The decisive measures being taken by governments to slow down the rate of infections by the COVID-19 virus are necessary for public health, but are unfortunately having a negative economical impact across the board and certainly causing an immense financial strain on vendors in our industry.
At this point, many weddings and photo sessions have already been cancelled or rescheduled, and the status of upcoming jobs are uncertain. This has left not only couples, but also photographers in a precarious situation.
The sudden loss of income has left many photographers wondering how they will sustain their livelihood. Depending on where you live, there are different levels of financial support being offered by the government. Some people are fortunate enough to have a safety-net in place, while others need to become more resourceful to put food on the table and pay rent.
In this article, we would like to share with you a few ideas of what you can personally do to earn a bit of money for the time-being:
I. B2B – Photographers
- Offer vouchers/gift cardsYou can announce that you are currently offering vouchers/gift cards for sessions to take place when this crisis is over.
- Upsell to past clients
You can contact past clients and ask them if they would be interested in purchasing prints and/or albums.
- Request early payments
You can approach your current clients and ask them if they are willing to pay a percentage of the fee in advance (this is different from a retainer fee). In the instance that the wedding gets postponed and you will not be able to photograph it due to a conflicting schedule, you can transfer this payment for a different type of photo session in the future (e.g. anniversary, pregnancy etc.)
II. B2C – Weddings, Couples, Families, Portraits
Do you have resources geared at photographers, from which they can benefit from during this downtime? Perhaps you can consider offering these services / electronic products for a reduced price. This way, photographers can benefit from your resources and you can make some income.
Disclaimer: This is not advice to encourage photographers to take advantage of a bad situation at the expense of others. We encourage you to provide free resources as well. And when you sell, make sure that you are providing real value to the end-consumer.
Helpful resources can include:
- Templates (e.g. email correspondence, wedding guides, pricing guides etc.)
- Presets and/or Photoshop Actions
- Online courses and/or 1-on-1 coaching (video conference)
Think about ways in which you can diversify the type of services that you provide. You may be in a position where all or most of your weddings have been rescheduled or cancelled. It is possible that the situation with the virus spreading slows down tremendously within the up- coming months (none of us know what the future looks like).
If this is the case, how can you make a living during this time?
- Extend your photography offerings beyond people photography
How about dipping your toes into other types of photography: real estate, products, food, commercial, clothing, retail store etc.
- Provide editing services
Perhaps you can offer your editing services to photographers, ad agencies etc.
- Stock photography
You can sell or license your work to stock websites. Research the different companies to find out what they require, their conditions and their payment structures.
If you have any additional ideas as to how photographers can earn some money during this crisis, please be sure to share it with the community in our Facebook Group (Beloved Stories Community). We are all in this together!