4 Negotiation Mistakes a Photographer mustn’t make

Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.
Albert Einstein


In the Last two years of professional photography I’ve become one hell of an individual I must confess. I see photography as an art, the love to shoot is above the love of making a sustainable living from it. It’s undeniable that shooting people results in direct interaction with prospective clients and payment is done by the individual hiring. In this post I want to reveal marketing and negotiation mistake I’ve made in the past (which I’m trying not to repeat)

1. Don’t be the nice guy
Okay, so you got a phone call from a close friend and she tells you another friend of hers is having a baby soon and she needs you to photograph her she’s given birth and also, the grand naming ceremony. So, you’ve decided to shoot and then you intentionally did not take the laid down principles for job payments, negotiations and contract agreements. When you do this, expect the worst! I once did that and I must confess, the experience is …..let’s leave it there.
So don’t be the nice guy, don’t join the casual group of photographers who work without ironing out terms and conditions of working. Remember, business thrives when family and friends pay for services rendered.

2. Don’t be caught in the middle of the ocean without a canoe
Sounds funny right? 😁, this is such a simple mistake you should avoid. When you shooting people, you have got to think like your clients. They want maximum satisfaction with minimum amount, you want maximum amount with minimum stress 😁, isn’t life a funny dude? So what am I driving image


When you’ve got a shoot, endeavor to go with all gadgets, ensure you’ve got receipts printed out, you contract agreement ironed out, your terms and conditions sheet too. Ensure clients agree to all terms and conditions before working. One thing you will avoid my doing this is “unpaid overtime”

3. Never offer limited image packages
The perfect photographer isn’t one that is restricted to few images. I believe when we begin to shoot, we get numerous ideas and we definitely shoot all. Clients then love all and he’s stuck with the fact he was able to pay you less with the offer, I only want 5 shots, now he likes 9 shots – He’s got to plead you to just send 9 and you will be forced to either send or ask for a little more money (which won’t be worth the amount of 4). So why not scrap this idea totally? Shoot a lot, choose slot and charge quite some reasonable amount.

Be considerable though
Humans are definitely different, some have got more than enough but still want to pay cheap prices for your services, but some clients don’t have much and are actually hoping you can be their photographer. It’s up to you to discern who is actually saying the truth or playing the prank. Remember, whatever you charge, there’s got to be a reasonable profit that will make you sit back and say, “Well Done Boy” 😊image

I’ll draw the curtain Here, I’ll be leaving for the ancient city of Ibadan, Nigeria on Thursday. I promise to still keep writing and sharing invaluable ideas and thoughts.

Remember, everything on this blog is open source


4 thoughts on “4 Negotiation Mistakes a Photographer mustn’t make

  1. absolutely great reading.
    it was our discussion today – i just was a little bit angry cos i shooted a friend of my son for a book (yes for free) and of course asked not to use these photographs without written credits. he used by my name just first two days and after this his mom started to use these images without any hint at the presence of the photographer. i said to my son today – no more free shootings.

    Liked by 1 person

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