In a world where everyone has a camera on their phone and a hundred pictures can be achieved in ten minutes (if you tap fast enough) most people tend to wonder what’s special about photographers.

Others may see photography as an easy profession, but freelance photographers understand that the struggle lies in landing gigs and clients. Compared to in-house photographers who have a stable income, freelance photographers rely on gigs after gigs and clients after clients in order for their businesses to thrive.

Therefore a freelance photographer has to strive as much as possible to be an expert at selling himself and his skills in such a manner that will attract customers and their wallets.

Here are seven steps on how to find high-paying photography clients:


Your dream is trying to imagine ONE single person that represents your PERFECT customer. This is a step that remains important for finding clients as a photographer beginner or as an established photographer.

Have you ever noticed a commercial that seemed to speak directly to you? Did you feel like the company knew exactly what you were thinking and exactly what you needed? You were likely their ideal client and that messaging was developed with you in mind. 

Effective marketing messaging will do this. It will speak to you, inspire you and it will call you to act. In order to create messaging like this you need to define your ideal customer avatar, or your ideal photography client. You need to understand their pain points, what motivates them and ultimately you need to know who they aspire to be. You need to understand what it is that they are seeking as a solution.

There is a perfect client for you. There are lots of photographers but no one else does it the way you do it. You need to define your client so you can adopt the best ways to market yourself as photographer and attract them.

Are they a couple looking for a trendy wedding shoot, or maybe a startup company in need of some slick product photography? Knowing your audience is key to attracting the right gigs.


You need to showcase your photography skills to get clients, and without a brand identity your ideal client will most likely have no interest in you.

The term “brand” refers to the unique identity that a photography business creates for itself, which sets it apart from its competitors. A brand is more than just a logo or a name; it is the sum total of a photography business’s values, personality, reputation, and customer experiences.

Time to spruce up your brand! Whether it’s revamping your website or jazzing up your social media profiles, make sure your brand screams “YOU” loud and clear. Consistency is key, so keep your style cohesive across all platforms.

Above all, the most important aspect of a solid brand identity is that your service leaves your customers reasonably satisfied at worst and incredibly satisfied at best.


You’re a photography wizard, so let the world know! Don’t be shy about sharing your knowledge and skills. Whether it’s through blog posts, workshops, or even just Instagram stories, showcasing your expertise will attract clients like bees to honey.

When potential clients approach you, some of the best practices for client consultations online or offline are:

a) Ask the most important questions for the potential gig. For example, as a wedding photographer, ask clients “What photos are you most looking forward to seeing on your 10 year wedding anniversary?”

b) Don’t talk about something you could easily show them

c) Give them the next steps at the end of the consultation

d) Offer clients a temporary ‘date hold’, which might help them go away and think about the commitment to book with you. You can give them 72 hours for example to book that date or it becomes free again.

Also, not every social media platform will be the best for your business. Think about where your ideal clients will be engaging and target your efforts there. Instagram is the most obvious contender for its sheer reach and focus on visual content, but other platforms such as Facebook and Pinterest tend to draw in particular audiences, such as those searching for family photoshoots and wedding photographers.

Sites such as Vero Social, Behance, and YouPic offer more specialised platforms for photographers. They’re newer media platforms, and unlike social sites like Facebook and Instagram that compress your images when you upload them, these are platforms where you can retain the quality of your photos.

You can also use social media to run special promotions and giveaways, which will encourage your audience to engage with your content and share it amongst their own networks.


This involves taking the time needed to curate a social media feed that tells a story and highlights your unique style. Obviously this involves obeying basic rules of good photography such as:

a) Identifying your focal point:

What element do you want the viewer to focus on in the frame? Once you identify your focal point, you can use depth of field and selective focus to isolate the main subject.

b) Consider orientation:

It’s not uncommon to have a preference when it comes to the way we hold our cameras. What’s your bias? Do you prefer to shoot in landscape mode (horizontal) or portrait mode (vertical)? Choosing which orientation to shoot in is as much about composition as it is about personal preference.

c) Fill the frame:

Filling the frame with your subject is a quick and easy way to emphasize the visual impact an image has on a viewer. Whether your subject is human or otherwise, the ultimate goal of filling the frame is to emphasize details that would otherwise be lost by photographing the subject at a significant distance.

These are only a few basic requirements for achieving a quality image. There are so many more to be considered and others which can be ignored depending on your preference or artistic taste. But the most important aspect of this is to remember your aim which is quality over quantity!

Also, social media has a lot of content ideas for photographers to attract clients if it is used as a tool for conscious learning and not as a source of distraction.


A portfolio is the crown jewel of any photographer’s arsenal. Make sure yours is polished to perfection, showcasing your best work front and center.

Among the best tips for creating a compelling photography portfolio, organizing your pictures by genre or niche is crucial, because it helps you cater to different clients and presents you as a proper professional.

You don’t want your clients confused or failing to quickly identify your capabilities in their area of need.


Put your social skills to good use! Engage with potential clients on social media, attend networking events, or even just strike up a conversation with that person eyeing your prints at your display in the marketplace or a local coffee shop.

ToAs much as possible always be polite when speaking with potential clients and even non-clients. You never know where your next gig might come from!


Last but not least, let’s talk money. It’s easy to undervalue your work due to the perception of others, but remember—you’re worth every penny! Do your research, set your prices accordingly, and don’t be afraid to stand firm.

Lack of confidence is one of the key mistakes to avoid when pricing photography. There’s no shame in being expensive if your service is top quality.


And there you have it, seven steps to help you to photography success! So dust off that camera, put on your best smile, and get ready to capture those dream gigs.

If you need a little extra help along the way, remember to check out Tristetix’s social media marketing guide to help you build a strong photography brand.

Happy shooting! 📸