Posts that illustrate the cost of running a photography business and deriving an hourly (or a daily) rate from it are becoming somewhat of a standard. (We even did one ourselves, and here is another one). Those posts make a strong connection between the cost of doing business (renting a place, buying a camera and so on) and the fees that a photographer need to charge.
The team over at Salesographer makes what I think is a very true statement about the fact that the money you charge should have nothing to do with how much it actually costs to produce a shoot. It has everything to do with the value you bring to the table. They actually go right against those cost sharing posts and say that:
Every time you share a list of business expenses to justify your price, you tell the world that you don’t take yourself seriously as a business owner (and that they shouldn’t, either).
Your value is not derived from the costs that it takes to produce the work you produce. Your value is derived from the work you produce. And the service you provide. And the fact that you are the only one who can do what you do. Period. #
For me that makes total sense as creatives are not in the market for selling a commodity where the price is cut as a percentage of the cost, they sell a premium service.
That said, CODB (cost of doing business) should definitely be something you are aware of just to make sure you can keep running a business. Both Don Giannatti and a photo editor have some great tips on bidding and quoting.