If you have a talent for photography and love to meet new people, then you may have wanted to build a wedding photography business of your own. Here’s a quick step-by-step photography business plan to get you started.

Photo submitted by Olga Yastremska.

You will need to come up with an original name for your business and register it with the IRS (or your local government) to get your EIC (Earned Income Credit) number. You will need this number for registering every other aspect associated with your business. Business registrations are handled differently in each county or state, so contact your local small business administration to get started. 

2. Get Insured

You will be using professional equipment when shooting a wedding, and you want to make sure you can recover quickly should any of it get damaged during a session. Above all, it’s important to err on the safe side, especially when you never know when natural disasters or accidents happen. Equipment such as your cameras, lenses, tripods, or even GoPro for aerial drone photography should be added to your insurance list.

3. Open a Business Bank Account

When it comes to finances, you don’t want to mix your personal account with your business account. It helps you appear much more professional, and allows for smoother transactions, especially with new clients. Set up your business account so you can easily keep track of expenses and income with a spreadsheet. You’ll be thankful you did this come tax time. 

4. Create Your Business Marketing Materials 

Photo shot by golubovy.

You won’t get much work if you don’t promote yourself.  Create business cards you can hand out, develop a website, join an emailing service, and set up your social media accounts. You will also need to create contracts for your clients to sign, so a visit to an attorney will be in order. 

You can use a few social media sites to promote yourself, but you don’t want to spread yourself too thin. Use the most important ones initially, like Facebook and Instagram, and then branch out once you’re established.

Websites are essential these days, and it will be the first place most of your prospects will visit to check out your level of proficiency and creativity.

5. Build Your Expertise

You may have the talent and have been getting away with affordable non-professional level equipment right now, but you should always use the best professional-level equipment you can afford to shoot weddings.

Once you have chosen your gear, get to know it intimately.  When you’re in the thick of it at a wedding, your equipment’s operation should be second nature. Similarly, the most candid and natural moments occur at a split second, and you’ll want to be there to capture them.

6. Create a Wedding Photography Portfolio

Creative shots will go a long way to impress your clients. Photo by manifeesto.

You will need a way to show off your skills if you haven’t shot a wedding before. Ask to shoot a friend’s wedding for practice if they are willing. There are also mock weddings setup where new photographers can come and shoot for a fee. Put the word out that you are offering free photo shoots, or you could work with a non-profit.

Practice using your equipment every day and consider using a stock image site to host and sell your photos for you. You get tons of practice, plus you can develop a tidy side-income when people start buying your images.

Consequently, becoming a wedding photographer can be a rewarding side-hustle or a full-time career. Remember, there are more ways to make money with your camera than starting a wedding photography business. Always be on the lookout for new opportunities to supplement your income during the first few months. Next, click the following link to learn how to build a design portfolio that won’t be overlooked.