How much should I charge?

FotoQuote is my #1 resource to calculate usage fees

I get the question from former students, colleagues and newbies all the time—“What should I charge?”

There are a few parts to that question. I am going to address the usage part here. You need to know how much you need to break even. We call this the “Cost of doing business.”

It has stock prices, assignment pricing, magazine pricing and quote packs

To figure the cost of doing business you take your living expenses of home and combine them with your overhead costs for running your business and estimate the average price you need to charge to cover this.

For jobs where folks are not buying prints to put on their walls at home you need to know how they plan to use the photos. We call this usage.  This is what I want to address, because this is where you have room to negotiate.  Your cost of doing business figure you have to charge that much or you are loosing money. 

Quote packs are great for helping a client get more usage and for calculating the value of the package

The way someone uses your photos can vary the price you charge. One of the best comparisons is the music industry. If you buy a CD of a pop group you can play this on your own device all you like, but if you have a business and you play it over the intercom system you legally should be paying the artist more money to do that.

A company on Wall Street cannot use the music on the CEO’s personal CD for the advertising campaign.

I love the coach feature.  It helps you know how to negotiate with a client.

This is also true for photography. The photographer maintains those rights to use the photos and can regulate how the images will be used. The client who hires the photographer can negotiate for some or all rights.

How do you know what this is worth? I use FotoQuote to help me get some idea of the rates I could charge. My recommendation is to buy the software and use it to help you know how to negotiate and get a fair market price for the use of your work.