Is editing right for you?
Many photographers are considering either outsourcing their editing or offering editing services. It is a conversation that is not talked about as much and we're changing that today!
As a photographer Marissa wants you to know that hiring out your editing does not de-value what you offer. You should think about it as having a partner or right-hand person in your business who truly knows how you want things done. You will have to teach them your style and how you edit, meaning you won't have to give up artistic control of your business.
Benefits of Outsourcing
If you're a photographer:
- Freedom for more time with family or traveling (aka LESS time at a computer).
- Adding more weddings / sessions to your calendar because you have more time.
- Venturing into education for others in the industry.
If you're an editor:
- Freedom to work from home or be location-independent.
- Adding another revenue stream when business is slow or if you're just starting out
- Learning more about the photography industry from the support side, and not working directly with the subjects of the photos as the clients.
Private Editor vs. Editing Company
Relationship is the name of the game. With a private editor, you work with the same person on every gallery and they truly get to know your style. You only have to worry about training and dealing with one person. She has been working with Katelyn for 6 seasons now. With some of the bigger companies, you may have someone different each time and there’s a chance you’ll have to go through customer service each time you need an edit.
Should you become an editor?
Three big categories:
Lifestyle - what is your lifestyle stage? No nights and weekends, not location dependent - achieving a dream lifestyle
Slow growth - Are you wanting to grow your business faster than it currently is?
Enjoy editing - You may enjoy taking photos, but you love the editing process.
Generally speaking, you enjoy the behind the scenes work, and not always being on the client-faced side of the business. And it frees up the photographer to focus on other sides of their business - the client care side.
- Be teachable
- Understand functionality of Lightroom
- Enjoy repetition - you will be sitting behind the computer looking at the same type of photos all the time.
You are still running a business as an editor, so make sure you have systems in place that offer your clients security to know you’ll get the job done. There may be things you have to teach them as well. Offer to edit some samples for them too. They become more aware that someone else is looking at their photos as they take them.
If you’re looking to outsource
You need to remember that there is a learning curve. Whoever you hire won’t get your editing style 100% right the first time. Keep the long term relationship as your end goal, and be open with them about your thoughts and styles as you go.
If you’re looking to be an editor
Be open and ask for feedback. Be teachable, don’t expect to get it right the first time. Approach your current network first to get started - they already know and like you. If they aren’t looking to outsource, they will know people who are.
Three Things to Focus on
Confidence - It either holds you back or propels you towards success. Clients will be looking to you to help them transition into having an editor. Put some systems in place to help that transition run smoothly.
Communication - This is key for working with any clients. Again, be teachable and open towards critiques. Also, life happens so let them know clear timelines and any changes to those timelines sooner rather than later.
Slow growth is good growth. - Don’t rush to have 12 clients if your communication and confidence need work. Build that with just a few clients and you won’t feel overwhelmed when you have 10 or more!