Firstly, you need to get this right from the start and that includes listening very carefully and paying attention to detail of what your client is requiring.

Preparing a detailed quote can be tricky and cause issues in communications and cost you a client, so make sure you understand and receive a detailed brief of exactly what the person is entailed in the photoshoot.

There are many questions that you need to have covered like weather conditions, time of day, editing requirements, location of the shoot, and last but not least, the number of images that will require on the handover on completion within the time frame that meets the deadline.

Remember to ensure that your terms and conditions are watertight and clear, so you don’t encounter any unnecessary comebacks after delivery, and again, stipulate very clearly your payment terms.

How Many Images Do You Edit and Supply the Client

Many a time, the photographer will quote on a job that will only equate to a delivery of 16 edited images, and because the duration of the photoshoot resulted in many additional photographs being taken, for test purposes to prep the shoot, the client expects them all. This means that a great deal of extra time is involved to please the client, which result in many additional hours of work that are unaccounted for, making the job an underpaid and challenging experience. So, my advice would be to include the number of digital images the client will receive on completion in your pro forma quotation. Add a term like additional requested images over this limit will be billed at a reasonable rate per hour, at least in this way everyone is clear and all parties are happy in the end.

Payment Terms and Conditions

Payment is also area of contention, the big question is how serious is the client from the start. Make sure that you cover this in your quotation and insist on an order number. I normally charge a deposit, with the balance payable on hand over. Cover yourself, especially when building a new business relationship with a client. For the larger clients that have period policies in pace in terms of payment, ensure then that you offer them cash on delivery option (COD). The client needs the photos in the same way that you need to be paid. A waiting period of 30 or 90 days can be detrimental to your cash flow and often the account departments miss the pay runs. 

Show me the money… and Il’l give you the images, hold your ground, they will respect you and future contracts with the client will run smoothly in this regard thereafter.

Ensure That Your Hours You Work to Match the Hours You Invoiced

Depending on the size of the job and the number of hours required to complete the job ensure that you not only take the shooting and travel time into consideration, but the setup time, especially when shooting in studio where lighting tests need to be conducted, or where styling and change of wardrobe is involved. Models changing, or changing clothing on mannequins is time-consuming, so ask the necessary questions before submitting a quote. 

How Far Do You Have to Travel to Do the Photoshoot

The same goes for travel. Distances need to be confirmed, so if you have to travel far take your fuel consumption into consideration. Find out about parking, should this not be catered for, you might have to fork out a hefty sum of money for street parking, or off-street garaging especially if it is a long or full-day photoshoot.

If you’re interested in developing your photography knowhow and growing your photographic savvy, signup for one of our photography courses or just contact us for a chat and let’s talk about how we can further your interests.