February 01, 2022
No matter what type of wedding a couple plans — whether it’s a huge white tie affair at a vineyard or a spontaneous elopement on a beach — they can probably agree on having one thing: photos to capture their special day. And they need a talented photographer to do just that.
If you have a creative eye and a passion for photography (and love telling love stories) then maybe you’ve always wondered about starting a wedding photography business. We’re here to tell you how to make it happen.
The first step in starting a wedding photography business? Do a little research. Find out what the market’s already like in your city. Check Google Maps, Yelp, and wedding vendor websites like The Knot or Wedding Wire to find out:
What one wedding photographer charges in Hawaii isnotgonna be the same as what another charges in Georgia. Cost of living, demand for photographers, and population will all affect your market.
Next, look at your photography equipment. What gear do you currently have? What do you need to buy for your business, and what can wait until your business grows? A lot of this will depend on the services you offer (more on that later).
For example, if you already have someone who wants to join your biz as a second shooter, you might consider buying extra tripods, lenses, or memory cards to have on hand.
There’s a bigdifference between being the go-to photographer with an iPhone because you take great selfies and actually running a profitable wedding photography business. If you’ve never shot a wedding before, you might want to build up your experience and portfolio first.
How can you do that? One option is to work as a second shooter for an established photographer. Another is to work with another wedding vendor, like a bridal shop, on a commercial shoot.
Remember, being a business owner is like a separate job on its own. You have to be a great project manager, customer service rep, marketer, accountant, and much more on top of being a great photographer. Make sure you have what it takes to see it through!
There’s a lot of ground to cover when launchinganysmall business. A business plan can help you cover all your bases, from costs to launch, what you should charge, who you’re serving, and lots more. (Psst: That’s why we have a system that’ll help you write your business plan.)
We have a lot of resources about starting a business on The Contract Shop® blog, so make sure you give those a looksee. We’ll share a few crucial steps here:
You absolutely have to have a website as a wedding photographer! Sure, you’ll probably meet and book clients who DM you on Instagram or find you through their friends. But a website:
What pages you include on your site and what you want it to look like are completely up to you, but we suggest at least starting with these essential pages:
This is an important step, so we’re giving it its own little section so you don’t forget.Protect yourself and your shiny new wedding photography business with contracts. We have a contract template made just for wedding photographers in our shop!
It may seem easier to hold off on contracts and rely on casual handshake agreements when you’re just starting out. Maybe you don’t want to force new clients into signing anything. Or maybe you’re not exactly sure what a contract should include.
We get it! That’s why we’re in this biz. We recommend having contracts ready at the start so that you can:
Trust us, you’ll feel a lot better once your legal bases are covered! Then, you can move on to the next, much more fun step: marketing your new business.
Marketing a business is a whole different game. There are somany ways to put your biz out there that we can’t possibly name them all. We can, however, give you a few ideas:
That’s all, folks! We hope this blog gave you the little push you might’ve needed to start a wedding photography business. And remember, don’t let all your hard work go to waste! Protect your new business by using a Wedding Photography Contract Template.
Our comprehensive bundle takes care of it all: copyrights, services provided, payment plans, or what happens if a fight breaks out between the groomsmen — hey, weddings can be wild! Set your new biz up for success and start booking spouses-to-be today!