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What Investments you Should Make for your Photography Business?

What Investments you Should Make for your Photography Business?

So, it's been just over a year since I published my "21 Essentials to Start a Photography Business". And I can't tell you how many times I go through the comments and I always see a comment that article basically just looks like a straight-up ad.

And honestly, it made me really start thinking like, do most of you all understand what it takes to start a business?
Because while that article might seem like an ad, I don't know of any businesses that you can start without making some type of investment, whether it being monetary or your time, you have to invest some kind of way. So, I don't know why everyone thinks it's just an ad. I mean, there are tools to help you run your business.

But since we're talking about investments, let's go ahead and talk about 7 investments you should be making into your photography business.

And if you haven't had a chance to check out the "21 Essentials" article, make sure to check it out. I have a whole bunch of articles talking about specific gear and services that you should get for your photography business. But now I just want to talk about the investments themselves, what you should overall be looking to invest in 'cause again, it is a business and you have to pay to play.

1. Gear

Gear is the thing that everybody knows about, everyone knows that they're gonna be investing in it. This includes your camera, your lenses, any sort of lighting, camera straps and accessories for your camera, batteries for your camera, SD cards, and storage for your camera. Just all of your initial gear. Again, I have an article where you can check out some of the gear that I actually recommend that you should invest in. But again, we start out plain and simple with the gear.

2. Services

The next place that you should be investing in your business is the one that no one ever thinks of but makes the biggest difference, which is in your services. Services are gonna include things like getting an email address, 'cause yes, getting a legitimate-looking email address is huge. Getting a website, getting a client management system so you can collect your payments and send off your contracts.

This includes your editing software, like Lightroom or Capture One. Anything for bookkeeping, even if you're doing it yourself, you're still investing in that. Whatever services you might be using to track your finances and make sure that your credit cards and everything looks good and it's paid off. And other side services like maybe signing up for Zoom or something, so that you can have meetings with your clients or anything of that sort.

Services is honestly, in my opinion, the most important part of running a photography business aside from the gear itself. The gear is again obvious, you have to have that to take pictures, but secondly having the services is what's gonna help you to continue to run your business and to also pay the bills.

3. Education

Your third biggest place of investment should be on education. Making sure you have the right tools for the job is important, but knowing that you know how to use those tools is way more important than just having them. Investing in education is something you should always do and something I still do myself to this day. Don't ever think that you're good enough and you don't need to learn.

Places that you can find education will be on YouTube, things like Skillshare, making sure you sign up for workshops and going to workshops, Styled Shoots, online courses, or even mentor sessions which I do offer some myself.

But education is highly, highly important and if you have not gone to a wedding photography workshop or just a photography workshop in general, I highly recommend you try to go to one. Seriously, it will make a huge difference in your photography business.

4. Clothing/Uniforms

Next up, and this is especially for wedding photographers is investing in your uniform or your outfits. Again, as a wedding photographer, you don't want to show up to a wedding just looking like whatever, you need to make sure that you're dressing the part and you match the guests while you're at the wedding, so you don't look totally out of place. I've been planning for a while to make an article on what I wear to weddings.

So if you want to see that please let me know in the comments below. But your uniform is basically gonna include suits or nice slacks and button-up shirts and also nice shoes that are comfortable, but look great. If you want to get super fancy with it, you can throw in ties and vests and things of that sort as well.

But again, this is gonna be the standard clothing that you're gonna be wearing at wedding days and I highly recommend investing in this. Don't just think you can throw on whatever, you need specific outfits for your wedding days.

5. Delegation/Outsourcing

Now, this next place to invest is gonna be when your business starts getting a little bit larger and you're trying to save yourself more time so you can invest it in other places, but that's gonna be in the delegation. Investments in delegation is absolutely huge when it comes to having a work-life balance. Currently, in my business where I'm at, about 5 to 6 years in, delegation is the main thing that I'm starting to focus on.

Delegation is gonna include things like having a second photographer, outsourcing your editing, maybe even having a virtual assistant. If you wanna grow your business even larger you can also look into having associate photographers, which is a photographer who will go do a wedding for you while you can also book another wedding for yourself. So you're basically almost getting double the money.

Obviously, you pay them as well, but for the full booking, you do get a piece of it also. And again, like I said, delegation is huge. With me, with 3 kids and one on the way and also making articles and also doing wedding photography, I have to delegate out most of my stuff. I mean, pretty much at this point, I don't really edit any of my photos.

I'm outsourcing that stuff and then finishing it off, which if you're interested in that and you're curious about how that works, let me know in the comments below as well and I'll make an article on it.

6. Advertising

And again, on the topic of having to pay to play, next up is advertising. Advertising is another investment that's pretty obvious. You're not really gonna find couples if you're not investing in advertising. This includes signing up for things like The Knot or WeddingWire, or even using a service like Thumbtack, that's actually how I started. This also includes having stuff like flyers or business cards and even signing up for a local wedding expo.

I've done a couple of wedding expos in my time and honestly, especially when they're local, they're really good to get your name out in the area. And this is something else I'd love to make a video about at some point, so if you want to see it, let me know in the comments below. But do not skimp on your advertising, it is very important.

You don't have to shell all of your money into it and obviously using things like Instagram or Facebook, just by themselves, can help you book more weddings but also advertising on those platforms definitely, definitely makes a big difference.

7. Health

Last but not least, one of the most important investments you can make is in your own health. As a photographer and a wedding photographer, you are basically your business, your eye, your approach, how you take the photos, and physically being there. And if you know anything about wedding days, you know they are trying physically, you're talking 8 to 12 hours of being on your feet. At least 6 hours of not eating, barely drinking water, it's just a lot.

It is so much doing weddings. And being in decent shape, feeling good, and having great health is huge to help out in that. The type of investments you'll be making for your health are gonna be in gym memberships, getting massages pretty regularly. Maybe even buying one of those little massage guns, which I'm looking at getting one myself.

Making sure you have a great multi-vitamin and you're eating well and also in things like Epson salt and other vitamins and minerals that you can soak yourself in or take or whatever. And seriously, make sure you're investing in this.

Personally, I, myself recently lost about 30 pounds and it made a huge difference and the wedding days don't hurt me as much as they were before. I feel so much better, I was feeling really bad before, but investing in your health is very important and you don't want to be at a wedding day feeling like you're dying the whole time just because you have not been investing in your health.

Last words

So again, investing in your business is huge. I don't know why anyone would look at the "21 Essentials" article and say that it's just a big ad. While, yes I am recommending tools that you can use, show me a business that you don't have to make investments in, in either monetary investments or your time, like really that's business you all.

You pay to play and the more money you make, the more you pay and it's just a cyclical kind of thing. Let me know what you thought of these investments that I talked about and, also, if there's any other places you think you should invest in for your business, let me know in the comments below.

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