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Start as a professional photographer

When are you a professional photographer? The word professional means that you are a professional and have the skill to deliver high-quality work.
In this article, I mention several points that you can consider when you want to start as a professional photographer. Some points relate to generating (more) income as a photographer and others to gain more knowledge. Both goals will reinforce each other.

Drawing up a business plan as a starting photographer

It is obvious, but it is very important to write your goal on paper and make a photography business plan. What is your goal, and how is your goal achieved? Who is my target audience? In addition, it is good to think about your mission and vision. It doesn't have to be that extensive, with 1 A4 page, you are already further than most entrepreneurs have ever done.

Example of goals:

  • Within three months, there are 200 photos online on my website
  • After six months, there are an average of 500 visitors to my website
  • Every month 250 Euro in income selling online photos
  • Every month at least two photoshoots

Starting a business in professional photography

it is very simple to start your own company. You call the Chamber of Commerce for an appointment. After you have made an appointment, you can get a Chamber of Commerce number. It is useful to fill in a form in advance before making an appointment.
At the Chamber of Commerce, you must state your company name, company form, and activities. When coming up with a company name, it is good to consider that it is easy to remember. In addition, the domain name is still available.
It is also good to enter any SEO words in your domain name when applying for your domain. For example, if you want to focus on professional photography as a photographer.

Marketing

An important factor in a company's success is marketing. Good marketing can lead to more success. You can specifically address a target group through online marketing.

Have a website made for photography services

A website is the calling card of your company. I notice that I often take a look at the website to get an impression of the company. So it is good to pay attention to this. Depending on your goal, you can go in any direction with this. However, the basis must be good. On many websites, I still come across "Welcome to this website". This is one of the many pitfalls that is made when setting up a website.

Show your photos online

Often people immediately think to show your photos via your website. In practice, it is often not kept up to date, or the user-friendliness of the website is not good, that visitors soon click through again. You can also upload your photos very well via platforms such as Flickr or Picasa and place a link here from your website. Or by using a plugin that allows you to show photos from Flickr on your website.
Create a collection of your most beautiful photos and put them online, and make sure that these photos come into the picture. Potential customers need to get curious, and you need to get them in touch.
You can also upload and share photos via social media, but they will soon no longer be visible through the timeline.

Make it personal

Make your website personal. Research has shown that visitors value a personal approach. Tell who you are and how you work, and put a picture of yourself on the website. This will allow visitors to contact more quickly. It is also good to find out what added value you can offer the visitor and list this information.

Active as a photographer on social media

You can increase your awareness through social media. It is wise to route all information you share to 1 main channel (for example, your website). From here, you can have the visitor contact you again. Via Facebook, you can register with groups related to photography. The same goes for Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Instagram, etc. If you want to be found online, it is good to register and be active on these channels.

Car stickers with photography advertising

A simple yet effective way to advertise is to put a sticker on your car. A small sticker on your rear can make road users curious. The labeling does not even have to cost that much money.

Exhibitions / Fairs

Find exhibitions/fairs in your area and have your most beautiful photos enlarged. The bigger, the more impressive. Have your photos printed on aluminum or a photo on MDF. The sublimation technique gives the photos a beautiful shine that makes you stand out immediately.

Participate in photo contests

There are many different online photo contests that you can easily participate in. Sometimes it concerns small prices, but you can still gain fame in the region or province. You can also place photos of won competitions on your website as reference material.

Accountancy

When you start your own business, you also have an obligation to the tax authorities. This often means the following for starting entrepreneurs:
  • VAT return for each quarter
  • Time administration
  • Mileage administration
  • Administration of incoming and outgoing invoices
  • Pay income tax every year
Acumulus is a very suitable program for starting entrepreneurs who do their accounting. It is clear and to the point accounting program that contains all the functionality for a starting entrepreneur. The Exact bookkeeping program is known for somewhat larger companies.

Own photo studio

You can hire an area at an affordable price already. Here you can create your camera shop to encounter light flash and other photo equipment more realistic. Naturally, you can even turn a room into a picture studio if you have space at home. You should also receive your earnings depending on the sector (product photography, stock photography, portrait photography, etc.)

Keep knowledge up to date

As an individual employee, you have to try to keep up to date. You don't have any friends you can afford or exchange details with. So joining associations, attending lessons, joining journals, websites, etc., is nice.

Register at Stock Offices

Many photographers don't want to put their photos on stock agencies because it doesn't make enough money. You can also view it differently. By making a selection of your photos that you do nothing with, you can still earn some money. Many photographers have thousands of photos on their computer that they do nothing with. These photos can yield a small capital per month so that you can invest again. Place your photos on as many different websites as possible and do this every month so that you build up a large file. This requires some energy and perseverance. But this also increases your findability in search engines because stock photos are often displayed on images or other websites. A stock photo always includes the name of the photographer.