Even in the digital age, the world of photography is still booming, meaning that there’s more demand than ever before for skilled freelance photographers. If you have been looking for a freelance photography job but aren’t having any luck, you might want to consider starting your own freelance photography business. Whether you’re just getting started or are an experienced shooter looking to expand your reach, this guide will help you get your business up and running quickly and easily. Follow these tips and you’ll be taking photos of your first client in no time!
1. Get Professional Photography Equipment
Now that you’ve decided to start your own photography business, it’s time to make sure you have all of your essential gear. You may need to buy some items (like lighting or cameras) outright, while others (like tripods) can be rented. Whatever you decide, it’s good to get your equipment before embarking on a shoot.
Keep in mind that it can take days for delivery if you order online and could leave you without essential items on short notice. The same holds if you want to hire pros for any parts of your photoshoot. They likely already have what they need, so renting might not even need to be an option in that situation.
2. Make a Website
To take your freelance photography business from a full-time hobby to a full-time gig, you need to have a website. If you don’t have one already, it’s time to create one yourself. With a basic website introducing yourself, showing your work, and offering your services, you’ll start pulling in clients in no time.
3. Learn Professional Photo Editing Software
Editing your photos is an essential part of starting a photography business. If you want to get more customers, you’ll need to be able to give them high-quality images that will impress potential clients. You don’t always need expensive software or Photoshop experience, though it helps.
There are several professional photo editing tools available at reasonable prices that you can learn in just a few hours. With these tools, you can edit your photos easily and quickly so you’re not working forever to produce one picture. It’s best to start with one tool and get comfortable with it before trying another one. No matter what tool you use there are fundamental editing skills that are universal across all programs.
4. Understand Your Target Market
Becoming a freelance photographer starts with understanding your target market. You don’t have to become an expert in everything your customers want, but if you can identify trends in what they purchase and how they spend their money, you will better understand what they need. It’s also important to realize that one of your primary goals as a freelance photographer is to market yourself.
In addition, it’s smart to engage with potential clients as much as possible and to learn how to write a photography contract to give to them when they hire you. This will give your future clients more of an opportunity to learn about you and get a feel for how professional you are.
5. Join Professional Organizations
To grow your business, you’ll need to reach out to other like-minded professionals. Joining photography organizations like Professional Photographers of America (PPA) or the American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP) is a great way to make connections and learn new skills. Be sure to keep an eye on these groups as well; networking opportunities are often announced through group email lists and social media channels.
6. Start an Email List
Having a mailing list allows you to contact clients easily, alert them to new work, and build a community around your freelance business. An email list also gives potential clients a taste of what you do without having to see it first-hand or hire you for a job. It’s free to sign up for an email service like MailChimp, but it’s worth noting that if your list becomes large, they will charge you a small fee per month. If you think you can grow an extensive list over time, then it might be worth exploring professional mailing list services further.
7. Grow Your Social Media Presence
Growing a social media presence is arguably one of the most important things to do when you’re just starting as a freelancer. You’ll need to develop a social media presence so people know who you are and trust your services. Not only will your website need to be up and running, but you’ll want active accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Google Plus—wherever your audience is.
Start your business off on the right foot and stay successful in the years to come with the right tips to become a freelance photographer. With this geode in mind, you’ll be able to focus on what matters most while boosting your odds of success—clients!