3 phases to growing a successful prosperous photography business

3 Phases To Growing A Successful Photography Business – (Part One)

Have you ever wondered why so many photographers struggle to support themselves and their families with their photography business? I used to ask myself the same question too and it wasn't just me…

Most of the photographers I knew were in exactly the same position as I was.

If you’re thinking I'm exaggerating take a look around at the photographers you know and ask yourself, how many are truly supporting themselves and their families?

Let alone funding a good lifestyle through their business.

Three years ago I was sat at my desk trying to work out where I’d gone wrong with my photography business.

Things were not out how I’d imagined they would be – spending most of my time photographing fun clients who valued my photography. But it didn't matter how hard I worked, I just couldn't get a steady flow of clients. It wasn't for lack of trying. I’d been working hard at growing my photography business for five years.

I did ok but it was a constant struggle. I invested in myself by attending trainings and workshops with some of the best photographers in the world. A year on a photography business training course too…

I took action. Implemented what I was taught but it didn't matter how hard I tried it was a constant uphill struggle.

Have you ever felt that growing your photography business is a constant uphill struggle?

Clients loved what I did, I was even commissioned to photograph Prince Charles one year!

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I won a local rising star business award, worked late into the evenings, learned more about growing my business from “rockstar” photographers and gurus but still getting nowhere fast.

I was tired, burnt out and fed up throwing money at my photography business.

Maybe you feel the same?

  • Struggling to get your name out there in a crowded market.
  • Tired and frustrated with having to work all the hours just to get a handful of clients
  • Or maybe wondering if you should just pack it in and move on because you've run out of money and you’re burnt out?

Or maybe you're relatively new to photography and you're unsure where to go?

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What Do You Get Paid Per Hour?

Have you ever worked out what you really get paid per hour whilst you sit editing images, designing albums working on your business late into the night, whilst you should be spending time with your loved ones?

Did you know there's more than 185,507 photography business in the US, the 50 largest companies generate 40% of the revenue* but it doesn't stop there…

In a 2009 survey, only the top 19% made a profit of £30,000 or more. Female photographers are in an even worse situation – only 24% of female photographers made profit.* Not a lot has changed since then…

Is it any wonder that you’re struggling to create the photography business that you dreamed of? I mean we see it everywhere..

Photographers struggling to get clients, telling you that they can't succeed in photography because of saturated markets.

Photographers have even told me it's not possible to make a living as a photographer anymore!

I disagree – tell that to the thousands of photographers making 100k, 200k, 300k or more a year!

 

The Photography Business Is Worth Billions Each Year

In the US the photography market is worth $10 billion a year*. That’s photography alone not including vendors or the support industry.

The money is there…

So let me tell you this…if you’re struggling to get clients as a photography, the reason has nothing to do with the economy, people's buying habits, the saturated market or your competition.

That doesn't have to be YOUR reality. Seriously, let's get something straight here, you can make money in any market, in any economy.

It's as true for photography as it is for any industry.

 

You Can Create A Prosperous Photography Business

People are creating prosperous photography businesses in all kinds of markets. Don't doubt it, many photographers have been incredibly successful and there are going to be more to come.

I know exactly how you feel. I worked so hard, diligently applying what I learned, but no matter how hard I tried, it felt like I was running in quicksand- sinking deeper and deeper getting nowhere fast.

So I took the painful decision to close my photography business. I simply had no energy left to carry it on. It hurt so much, time energy and passion invested coming to nothing – or so I thought at the time…

Now I realise it was an essential part of my journey to do something even bigger.

There was something missing and business shouldn't have to be that hard. I determined to do something about it. It wasn't just photographers who were struggling, I could see lots of other business owners around me struggling just as hard in trying to follow their dreams and passions in business.

I immersed myself in learning everything I could about marketing and business. I still do to this day…

Some amazing business minds mentored me. Incredibly successfully 6 and 7 figure business owners. I learned where I’d gone wrong and how I could help others stop making the same mistakes I did. I realised I’d been trying to apply a mish mash of tactics for other people in specific situations.

What was missing was a strategy designed around me, my businesses and my lifestyle and not someone else's.

Check back for part two where I'm going to share the three phases to growing a successful and prosperous photography business.

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About the Author Louise Beattie

Louise Beattie is founder of the Prosperous Photographer. When she isn’t helping photographers fill their diary with clients by transforming their website from a pretty "brochure" to a hard working lead and client generating machine, Louise loves time playing with her dogs, MotoGP and watching The West Wing (again). She also likes to geek out about business and marketing.

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