I love having professional photos done. I’ve been lucky to find some great photographers just starting their business. If photography is your thing, you might wonder how to start a photography business with no experience. First off, starting a photography business can be intimidating if you have no experience, but it doesn’t have to be. With the right preparation and planning, you can become a successful photographer. Here are some tips on how to start a photography business with no experience.

Photograph of Renee sitting on steps

Taken by Cassie Boiling from A Touch of Cass Photography

Determine Your Niche

The first step in starting your own photography business is to decide which area of photography you want to specialize in. Do you want to focus on portrait or wedding photography? Or do you prefer landscape or event photography? Deciding what type of photos you plan to take will help narrow down what equipment and skills you need for success.

Invest in Gear

Once you’ve determined your specialty, it’s time to invest in the gear that will make your business successful. Start by researching different camera options and read reviews from other photographers who use them. That way  you can get an idea of what features would best suit your needs. Additionally, consider investing in lighting equipment and editing software. You might even consider any props or backdrops that could come in handy for shoots.

I’ve had one startup photographer improvise with backgrounds by using plain color sheets. Plus, if the weather is right, you can take advantage of the outside environment, like parks. You’ll find throughout this website, many of my photographs include outdoor areas near my home.

Build Your Portfolio

wedding photo taken by EdieAnother important part of launching a successful photo business is building up a portfolio. These samples of your work show potential clients what they might expect when hiring you for their project needs. You don’t necessarily need professional-level photographs. Even amateur shots taken on smartphones can serve as great examples, if they showcase relevant skills such as composition, lighting techniques, etc. Try reaching out to friends and family members who may be willing to let you practice shooting their portraits or events at a discount or free of charge while building up your portfolio.

Decades ago, a couple in my church photographed my wedding. The wife was the photographer entering the business and her husband helped her. Back then, she charged me about $100 for the CD of photos and I believe shot the wedding as a gift. Now that I’m divorced and most of the children in the photographs now grown, I still look at the pictures and smile. Years later, the wife, Edie, still follows her photography passion, but now runs a photography business.

Create an Online Presence

In today’s digital age having an online presence is essential for any small business owner looking for success. Marketing yourself as a photographer is no different. Create social media accounts where people can follow along with updates about new projects or services offered by your company. Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook are all great digital tools for photographers showcasing their works. You can also create relationships with potential clients through networking platforms like LinkedIn. Finally, build a website where people can easily find information about pricing packages offered by your company. Your website is also the place to add contact details so clients know how best reach out if interested in booking one of your services.

Network & Market Yourself

Female photographer with cameraAfter taking care of all the technical aspects involved when starting up shop, getting your name out is next. Here you’ll need to work on getting people interested enough in working with YOU over other competitors available on market. This means can mean marketing yourself efficiently through various channels like word-of-mouth advertising (reaching out directly via email/social media), attending industry events such as workshops/conferences related directly into field chosen etc.

By actively engaging within communities of chosen niche, you not only opens door towards gaining the exposure you need but also makes it easier establishing long lasting relationships too. Your network becomes a vital aspect within realm becoming established photographer!

For me, networking and marketing myself is the hardest part of running a business. I’m going to defer to the introverted side of me that makes this aspect challenging. For those of you who are also introverts or shy, you don’t have to go it alone. Outsourcing your marketing needs is another way to gain exposure without exhausting yourself with too many social activities.


Final Thoughts

By following these steps on how to start a photography business with no experience, you’ll be able to get up and running. I’m not saying it won’t take hard work and effort. However, these steps provide you the basics to prepare to move forward with setting goals aimed at achieving you desired results. Be confident and create your stunning portfolios to showcase your talents behind the lens. Immortalize memories others cherish. It’ll be those details you capture in each shoot that will deliver customers satisfaction. In turn it’ll lead to being hired again future endeavors alike!