Picture This: Photography franchises focus on profit

Franchising can be a snap… or a click. Photography franchising is getting a lot of, er, exposure, and has developed rapidly in recent years.

Despite the do-it-yourself digital camera explosion, Americans are clamoring for photography services more than ever--whether it's a family portrait to be remembered for years to come, youth athletic and team photos, school pics, or even portraits of pets. Homes are filled with scrapbooks, and walls are framed with photos of loved ones and special events throughout life. And for those seeking glossy reminders of special times and faces, there are more choices today than the stodgy old photography studios of yesteryear.

One of the newest franchise players in the photography marketplace is Marietta, Ga.-based Clix. The company already has 19 locations open or under construction since starting to franchise in 2005--and three dozen more under development.

"We are a portrait studio, a digital design center, and we also go on location to do event photography, which gives our franchisees multiple revenue streams," says David Asarnow, CEO and president of Clix.

Parents throughout the country will always want to document little Maria's first year of school, or the first time Robbie played on the soccer team. That's exactly what TSS Photography does for them. TSS has been handling school portraits and youth team sports photos wince 1983, and today has franchises in 45 states, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Its more than 225 franchises photograph more than 1.5 million children each year.

The Duluth, Ga.,-based company also handles photographic needs for corporations, church groups, and many other community organizations. You could say they're in the image business.

Grins2Go is a San Diego, Calif.,-based franchise that handles event and portraiture photography for all types of customers. With about a dozen franchisees established in western states, the company is now eyeing national expansion, offering two different business models to potential franchisees.

Grins2Go Studio combines a portrait studio, custom framing services, viewing lounge, and retail selling area complete with an automated photo machine. Customers can have their photos taken and printed on site. Grins2Go On Location is a fully equipped van or trailer that allows franchisees to operate as a home-based business, requiring a smaller investment and low overhead. That's taking care of business--in a flash!

It's also no secret that Americans love their pets, and pet-related franchising has been a very hot market in the last couple of years. Now you can add one more hot, pet-related franchise to the mix: pet photography.

Lil' Pals Pet Photography set out in 2004 to build the largest mobile pet photography franchise in the U.S. The Memphis-based franchise already has operators in several major metropolitan areas including Dallas/Ft. Worth, St. Louis, and Columbus, Ohio. Other major markets are being targeted for expansion. Franchisees operate out of climate-controlled mobile units equipped with a full professional studio and viewing area. See Spot strike a pose. See checks come your way!

Prior photography experience is not required for any of these franchise photo opportunities. Each provides extensive hands-on training in photography, as well as in managing and operating a franchise.

Photography franchising--in studio or on location--one more hot market ready to break out.

Published: April 27th, 2007

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