistant to learn more about their work and how they do it.
If you learn well during this experience period, but forget to create a portfolio of updated and trending pictures of your genre, your business will have nothing to show for its work. Keep learning about the types of pictures loved by your audience and include them in your portfolio immediately.
#6 – Execution
Now that a major portion of your work is done in the planning stage, it’s time to work on the icing of the cake – Execution.
#7 – Pricing Plan
Photographers who are just starting in the business world are highly confused by the concept of pricing. They must patiently sit down to think about how much effort is required to work for an hour. Not just that, you must also consider that for one hour of shooting, you will require nearly three hours of editing. There is no fixed structure in the industry to judge your work. So it’s important to create your own structure for your company’s business plan.
#8 – Camera Gear
As per top experts, even a beginner in the industry must always have 2 high quality (HD) lenses, Lightroom and Photoshop for editing images, and two flashes. If you’re wondering why 2 units of each are considered, it’s because a backup plan is required for emergencies. Your lens can break even if it was bought just yesterday. On the other hand, you can also invest in a used gear which could cost approximately $5,000. However, it is wiser to invest a minimum of $10,000 for the first gear. You must keep on upgrading your collection as you move on.
Professionals believe that photographers must play their strengths and avoid their weaknesses when they are starting as entrepreneurs. If you’re good at editing but bad at website development for your company, hire a freelancer to do it for competitive prices without compromising the quality and reputation of your work.