4 Photography Money Lies

There are a lot of photography myths regarding pricing and money. In this, I will cover big myths and expand on them in the video.

Here Are 4 Big Photography Money Lies

Myth One

If you raise your photography prices, all of your photo clients will leave you for someone else. While a portion of that may be true, it's a good thing, and here is why. 

An exiting client can be a positive situation because it allows for more room on your plate. When one client leaves, another one can enter. They've also signaled that their business is contingent on a bargain. If you are the bargain photographer, they will come back. If you choose to leave the bottom of the pyramid, they will look for another bargain photographer. They are loyal to the discount, not the artist. Let them leave. 

Myth Two

Your competition is bad, and you must destroy them and keep all your trade secrets from them. Have you heard this line about your competition? You may have heard a version of this toxic viewpoint, and I'd like to share another perspective. What if you introduce yourself before they find you? What if you say hello to them before they form a false narrative in their head? 

Introduce yourself to your competitors and turn them into peers. Ask how they like the market and how you can work together. Maybe they'll share information that could save you months of grief. Perhaps they'll be able to send you clients if they are booked or vice versa! My video will give you a great dive into all the reasons why you should turn your competitors into friendly peers. It's a game-changer if you're willing to join a community. 

How does this affect pricing? It stops the competition between each other. You'll communicate, and that means you'll likely have each other's back and stop undercutting each other. That alone is worth the time investment.

Myth Three

Starting with a discount will give them more reason to pay you more later.

Did you laugh reading that? I laughed writing that. Here’s the thing about loyalty and perceived value: the clients who want a discount before any relationship will never be loyal to you. They will be loyal to the discount. 

After their initial round of loyalty, they'll be loyal to friends and family. After friends and family will be coworkers and neighbors. After that are friends of friends, and then, it's you. Imagine thinking they will lie to the people nearest to them to keep your rate up. That’s not how it works. When you give the client a discount from the start, they will treat you like a bargain deal. Please charge your full rate!

Myth Four

If I offer them a great low rate, they will love me more. Wrong! In fact, you would be ruining their experience with you and a professional photographer like yourself. 

Here’s the experience: They want to pay more because they saved up for you. They want to brag about you. They want to tell everyone how they photographed with you. This means you must live up to their expectations and give them a positive experience. 

People rave about high-end photographers. They are often quiet with the discount photographers. Want photography pricing help? Keep your rates up because your clients will appreciate you more.

Remember that you are entitled to a fair living wage and deserve pay bumps. No one is entitled to your product and your talent. You should charge for your wage and stop using the excuse of "so many photographers in my area work for free or cheap" because it's only hurting you. If that's how they value themselves, let them. Let them put themselves out of business. That's not your narrative. Your story is about success. Catch the in-depth and bonus photography money tip in the video.

Walid Azami's picture

Walid Azami is a Photographer/Director and creative consultant from Los Angeles. He got his start working with Madonna + Co by contributing to her many projects. It was then he realized his place in the creative world & began teaching himself photography. He has since shot Kanye, Mariah Carey, Usher, Bernie Sanders, JLO, amongst others

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