Starting A Photo Business or Growing A Photo Business – Where’s Your Priority?

I like keeping track of what’s happening online. I use a variety of services like Google Alert to find out what people are talking about and searching for each day. The two most popular questions people have in the photography industry are:

1. How do I start a photography business?

2. What do I name my photography business?

I see these questions every single day in some form or another.

Yet what I don’t see a huge amount of are the questions that follow the first two. Questions like:

  • How do I find enough clients to bring in a full time income?
  • How do I build wealth as a photographer?
  • How do I specialize in a niche and become wildly successful?

So where do people get stuck? Why do they love the idea of starting a photography business, then give up and never follow it through to fruition? While I’ve had a lot of discussions on this recently, and my post last week 12 Stages Of Running A Photography Business touched on some of it as well, there are two things to keep in mind when you start down any new path.

1. Success takes time, and you won’t find success by getting lost in your dreams.
When you begin dreaming about a photography business, it’s a lot of fun. You love taking pictures, you might hate your current job, and it seems like a viable way out of where you are now. You can see yourself living the glamorous life of a photographer – traveling every weekend, photographing celebrities – “insert your dream here”. Dreams are fun. But when you bring in your first client and you make $50, or they complain about the results, it loses its glamour quickly.

The only way to make it a reality is to take one step at a time. “I’ll find one new client this week.” “I’ll create a new wedding package that allows me to charge 20 percent more.” You need to be specific and move forward one day at a time.

2. Quit believing what everyone else tells you, and believe what you want to do.
Remember the pet rock? How could anyone make millions selling a rock as a pet? I can only imagine a group of people sitting around talking and laughing, and one of them saying, “I’m going to sell a rock and make millions”. Can you imagine the laughter? How about the laughter now?

I read comments, articles and reports all the time that say you simply can’t make a great living at photography anymore – there’s too much competition, too many people doing it on the side, not enough skills, etc. There are always excuses. If you believe you can’t you’re right.

But if you believe you can, you can. Anything is possible if you look at something a bit different, and offer it in a new way. If you do the same thing as everyone else, yep, you’ll get the same results. But why not try something new? I talk about new ideas on this blog all the time. Find one that works for you. Tweak it. And run with it.

A year from now you’ll be glad you did.

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