10 Tips to Tell You How to Start a Photography Business
==== ====For great photography tips, CHECK THIS OUT!http://tinyurl.com/89lvljn==== ====Sooner or later, most photography enthusiast give some thought to "how to start a photographybusiness." Unfortunately, there are a few challenges that "doom" us to failure. One of thebiggest challenges that we bring is our failure to make the distinctions between our love ofphotography (re: our enjoyment and passion for photography) and the business of photography(understanding buying and spending habits of people that are photography customers).For example, many of us think that because our photography work is "so good," that we shouldnthave that much trouble selling it. We, sometimes, mistakenly, think that great art andphotography "sells itself." Big mistake! Great photography does not sell itself. In the businessworld, nothing sells itself - nothing! Knowing this is critical to start a photography business.Our failure to make the distinction between our passion for photography and our desire to be inthe photo business is also evident in how we try to tell people about what we do. For example,photography customers dont care what type of equipment we use. They dont care how manymega-pixels we have, nor how much our equipment cost us, nor what brand of camera we use.Photography customers (current and potential) want to know that we can, and will, produce thehighest quality photography work for them.Think about it, the mechanics that repair our cars dont tell us what tools that they use. The chefsin the restaurants that we patronize dont tell us what type of pots, pans or stoves that they use.In those businesses, it is already established what customers want and how best to give it tothem. In other words, other businesses do a better job of understanding their niche. In order tostart a photography business that is consistently successful and growing, we must be clear onwhat niche we are offering and how to sell the benefits of our niche to the customers.Another mistake that we budding photography business owners repeat is failing to "specialize"(know our photography niche) in what we do. As photography enthusiasts, we enjoy shooting anyand everything. As photographers, thats just fine. However, when we start a photographybusiness, we, mistakenly, try to be all things to all people - we take every photography joboffered us.One of the obvious problems with this approach is our failure to recognize how it drasticallycheapens the value of what we do as skilled photographers, in the eyes of the customers.Mistakenly, we want our customers (current and potential) to know that we can photographanything - after all, were very versatile photographers! What the customers actually see is thatwere not "versatile photographers," were just someone with a camera thats available to takepictures when they call us. Serious photography customers (re: those that can afford to spendregularly) want to do business with specialists - photographers that know their photography niche.
Successful wedding photographers are clear on this, as an example of my point. Their primarycustomer (usually the bride) has dreamed about her wedding day for most of her life. She isntlooking for a vesatile photographer. She wants a "wedding photographer" that can make her lookas good, happy and beautiful as she has been in all of her lifelong dreams of her day - herwedding day. Theres a special skill to this type of photography service. In fact, this niche hasmore to do with well developed people skills, in my opinion. Successful wedding photographersthat are clear on these nuances are more successful in business.Do your research.Inventory Your Photo Collection - Take a look at your photo collections. Determine what it is thatyou 1.) shoot the most; 2.) shoot consistently well; and 3.) enjoy shooting. Identify your andcategorize the photos into various niches, i.e. portraits, sports, glamor, pets, children, landscape,etc.Research The Photography Markets - Do internet searches using the words "photography niche."Also, use the type of niche that you think your photos fit. For example, "event photography niche,""wedding photography niche," etc. Also, a good source to help identify some of the photomarkets is "The Photographers Market." This is a book that is published annually and claims toprovide photo buying contacts and information. Online searches are the most useful, in myopinion. Books by author and photographer, Dan Heller are good places to get a betterunderstanding of the vast world of photography, without all the artsy-hype, in my opinion. He alsohas a very informative website - DanHeller.comIdentify Real Markets - Find out what type of photography (of your specialties) your customerscurrently are purchasing. What type of photography is selling? At some point, youll have tobalance the realities of the different niches. There can be some factors that arent consistentacross all photography niches. For example, some niches require longer "workflow" (workflow isthe post production process of taking photos) periods and tasks than others. Higher qualityportraits normally require photo editing - which is time-consuming. Event photography requiresthe processing, packaging and delivering (presenting) of photos. True story: I went through mylarge photo collections and found that I had a very large number of outstandingly beautifulflowers. I cant begin to tell you my disappointment when I found out that there is virtually nomarket of photos of flowers - it seems that everybody has them already, everybody! Lessonlearned - identify real markets.Ten Tips To Assist You To Identify Your Niche
Identify specialties that fit your style: Determine if you have the necessary equipment for the niche Do you have identifiable and specific skills in this niche area - can you articulate them? Who is your target audience What type of photography do they purchase the most Where are they taking their photography business currently - your competition What will be different about your services Does where you live support your preferable niche Is your niche stock photography or assignment photography - do you know the difference What is the future potential and tendencies of your nicheFortunately, the internet makes this information just a few clicks away. The information isntdifficult to find and learn. Knowing your niche increases your confidence tremendously. Trulyknow your niche - and your photography business will follow!Kalem Aquil is a semi-burnt-out photographer that dispenses free, unsolicited (yet, very goodand accurate) tips and advice to budding photographers that want to take their photographybusiness to the next level. He dispenses such advice to budding photographers such as "where tostart," "what to charge," "how to know if youre really, really ready," etc. etc. etc. He dispenses hisfree and unsolicited advice here. Subscribe to his free ezine, the "Best Amateur Photography TipsDigest," and receive a Bonus Special Report - "How To Build Your Own Successful PhotographyWebsite." Click here to subscribe.
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