Photo booths are one of the hottest trends at parties, weddings, corporate events, and other gatherings. If you’re thinking of getting into the photo booth industry, you’ve got good reason to: between now and 2027, the market is expected to grow by 16 percent, according to Global Market Insights.
This doesn’t mean it’s an automatic slam dunk, however. There are some things you can do to set your photo booth business up for success. Read on for a roundup of our top six tips for starting your photo booth business.
1. Define your target market
One of the amazing things about a photo booth is that it appeals to many different demographics. From bar mitzvahs and sweet 16s to brand activations and team-building events to concerts and school events, photo booths are in great demand.
According to the New York Times, meanwhile, many fashion and lifestyle brands now have photo booths in their retail stores, and even some celebrities like Neil Patrick Harris and Kelly Ripa have installed photo booths in their houses.
And then there's the rise in virtual events — meaning that many customers are looking for virtual photo booth solutions.
If you want to make the most of these opportunities, you’ve got to hone in on your target audience. You can’t be everything to everyone, and different clients will have different needs. The more you know about your target audience, the better you can personalize your marketing strategies to appeal to them.
Knowing your target audience is also essential to developing your brand and brand identity.
2. Set your budget
One of the most appealing things about photo booth businesses are their low upfront costs. Aside from the equipment itself, advertising, and whatever your staff needs will be, expenses are otherwise limited. You won’t have to pay expensive rent for a storefront or hire a lot of employees.
Still, you want to make sure you understand exactly what your costs will be, and how you’ll cover them before you start generating revenue.
Photo booth prices also vary wildly — from basic do-it-yourself versions to more sophisticated models. Choosing the best photo booth for your business hinges on two important considerations: how much money you’ve got to spend, and the wants, needs, and expectations of your target market.
Think about it this way: If your target market is the upscale wedding industry, a low-end photo booth is unlikely to please your clients and get you the repeat business you need to survive in the competitive business landscape.
Aside from the photo booth itself, other expenses may include the body/shell of the booth, a camera and/or iPad, a stand and/or tripod, lighting, photo booth software, a printer and printer media, and a travel case.
And don’t forget additional photo booth accessories and expenses, such as photo booth props, backdrops, marketing, business incorporation fees, business management software, per-event costs, and other miscellaneous expenses.
One way to keep costs low and make sure you've got all of your photo booth business essentials? Take advantage of photo booth packages.
3. Name your business
Many elements go into a new business plan. One of the most important ones? Your business name. Your name should be meaningful, catchy, and easy to remember.
Just make sure it’s not trademarked or already being used by another photo booth company in your area.
Finding one with an open domain name can also be very helpful.
4. Set your prices
Photo booth pricing is an art and a science. Pick too high of a price point, and you’ll lose customers. Price it too low, and you’ll lose money and consumer trust. Finding the sweet spot between affordability and profitability is critical.
One of the easiest ways to determine your price point is to research competitor pricing. Look for photo booth businesses in your local area that offer the same services to a similar audience. Also, pay attention to other details, such as standard rates, hourly minimums, package deals, add-ons, deals and discounts, and features.
Keep in mind that while your superficial goal is to compete, it’s also to differentiate yourself. Researching your competitors isn’t just about matching their pricing. It’s about finding your unique value proposition.
5. Get the word out
You could have the most amazing photo booth business in the world, but that won’t matter if you don’t have any customers. This is why marketing is so important: you’ve got to make sure your target audience knows about your business — and why it’s the right one for their party or event.
A comprehensive market strategy will carefully delineate exactly how you’ll achieve your marketing goals.
6. Build your community
New businesses need support to survive. An active community presence is one of the best ways to do this.
Attending networking events, partnering with complementary vendors, and volunteering your photo booth are excellent ways to raise your visibility and generate new business.
Cross-promotion is especially beneficial. After all, if you refer clients to a particular caterer, vendor, DJ, or other related service, they’re likely to do the same in return.
The photo booth industry is anticipated to reach a staggering $1 billion by the year 2027, according to GlobeNewswire. Following these tips for starting your photo booth business can help you get in on the boom with a thriving photo booth business of your own.