How Do You Get a Drone Photography Business Started?
Whew, this is a LOADED one. There is a LOT involved, however, I’ll try and outline the steps I took (they might not be in order though, lol).
- Learn how to fly a drone - I learned on a Phantom 4 Standard
a. Make sure you are familiar with flying, not only frontwards, but also backward AND when the drone is facing you (yaw and sideways flight controls are reversed)
- Study for your Part 107 certificate - a 107 cert is required by the US government for commercial operators. If you are flying for the furtherance of business, then you are commercial.
a) I’d personally suggest you study for your part 107 like you are doing so for a college course. Some say “I passed just watching a video or 2 off Youtube”. That might be the case FOR THEM, but for many more is needed than just a video or two.
b) IF you are going to study in-depth like for an actual course, I’d also suggest Pilot Institute. I took their course when they were on Udemy under just the instructor’s name and I passed with a 93. I’d also suggest purchasing a quiz app (like Remote Pilot Test Prep).
- Build a portfolio - this is essential. If no one can see what you do, no one will hire you. For instance, if you are looking to do Real Estate photography, I’d suggest you find a friend with the most fabulous house and shoot that (or your own if it shows really really well). Once you do that, repeat this process a few times to build a portfolio. The same process applies to any area you are planning to get into with drones,
- Create your Logo/Brand
a) I use a great designer from Fiverr (she does all of our different company graphics branding). Look for a designer that has a rating of at least 4.5 stars.
- Create a Gmail account for your business name (firstname.lastname@example.org) - remember to use your logo as your email picture
- Start your Social Media Accounts (with your new business email) and fill them with your portfolio pics - remember to use your new logo to brand yourself
a) Facebook and Instagram to start out
- Create a simple website - I find Godaddy works well, others use Wix and professional services
- Using your new logo, get business cards - for the budget conscience, Vistaprint works well. I also use v1ce.co cards, as they are NFC tap-and-go ready.
- Create flyers and distribute them
- Join your local chamber of commerce
- Get an LLC
Those are most of the steps I remember taking, in the order I did them.
As a side note, word of mouth is a PRICELESS way of getting yourself out there. Also, bring your drone EVERYWHERE you go. We recently had an experience at a local tourist hotspot where we had our drones with us and offered to do drone shots for a couple that was taking maternity pics where we were going to film. That interaction gained us 2 new photographer clients and multiple mentions on social media.
Having a verified Google my business also helps in ranking locally. Building an email list of potential clients and posting short posts on the Google my business also goes a long way
This is all great info as well and has helped us get some awesome clients. It really works…