Taking photos is only a small part of running a photography business. I mention this because I occasionally get asked for advice by people considering photography as a career or small business.
- Photo editing
- Sales & marketing
- Planning & scheduling
You’ll see from this list that much of running a photography business is not about photography but being a business-person.
Photo editing can often take longer than actually taking photos. Most of my editing work involves adjustments to lighting, cropping, clarity and removing the odd unwanted distraction.
Sales and marketing involve everything from keeping a website updated (including a blog!), maintaining social media, taking customer enquiries, consultations, site visits, pricing, business cards and other marketing materials, photo printing, burning DVDs, packaging, postage and order tracking.
You’ll also need to be organised – checklists and procedures are a necessary part of running an efficient business and keeping customers happy
Photography isn’t a 9-5 Monday to Friday occupation either. You’ll frequently find yourself working evenings and weekends. I do a lot of private events and stage photography – typically out-of-hours work.
When I was first starting out I did a lot of research in to being self employed and running a photography business. Of all the material I read this article by Ken Rockwell stood out. Anyone considering starting their own photography business (or any business come to that) needs to do their research and have a good idea of what you need to do to succeed and what investments are required – financially and functionally.