If you're a photographer who has decided to take the plunge into running your own wedding photography business from home, then you are not alone. In fact, this type of business is growing in popularity as skilled photographers, whether they are professionals or simply love to take photos to spur their creativity, discover that starting their own business is within their grasp. However, there are a number of pitfalls that you need to avoid as you start your own business, and most of them can be avoided by writing out a business plan. Planning ahead and preparation will help you feel more confident about starting your business and will allow you to create a checklist so that you can consider every aspect of your company, its needs, and how you plan to run it in the long term. Here are a few tips how to become a wedding photographer.
Step One: Consider What You Have to Offer
This point is almost as important as your budget, as it will be the basis of your business. Your talent will help get you started, but what can you offer your clients that will make you stand out from other businesses? Can you offer competitive pricing, unique posing ideas, or editing technology that's completely unique? Will you offer your clients a broad range of experience, education, or a mix of both when they ask about your qualifications? This is the step people most often overlook and is one of the main reasons that their small business often fails, as you must understand your own value and skills before you can expect others to want to pay for them.
Step Two: Map Out Your Staffing Needs
Mapping out your staffing needs before you plan your overall budget will help you address how you plan to pay anyone who works for you, what kind of staffing you will need, if any, or, if you plan to work alone, how you will track payments and report your earnings. This phase of your business plan also allows you to work out how and where you can find temporary help for larger gigs when you need it. If your budget will not allow for temporary help, consider offering mentoring and the opportunity of work experience to young photographers who may want to one day start their own businesses.
Step Three: Plan Your Equipment Budget
Many people who look for information on how to become a wedding photographer, start their own wedding photography business without careful planning often find themselves financially overwhelmed at the outset because they underestimated that kind of equipment they would need. While it's not necessary to go into debt in order to buy the fanciest cameras on the market, keep in mind that you will need more than just a few cameras in order to run your business. Tripods, lighting equipment, editing software, and backup storage media should all be included in your equipment budget. You can save money by finding gently-used equipment online, particularly if you take your time to search for the best deals.
Step Four: Map Out an Availability Schedule
You won't make much money if you constantly change your availability hours, so it's important to map out exactly how many hours you're willing to put into your work-at-home wedding photography business, including hours that you will spend editing and uploading photos. Most weddings take place on weekends, so if you want to start a business that will allow you weekends off, this may not be the best venture for you. Planning out your availability will help you gain stability when it comes to working hours, which is especially helpful if you're going to be running the business full time. Working too much or not enough will harm your business, especially at the outset, so this is an important final step before you present your plan to those who might invest in your work-from-home wedding photography business.
Author Bio: Krista Esparza is a full-time wedding photographer with over three years' experience in writing for the Web and to date has written over 2,500 different articles over a wide range of topics, from travel to health care to women's issues. She currently lives in New Mexico with her family and a variety of pets.