3 Keys To A Successful Photography Business

Aug 09, 2023

1. Outsource.

2. Outsource.

3. Outsource.


Actually, outsourcing is the key to growing and sustaining ANY business.

As a professional photographer, the path to success can often be a juggling act. Anyone? :hand raise emoji:  From capturing breathtaking images to managing clients and marketing your sessions, bookkeeping, and more (don’t even get me started on editing and post-production). Running ANY small business demands time, dedication, and skill. 

However, one strategy that you cannot overlook AND must embrace, even when it’s painful (and it will be at first) is OUTSOURCING. Your business cannot grow if you don’t let go of the tasks that you can place in someone else’s very capable hands. 

Reminder: Growth means being about better serving your client base and increasing profits, NOT making your job bigger than it already is.

Reminder #2: Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should

To grow the right way, so that you can significantly boost your business's growth and efficiency you must leverage outsourcing. By entrusting specific tasks to capable professionals, photographers can focus on their core expertise, enhance their creative output, and expand their business prospects. 

In this blog post, we will explore the benefits of outsourcing for photographers and provide actionable tips on how to successfully delegate tasks to accelerate business growth.

What You Should Outsource

Here are common tasks that photographers often outsource. I recommend starting with what you LEAST enjoy or want to do, and building from there.

#1 - Culling, Editing & Post-production 

Using a culling, editing, and post-production service can save you countless hours, give you your evenings and weekends back with your family. Outsourcing these tasks also improves the timeliness of your work which means better serving your clients!

#2 - Administrative Tasks

Outsourcing administrative duties like client communication, scheduling, and invoicing can free up tons of valuable time. Many of these tasks can be automated or systemized with the right tools and platforms like a great CRM, like Honeybook and/or a scheduling app.

#3 - Website and Social Media Management

Anyone else have a love-hate with social media and updating your website? ✋

”Oh, but it will just take a minute….” and then the next thing I know I’m planning a trip to Portugal, making a recipe list for 3 dinners that I watched someone else cook, and sending memes and gifs to my husband with dogs on pool sliding boards.  It’s NOT just a minute (even without ADHD brain at play). Time yourself the next time you create a thoughtful reel or post, and hire someone else to do it for you!

#4 - Album Design

Anyone else put this task off ‘until tomorrow’ one too many times to then get behind the 8-ball and need it shipped ASAP to deliver as promised?  I know, I know you want your creativity and your art to shine through, but it CAN. After all, they’re your gorgeous images. You’re just letting someone else do a beautiful job of telling the story you captured.

#5 - Marketing and SEO 

This is HUGE.  One of the traps of DIY’ing every aspect of your business is the lack of consistency. That’s what happens when you’re wearing too many hats.  Unless you’re really structured and great at scheduling tasks, chunking your time, etc., marketing can take a back seat to whatever fire-du-jour you’re putting out.  

Working with someone to develop a quarterly (or yearly) marketing plan so that your message is consistently delivered can change your business!

How You Find These Angels Who Will Change Your Life 

#1 - Referrals 

Ask your friends and colleagues in your industry. This is an easy first step and social media and fb and community groups are a great place to start.  Try posting something like this: “I need help with XYZ -  please let me know if you have a favorite person/platform/resource that I should consider.”

You can also ask your clients for recommendations. Some of your clients are likely professionals and may work with people they love.

#2 - Industry Resources 

Professional organizations and groups, like PPA and WPPI, can be a great resource for building an outsourcing team. Reach out to your favorite organization and they’ll be sure to point you in the right direction. 

Outsourcing Is Your Key To A Thriving Photography Business

Most times when a photographer thinks about outsourcing there’s one of two things that hold them back. The biggest obstacles when you first start outsourcing are control and/or cost.  

Trust me, I get it! Relinquishing control of your business in even the smallest capacity is HARD. If the thought of turning over what you’ve built with blood, sweat, and tears is panic-inducing, remember this - baby steps are still forward movement. Start as slowly as you need to, knowing every step is getting you closer to a sustainable, thriving business. 

The same also holds true for cost. Start with the smallest investment you’re comfortable with, then go from there. Keep in mind, the more you invest in finding the right help the better chance you have for increasing your revenue and achieving real, tangible growth.