It might sound like a strange concept at first to outsource such an important aspect of your photography business. But outsourcing can be a wonderful answer to your time issues if you find the right editor. It is also important that you have built a fairly strong sense of your style so you can give clear directions as to what you want.
Reasons to outsource your photo editing
Once you have established your editing style a private photo editor can really dig in and learn exactly what you want and help build consistency for your brand. By supplying your editor with a few key anchor images that you have edited you can help reinforce the quality of your edits.
Anchor images are images you create in lightroom classic for any drastic scene change or lighting changes in your wedding catalogs. An editor needs a few anchor images for each wedding shoot so they can match your style.
Outsourcing your editing can free up your time for booking more weddings per season or spending more time with your family.
Outsourcing can give you the freedom to branch out into offering photography workshops, building and marketing your own line of presets or other business projects you would enjoy more than being stuck at your computer editing photos and that would also be a lot more lucrative and enjoyable ways to spend your time.
Can you afford to outsource?
If you budget ahead of time and increase your fees slightly it can be surprisingly easy to cover your editing fees.
Outsourcing your basic lightroom edits costs between .22 and .32 cents per photo. At an average of 1000 shots per wedding it would cost you an average of $250 per wedding.
Add in culling at the cost of another .05 to .10 cents per image and would need to add another $50 to $100 to your budget.
So you do need to budget this into your pricing packages for customers or adding one or two weddings to your season, but it can be a small increase in price to free up many hours of your time.
How to choose a photo editor
It is important to find someone who has an organized workflow and a system for getting your valuable feedback so they can build consistency with your brand. A private photo editor will take the time to learn your style so once you “break them in” it can make your wedding season a lot less stressful.
The best time to hire a new photo editor is during your off season when you can slowly get to know the workflow and give feedback while you have time.
Do you need to choose someone who’s portfolio matches your editing style exactly?
Every photographer is different so rather than worrying about finding someone who edits in your exact style, find someone who’s samples and style resonate with you even if they are a bit different then the way you would edit.
For instance, the samples on editors sites are usually varied and from many different photographers but they are all within a fairly bold and colorful style.
An editor that is comfortable editing clean and classic, or dark and moody and bright or bold styles probably not be a good editor for you if your style is light and airy.
Photo editing is a crucial part of your business. It can take a while to get used to the idea of outsourcing your photo-editing, but it can help build your consistency and reputation when happy customers receive their photos Quickly.