With the downturn in the world economy over recent years, more and more people have been turning to their hobbies as a means of either supplementing a downsized income or replacing a lost one. This means that the photography market — particularly when it comes to the wedding industry — has become well and truly saturated, and it more difficult than ever to build a thriving business. If you’d like to find out some of the best ways to grow your profile in a competitive market, read on for five top tips you can take advantage of.
Enroll in a Photography Course
While it is possible to build up your knowledge of camera equipment, shooting techniques and the photography industry from practical, hands-on experience, one of the best ways to set you on the fast-track to becoming a full-time wedding photographer is to enroll in a respected photography school for in-depth lessons. A dedicated wedding photography course will teach you some of the best techniques for choosing and using equipment, taking advantage of lighting, finding the best settings for photos, deciding on camera angles, and editing photographs in your studio. On top of these elements, specific wedding photography training can also help you learn about the business side of the industry — after all, what good is a professional cameraman or woman without any clients.
Make Friends With Wedding Organizers
When it comes time to find clients and to start building a portfolio of work to entice future couples to choose you for their big day, making friends with wedding organizers can be very beneficial.
As planners often hire or suggest photographers to couples they work with, having some quality connections in this field can help you very quickly build up your client base. Attend networking events or utilize social media sites to make initial connections with wedding organizers, and then think about ways you might be of assistance to them so that you can build that relationship over time. You might consider offering wedding planners a referral fee for any clients they send your way, or perhaps offer to shoot one of their events at a heavily discounted rate so that they can find out for themselves how good your work is and how professional you are with customers.
Always Have a Prior Consultation With Couples
It’s also important to factor in time for a consultation with couples before their big day. One of the best ways to land new jobs is from recommendations from happy customers. As a result, it’s crucial that you impress each couple that hires you. In order to do this, you need to be clear about their expectations and desires. Have a comprehensive consultation with each couple before their wedding so that you can be clear about what type of photos they’re looking for; any potential family member rifts that need to be worked around on the day; which parts of the day need to be photographed; and if they require their photos to be taken in particular locations.
Organize Your Time and Expect the Unexpected
Wedding days can be hectic and go by in a flash, so it’s vital you plan out the day accordingly. Before the wedding, have a think about which elements of the day you need to capture and where you may need to stand for the best shots. Don’t forget to factor in driving times between locations, as well as potential holdups from wedding party members. Also ensure you are clear about how to get to each venue. Disorganized photographers miss out on capturing key moments at events, so make sure this doesn’t happen to you. As well, remember to have back-up plans in case of any weather issues.
Know Your Equipment and Have Backups
Even if you’re new to the industry, you should have spent plenty of time practicing your craft and getting to know your equipment inside and out before any paying gigs. Prior to an event, ensure that all of your equipment is working properly, charged up, and packed ready to go. Don’t forget to have backups on hand, such as a spare camera, flash, lens, batteries and tripod, so that if anything is damaged or suddenly stops working on the day, you won’t have an issue with completing the job.