Is the photography industry competitive?
Many people launch photography businesses with the thought that they will be able to make it their primary income or a nice supplement. However, launching and operating a successful photography business requires more than just raw talent. In order to succeed, you will need both marketing and people skills to attract and retain customers.
There is a high degree of competition both internally and externally to the industry due to low barriers to entry and rising consumer camera quality. Amateur photographers are entering the market at a faster rate with lower costs and putting pressure on professional photographers. However, this competition is not a direct threat to the core of the photography industry as amateurs typically do not have the same commitment and experience level to offer a consistent, quality service.
Internally, the competition is coming from new photographers launching their businesses and leveraging social media to generate leads. Additionally, the falling cost of digital and DSLR cameras and smartphones has enabled more individuals to enter the industry with a less capital intensive model.
The best way to overcome the competition is to focus on your marketing and sales skills to build a strong brand and reputation for quality work. I have consulted with photographers who have beautiful images and large clientele at their doorstep, but lose the business to a competitor because they do not understand the difference between marketing and sales. The mantra “Carpe Diem” or seize the day, is key to closing a sale in a highly competitive environment like this.