kara evans


Creating a Photography Business Plan

Creating a Photography Business Plan by Kara Evans – a wedding & family photographer, VA for photographers, and mentor based in Chicagoland.

June 6, 2023

Hey, I’m Kara!
Hey, I’m Kara! A wedding and family photographer based in Kankakee, Illinois! Whether I’m photographing your wedding day or everyday milestones and memories as a family, this job is my joy.

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I’ve got a question… How often have you taken a road trip without looking at a map? Hmmm, probably not often unless that was the plan! Your photography business plan is your roadmap, and it’s incredibly important to navigate your business with a map that you create!

Start with your goals.

Your first stop to a great photography business plan is goal setting. Start with your goals whether they are short-term, long-term, or seemingly lofty goals. Write them down! When writing your goals, think about the kind of photography business you want to be, the products or services you will offer or dream of offering, the way in which you will serve your clients, and how you want your business to grow and succeed. In this goal-setting process, also be sure to think about your financial goals for your photography business. And remember, goals will evolve and change and that’s okay! No goal is too far to reach!

Look at your ideal client.

Maybe you already know who your ideal client is. For example, the business professional living in the suburbs with a few kiddos or someone who values fine, handmade goods – dig deep here to truly know this person. Whatever the case, you must take time to intentionally learn, understand, and market to your ideal client. My best advice regarding your ideal client is to think back to your best or favorite real-life client or clients. Who was this person? What did they value? What were their careers and hobbies and interests? Focus on these intricate details. Then, make a plan along your road map – from business goals and decisions to branding to client gifts to product offerings – with your ideal client at the forefront of your mind.

Evaluate your brand.

What’s working? What’s not working? Does your brand align with your goals and ideal client? Does your social media presence accurately represent your brand? Truly reflect on your brand and the experience you are offering within your business. Make a photography business plan for how you can make your brand fit with your goals and ideal client! And as always, it’s okay to make changes within your brand that better serve your ideal client, you, and your photography business! If you’re still struggling here, my girl Kelsey at Launch Your Daydream is a branding and website guru that can help.

Put systems into place.

As a wedding and family photographer and virtual assistant for photographers myself, I am a systems kind of gal! Putting systems into place within your photography business is, I would argue, one of the most important parts of a business plan. These are your parameters – set by you! The systems that you put into place are a grounding force along your business roadmap that always help to keep you on track. It’s part of my passion to encourage fellow photographers to put systems into place throughout 1-1 mentoring and through my work as a virtual assistant for photographers! Some systems you can think about when business planning are: client management software, content marketing, email lists, blogging practices, client communication, finance tracking, email responses, workflow, client gifting, social media, and so many more. Find what systems work best for you and lean into just that!

And finally, create a plan to be your best boss.

That’s right! Plan to be your best boss. You are the only one in control of being your best boss as a photographer. And that’s the beauty of being a photographer and business owner! Intentionally make business decisions and create your business roadmap around what works best for you and your life. Respect yourself, your time, your talents, your people, your values, and your schedule as you plan within your business.

Friends, photography business planning does not have to be a discouraging task! Let your creativity and strengths and entrepreneurial spirit lead the way and guide you to creating your photography business roadmap. And please don’t hesitate to ask for help from a mentor.

Plus, it’s okay to revisit and revise your business plan – weekly, monthly, or yearly – as your photography business grows and changes. I promise this is going to be the best trip of your life!

Creating a Photography Business Plan by Kara Evans – a wedding & family photographer, VA for photographers, and mentor based in Chicagoland.

P.S. – Wanna learn more about my work as a virtual assistant for photographers or 1:1 mentoring?

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Chicagoland wedding & family photographer based in Kankakee, Illinois