How to Become a Private Photo Editor: There are so many reasons to become a private photo editor. Maybe you want to work from the home office, travel around, spend more time with family, or look for another way to supplement your household income.
It only takes a few seconds to open your laptop and your workday begins. As a private photo editor, you set your own hours.
If you want to become a private photo editor, then this blog is for you! I’ll tell you five simple steps to take on this new journey!
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What Is a Private Photo Editor?
Private Photo Editors edit entire wedding or session photos through Lightroom for photographers/clients. They are generally contracted by photographers, meaning they outsource the entire session to them.
Step #1. Make Your End Goal
Why are you in the private photo editing business? What is the ultimate goal? Do you want to have it as a full-time job or a part-time job? To start your business, you must define your end goal.
You will be able to create a clear path if you have this end goal. Each decision you make will align with your ultimate goal.
Step #2. Select Your Niche
As a private photo editor, you can offer different types of photo editing services like culling, color correction, wedding photography, portrait work, newborn photography, architecture photography, retouching, etc.
As a business owner, you can offer all of these options if you like, but I recommend that you focus your efforts on one or two niches when you start. It’s not necessary to handle all types of photography at once.
Consider what you are passionate about editing and market to that audience. Also, knowing your photographer or client will help you as well.
Is this person male or female? How many weddings does he/she shoot per year? How many images does he/she deliver per wedding? etc.
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Step #3. Your Service Rate or Charge
You should decide your services and rates before building your brand and setting up your systems.
If you take this step first, you will be able to set your business’ financial goals and see how it will progress. You can price your services in a couple of different ways.
- Per image rate – Recommended
- Project or flat rate
- Hourly rate
- Monthly rate
- Yearly rate
The most common option is to charge per image. Typically, basic private photo editing costs between $.30 and $.45 per image.
It is very profitable to charge a per-image rate if an editor has clients who send large galleries for editing (like wedding photographers who submit at least 10-20 wedding galleries per year).
Step #4. Create Your Systems + Workflows
The setup of your business’ operations and workflows is extremely important! It will make working with clients easy and seamless!
Write down your workflow and stick to it. Then you’ll likely tweak it a few more times until it is perfect.
In order to run a successful business, you need a workflow for bringing on new clients, communication, and editing the catalog.
The most successful photo editors have simple, convenient systems in place so they can meet the needs of their ideal clients. It is best to avoid confusing and complicated systems, as this may discourage clients from following through.
Step #5. Marketing to your ideal clients
Both online and offline ways are available for reaching out to clients. However, I recommend using the online method. It’s more quick and easy.
You can do social media marketing (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and more), email marketing, blogging, SEO, and make youtube videos to reach out and attract potential clients.
Or do paid marketing with Facebook, Google, and Pinterest Ads to get clients quickly. Rather than just selling and promoting, you should provide value to your social media and online presence.
My favorite branding strategy for your private photo editing business is creating a website and listing your expertise. Having your own website and brand will significantly increase your sales. Your ideal client should feel welcome when they land on your website.
Create a WordPress website (with proper hosting, themes, and plugins), upload SEO-friendly content, and get ranked on Google to get organic traffic for a long-time business.
With WordPress, you will have plenty of customization options. You can build it yourself if you have the right knowledge or hire a web designer from Fiverr or Upwork.
Otherwise, build a simple website on Squarespace. Develop a community of support and value with the photographers in your niche.
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How Do I Start My Own Photo Editing Business?
- Make a strong plan
- Register your Photo Editing Business
- Create a Business Bank Account & Credit Card
- Set up your accounting for photo editing
- Get the Necessary Permits & Licenses
- Cover your photo editing business with insurance
- Establish your company’s brand for photo editing
- Create a related Website
- Set up your Business help desk or support system
FAQs – How to Become a Private Photo Editor
Can I Be a Photo Editor Without Being a Photographer?
Yes. It is possible to be a photo editor without being a photographer. They are both independent jobs, though they are closely connected.
Can I Become a Photo Editor Without a Degree?
Yes. A degree is not required to become a private photo editor. A private photo editor can work from home or from any location.
You can learn the necessary photo editing skills at home, on your own time, and at your own pace. You can also purchase some of the best online private photo editing courses.
How Much Should I Charge to Edit Photos?
For photo editing, you should charge between $20 and $160 per hour, depending on your experience, skill level, the amount and complexity of the edits, and turnaround time.
How Much Money Do Photo Editors Make?
The Average Salary for a Photo Editor is $53,400 per year. Those employed as photo editors in America make an average of $53,400 annually or $26 per hour. On average, the top 10 percent of Americans earn over $99,000 annually, while the bottom 10 percent earn less than $28,000.
Is Photo Editing a Good Business?
Photo editing is a lucrative business you can start from home. Photo editing has become quite a lucrative and sustainable business due to the demand for edited images on social media, e-commerce sites, and various corporate and social events.