What kind of business do you want to run? How do you want to compare to your competition?
Let’s Talk Business, Photography or Otherwise
Target or Barney’s? Both are wonderful, but distinctly different businesses. We love both stores, but we have a very different expectation at both. What kind of expectations should your clients have of you and your photography business? In the early stages of business development, it’s time to consider what kind of business you want to run and why you started it in the first place.
When I started my photography business, I wanted to set Target prices, but deliver Barney’s quality. I was inexperienced as a photographer, but very experienced in being a customer. I wanted to surprise and delight every client. I made up for my shortcomings with personal care and time. I wanted to keep every client I had even if I started to charge more and more each year because I fully intended to keep my prices on par with my ability.
I have been in business 5 years now – and I am happy to say I have significantly raised my prices each year, but maintained about 60% of my clients from my first years of business. Not much about how I deliver my product has changed. I feel like the scales have leveled out and I am a Nordstrom-esque business who delivers consistent quality, but aims to compete with Barney’s. Always aim higher.
In marriage, friendship, and your professional life, there is always one thing that remains true for me. You could ALWAYS be doing more and trying harder. There is a photo that hangs on my wall right above the view of my computer screen that says, “Go the extra mile, it’s never crowded.”
- What type of business do you want to start?
- Who is your ideal client?
- What should they come to expect from you?
- What differentiates your business idea and the products or services I will provide from others in the market?
- What products or services will my business provide?
These are just the tip of the iceberg of planning and strategizing you need to do before you get your business off the ground and thriving. Every year I answer these questions again (along with 95 others) so that I can realize my ultimate business goals and align my reality with my intention.
A great place to start this process is to ask yourself, “Are you a Target or a Barney’s?” What do you need to do to deliver on a consistent basis to your clients?
If you liked this blog, you may also like: Open Letter to the Disappointed Client