How to start a photo booth business

10 Mistakes we wish we hadn’t made

Everyone makes mistakes…the important thing is not to make the same mistake twice….

Ok cool…in an ideal world, that sounds great.

But who the hell is living in an ideal word? Certainly not us Photo Booth Business owners …Most of us are trying our hand at something new, learning how to run the kit and also how to run a photo booth business.

There are bound to be mistakes along the way. We know, we made a few…so that’s why we’ve put together this list.

We call it our shoulda, woulda coulda photo booth business list…

Hopefully it helps you move your photo booth business forward and helps you avoid the pitfalls of the photo booth world.

Didn’t realize the full roll of a business owner

Yes, you own a photo booth business, now you must be good at running a business, mindset, planning, budgeting, knowing your equipment and software, networking, marketing, sales, customer service, staffing, accounting… this list goes on and on!

Owning a photo booth business is much more than just buy a booth, stick a post on Facebook, confirm a job, get paid and go do it!

Didn’t avoid the sketchy, cheap guys

The quality of your equipment significantly determines the quality of the services you offer. From the cameras to the printers and props, you must use top-notch photo booth tools to meet customers’ expectations.

If you intend to lease these items, take time to choose reliable suppliers for a smooth experience. Similarly, if you purchase the equipment, go for reputable brands.

It would be better if you spent more on high-quality equipment than to spend less on items that will break down after a few times of use.

Didn’t realize the importance of the right software

You are now a photo booth business owner, and your tools are there to help you execute the job, but your software is what creates the guest experience and final output.

It is vitally important that you invest in software that offers the latest in innovation and will grow with your photo booth business.

Didn’t price it right

If your prices are ridiculously high, you could be discouraging prospective customers.

However, rock bottom prices might give the wrong impression about the quality of your service, which, again, will push customers away. And it doesn’t take a genius to work out that undercharging quickly leads to losses.

Do the work, conduct some market research, check out the competition to understand the average pricing and set fair prices that reflect the quality of your services.

Most importantly you must be making a profit.

Calculate all your monthly business operating costs and use 5% of this as a base line for the service, then charge for your time from the enquiry comes in until the job is closed with post event customer service, add the event rental fee for a full day or half day; not per hour.

If you are not in profit, you’re not in business!

Didn’t bother with marketing

Regardless of how great your photo booth may seem; you cannot attract customers if you don’t spread the word about your business.

Unfortunately, many photo booth business owners ignore the importance of proper marketing and promotion; they cannot attract prospects and maintain existing customers.

When budgeting for your business, set aside a monthly marketing budget. You should also create a business website as an online store for your products and services. Optimize the site for search engines to make it visible and for credibility.

Then, consider effective strategies such as social media marketing, PPC, emailing marketing and networking and collaborations.

Didn’t nail the contracts

Some boothers assume they don’t need a binding document to run their businesses. This can lead to client misunderstandings or legal disputes, ultimately damaging your business’s reputation.

Make sure to have a written contract outlining all the details of your services, including pricing, time frame, and any potential issues. The best way is to consult a reliable attorney knowledgeable in this field. The expert will review the contract and advise you on the focus areas to ensure a smooth experience for both parties and protect your business.

A contract is to protect both you and your customers.

Didn’t stay down with the kids

You need to keep pace with change and trends, otherwise your booth and business will start to look tired and dated.

Scour the internet, join groups and forums, and keep on top of the latest software in the industry and get creative.

We are content creators, get creative! Come up with new and innovative ideas for your own business.

Didn’t prop ourselves up

You can never have enough props. Not flimsy, tat, no…you need to invest in robust, creative, colourful props – digital and physical.

They can make or break an image and are the perfect tool to capture the imagination and get guests playing up to the camera and getting creative. Keep your prop game fresh and keep changing it up with new props to reflect the trends, seasons, and your different audiences.

Remember a photo booth job doesn’t always need props! For more luxury bookings let the experience and quality of the output work its magic without a need for props!

Didn’t make it personal

Each client is unique. They want you to treat them as such. One size doesn’t fit all, and while you can save some time and money on repeat processes, you must, must, must make it personal.

The great thing about photo booths is that you can personalise every aspect of your service and give your customers personalized props, backgrounds, and templates, making each event as unique as your clients.

Didn’t listen to our customers

Ignore them at your peril. The Karens of this world are always keen to give feedback. And you might think they are just complainers…but you should always listen to your customers.


Positive or negative, there is always something to take away from it and by acting on it you can improve customer satisfaction, build trust, and attract new customers.

What you like is irrelevant

Yup hard to hear, If you’re 45 and targeting 21 year olds let’s be honest you don’t know what’s cool. You may not even like what’s cool. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be trying to sell it. Grocery store owners don’t just sell the food they like. Have the self awareness to know that just because you don’t like 360s or you think sketch bots aren’t high quality images. iPad booths are rubbish.. We’ve seen and heard it all. Don’t restrict your bank account with your restricted mindset. Nobody turns down an extra 50k a year selling something they don’t like. Trust us… You’ll always love the extra money.

We know running your own photo booth business can be tricky. Starting out we definitely wished someone had shared their shoulda, woulda, coulda list, so fingers crossed it helps you avoid the pitfalls of the photo booth business.

Don’t worry there is help at hand, with the awesome team and community in PhotoBooth Marketing

– it may be the smallest investment you ever make in your photo booth business, but gives huge returns to every photo booth business owner who joins.

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