Software recommendations for the freelancer starting out

As we start a new year, many are making resolutions. This is because we want to start on a good foot in the future.

I want to recommend to any photographer thinking of doing freelance to make it a goal of yours to manage the business side of photography as well, if not better than the photography side of the business.

fotoBiz X is the best way to manage your business in combination with Quickbooks, which I recommend. I recommend it highly because of a few things someone is starting needs more than anyone. It costs $299 and is worth the investment.

Probably the number one best-selling aspect of the software is the templates that are built into the software. No problem if you don’t know how to write a contract; there are some boilerplate templates. All of these templates have explanations and help support built into the software. Then if this isn’t enough, all those who use the software can also go to the online community forum to ask those unique questions and see if others have had experience.

The software helps you manage your contacts with your clients and prospects. I think the email templates are one of the best modules of the program.

When starting, you have no idea how to write a cover letter for anything you may need to do with your business. You can find an email template letter, and then after reading the letter, you will get a better handle on the topics you need to address. Then after reading the letter, the software lets you edit it and then save it as a template that you use going forward.

The wording in these letters is so professional and will help you get paid on time, thus improving your business’s cash flow.

Their series of collection letters helps you navigate the steps to getting paid from a bad client. Too many young photographers make mistakes of taking a collection to a level five threatening letter when a gentle reminder is sometimes all that is needed.

It also comes with fotoQuote, which will help you understand licensing of images and how to price them.

Using fotoQuote with Quickbooks is a great combination. Here is the explanation for the integration:

The difference between QuickBooks and fotoBiz is that fotoBiz is explicitly written for the independent freelance photographer and handles your business and image management in ways specific to the industry. 

With fotoBiz, your invoicing includes language protecting your intellectual property rights, which a generic program like QuickBooks doesn’t do. While fotoBiz helps you to track and run many types of sales reports, it is not intended to be a bookkeeping program. FotoBiz X is designed to be used in conjunction with QuickBooks. You can export a group of invoices (for example, by invoice date) or export individual invoice data. The export will create a file in a .iif format for import into QuickBooks.

I can honestly say that my biggest mistake running my freelance business for so many years was not buying this software earlier. I am positive that had I bought this and then dedicated some time to studying all that it can do, I would have been much more profitable earlier in my career.

Here are a few videos explaining the software that I recommend you watch.

fotoBiz X Overview

Duplicating Documents in fotoBiz X

Image License Tracking in fotoBiz X