Freelance photography seems to dominate the freelance world today—and with good reason. With the rise of social media and technology, photography has become a more accessible art form. Artists are more satisfied with their jobs than non-artist professionals and freelance photographers are no exception to this. With the freedom to chart their own paths and the ever-high demand for photographs, freelance photographers have the potential to create dynamic and lucrative careers.
However, with more photographers on the market, it is vital that freelance photographers spend ample out-of-studio time maintaining a rich client base and a profitable business model in order to keep a competitive edge. Workhoppers has compiled tips to help freelance photographers achieve the most amount of success.
Use online platforms to showcase your portfolio.
Make it clear to clients what you’re good at: do you specialize in portraits, sports photography, or landscapes? Find your niche, and work with it! Once you have differentiated your skill set, use sites like tumblr.com, Virb, or squarespace.com to showcase your portfolio. Make sure you set up your portfolio to accurately portray you as an artist.
Don’t fall into the work for free trap.
Many employers will try to skimp on photography costs by asking you to work for free in exchange for helping you build your reputation. Freelance photography experts find themselves working for free too often. As a freelancer you are a businessperson. Limit yourself to a set number of free shoots per year: perhaps a few charity events or one extremely important networking situation where the benefits outweigh your costs.
Always utilize your social media platforms
Success for modern freelance photographers often stems from how well they are able to use the online space. Connect with clients, friends, and family on multiple platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, LinkedIn, and Instagram. Photo-sharing networks such as Instagram and Flickr serve as excellent tools for photographers to get mass exposure. The more followers you have social media, the more clout you have as a photographer and businessperson in the world today.
Utilize job search sites for freelancers
Don’t expect jobs to simply come to you; always be on the offensive. One of the best ways to do that is to utilize online job search platforms. Make profiles on sites for freelancers to network. Workhoppers.com can match you with companies in need of freelancers in your area. Freelancer.com also connects freelancers with employers, in an online bidding situation, where freelancers offer quotes to get particular jobs done. Additionally, remember to periodically check the local universities’ job portals and other local classifieds sites for potential photography jobs.
Hours and Pricing
Never work without a contract that clearly states your going rate. To keep track of hours spent on freelance projects, use online resources like Harvest. Make sure you are always clear with your clients about how long projects are going to take. Good communication is key. Check out tools like Finalfile that protects your work until your client completes the payment process. How cool is that?!
Keep in touch with old clients
Any marketing expert will tell you that maintaining relationships with existing clients is just as important as gaining new ones. After every project, make sure to connect with the client on social media. Put them on your email list to keep them up to date on discounts or other special promotions you may offer. Keep yourself fresh in their minds so assuming your work is top-notch, they will be more likely to use your services again.
Written by Evelyn at Workhoppers is a platform for freelancers around the world to find dynamic and flexible work within their communities.