Photography may be a hobby for many, but it’s equally a source of income for the pros. And like any other business, instant success isn’t guaranteed. Whether you’re elevating photography to your profession from a hobby, or diving straight into the business aspect, it’s quite important to have an understanding of the caveats that you might come across. Photographer Chris Hau, who started his photography business a decade ago shares 5 business mistakes that he regrets making:
When it comes to business, clients expect quality results. They’re paying for a certain job to be done, so it’s obvious that they will have certain expectations that need to be met. So, don’t make the mistake of trying out new gear and new techniques that you read about somewhere while working for paid projects.
“Test out your gear on personal projects or you’re gonna lose clients.”
Mistakes can happen during the course of work. When it happens, it’s okay to show some courtesy by providing a discount. For instance, if you weren’t able to deliver what you promised, and the client will surely be disappointed, you can make up for it to some extent by giving them a better deal. Always know when to provide a discount.
Having clarity with the client is very much essential. When finalizing on any deal, make sure that you lay out all the charges, and have it on paper. This way neither party will be surprised when it comes to raising the invoice and making the payment.
Safety is something that you may not consider in the initial stages of a business. But, accidents can happen and it’s vital that you keep safety as a top priority. You need to ensure that you and your crew are working in a safe environment. Be sure to invest in some safety gear too, and not just in photo and video gear. Who knows, somebody could get hurt and file a lawsuit.
“Do not risk your life or the crew’s life for the production.”
If you’re starting out with your photography business, don’t let these points discourage you. Take them as a learning experience. Don’t always try to play everything safe. You shouldn’t be afraid of making mistakes as a professional. And if you happen to make one, take it as a business lesson and improve on it the next time.
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