5 Reasons Why Photography Businesses Fail (and How to Prevent Them)

Running a photography business into the ground is pretty easy to do with all the expensive equipment, travel, and studio space that many new photographers think they need to be successful. The truth is, there’s a lot more to being successful in the photography industry than having pricey gear or even taking top notch images. At the end of the day, your business is still just that—a business. Here, J.P. Morgan tells us five of the top reason photography business fail and what you can do to prevent it from happening to you:

In the video, Morgan highlights what can go wrong with your business, and here we offer you the antidotes that will keep you going strong.

Survival Skills for Your Photography Business

  1. Pick up the phone. Connecting with people is essential to generating sales and networking.
  2. Avoid distraction. It’s easy to get distracted by other things and lose track of what you are doing. As an experiment, log your hours for a few days and see how much time you actually spend working and how much time you waste doing things like gear gawking on your favorite camera retailer’s website.
  3. Talk about yourself. Don’t be bashful when someone asks you what you do. Talk about your photography and share your passion with people. You never know what kind of sale it could generate in the long run. Think of it as word of mouth advertising for yourself!
  4. Know the numbers. Being a professional photographer means you will spend a great majority of your time running your business—not actually taking photos. Know how to budget, understand how to price your time and work, and have a good understanding of business management.
  5. Identify your clientele. Know your demographic and market to them specifically. Be able to identify who is most likely to want and need your style of photography so you’re not wasting time trying to sell your food photography to the fashion industry.

As a bonus tip, Morgan and Lauren suggest you learn when to say no. Just because you are offered a shoot doesn’t mean you should take it. This includes family and friends. If you are an architectural photographer and someone asks you to do a family portrait, it may be in your best interest to turn it down. It is not the style of photography you generally do, and it will take time and energy away from what you really want to do.

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