Photography as an art can be simply defined as a process of capturing light to create long-lasting images. But what it conveys has gone beyond anything that the inventor may have imagined. You can create memories, have an event recorded for the future, capture the essence of the breathtaking sight in front of you, or create a work of art.
A novice or pro photographer gets the same level of excitement when they capture a beautiful image and want to share it with the world. If you have a strong fan base, it is highly possible that they would be waiting for your next set of photos to enjoy and share. Don’t you think it’s time for you to take a plunge, dedicate yourself to what you love doing best, and convert it into a business?
Here are 9 reward ideas that you can implement in your business model that will help you stay afloat and thrive.
Reward Ideas for Photographers to Offer Their Fans
1. Community Access
Granting access to your community is one of the sure-shot ways of converting a large percentage of your fans into paid supporters. Since this is normally a perk offered to the lowest rung, you would see the highest number of takers in this tier. You could give updates on your latest work, give links to your workshop (if you choose to host one), or even start a random conversation with your fans.
2. Early Release
If your fans know that you will be releasing a new collection of photos (that will happen if you either have a newsletter where you inform your fans, or you post on a certain day of the week), many would want to get their hands on it sooner. Granting access to your pictures that will only be available to others on a later date is an easy incentive to offer.
3. Bonus Content
Your followers love your content, so a benefit such as bonus images (that had never been seen by anyone) or behind the scenes pictures will motivate a certain section of your audience to contribute. Try to make this section interesting – put up pictures that will pique your viewers’ interest.
4. Q&A Session and Hangouts
A benefit that requires more of your time, a Q&A session is one of the better approaches that work wonders in solidifying your relationship with your fans. You could set up a Discord channel, or have a simple Facebook page where you can take questions from your fans. You could also have more carefree conversations about your life or your craft in general.
For a select few, you can also host a Hangouts session. It will add a personal touch since you can see each other’s faces and feed off of that energy.
5. Fan Appreciation
Showing your fans that you appreciate their support is another bonus that you can offer. There is no dearth in the means that you can use. Customized badges for your fans, a wall of fame on your website, tag them on any social media platform, are just a few of the many things that you can employ for your rewards. This gives them bragging rights – and continued support for your work.
6. Supporter Participation
This reward requires more commitment and preparation from your end, but has the capacity to increase your membership count by leaps and bounds. If possible, you could take a backer on a photo shoot where you show him/her the ropes. This benefit is best reserved for the higher tier supporters
7. Tutoring Session
You might be into a certain niche (wildlife, food) which would make you an expert in that field. So giving live tutoring sessions (either as a group or one-on-one) would be a coveted perk that would be snatched up by some of your fans. This reward is commitment driven – however, these classes would stamp your position as a professional.
8. Digital Goods
Chances of you having multiple high-quality images on your computer that you have clicked are astronomically high (you are a professional – let’s not be delusional here). A few of those photos may likely have not been seen by any of your fans as well. So why not gift these images as your fans’ next wallpaper?
If you want to go beyond this, you could have it printed into a poster and shipped to a few of your contributors. They could have just joined the tier to which you give these rewards, or fans that have contributed for more than 6 months.
If you are certain that your work will remain unbiased, sponsorship is a profitable way to gain a steady income. You could be their freelance photographer (if they want that), or you could give them creative permission to your collection.
Do bear in mind that you would need to at least offer 3 tiers in order to maximize your earnings. Experiment with the ideas given in the article, or come up with a few of your own. And get that perfect shot!