Truly successful business owners don’t sit and passively wait for money to roll in. They also constantly revisit their goals, their strategies, and their progress. Coming up with a business plan is not a one-time deal; you don’t just set it and forget it. This definitely holds true for photographers. Get in the habit of examining your goals, running your numbers, and measuring your progress. Depending on your results, either fix what’s broken, or set a new, higher goal. Implement. Assess. Analyze. It might sound like a lot of work, but I guarantee the first time you meet your monthly goal, you’ll be hooked.
This month in the Business Corner represents the culmination of all the work we've been doing for the past several months—selling profitable products to your client at an in-person sales appointment after the shoot. It’s time to cash in.
For the past several months in The Business Corner, we’ve been building your sales system from the ground up in order to get you to your target sales average. Now it’s time to put all your hard work into action. It’s time to craft your client experience workflow to maximize your sales potential. That workflow starts the moment a potential client inquires.
Our goal this month is to round out your sales system with clever and desirable upsell options to entice your clients to get the most out of their experience with you (and to get you the most profit). A quick note about terms: In the strictest sense, upselling means selling the client a higher-priced product than the one they were considering. The terms cross-selling and add-on sales describe selling the client additional items beyond the one they were considering. It’s become commonplace to use the word upselling for all methods of achieving a higher sale. For the purposes of this article, we use the broader meaning of upselling.
For successful sales, you have to create a system that makes getting to your target sale easy and fun. This month, we focus on the role of your price list in making your target sale the easiest way for the client to buy from you. It is not just a list of every product you offer, but a systematic approach of presenting different items and offers that your clients can’t resist.
Cost-based pricing is an excellent place to start when trying to determine what to charge for a product, but it doesn’t work for everything. This month, we examine additional factors that may break the cost-based mold. Some strategies allow you to charge more than what cost-based pricing suggests, while others force you to charge less (or get creative).
In last month’s Business Corner, we discussed controlling one of the two types of expenses in your business: general expenses, also known as overhead. This month, we examine the other form of spending, cost of sale. Cost of sale includes all money you spend serving a client.
A common mistake that many new photographers make is assuming they keep every dollar they make. Businesses cost money. Whether you only offer digital files or you are a full-service studio, there are still costs involved. Cameras, lenses, memory cards, computers, hard drives, ink, paper, pens, internet, electricity, gas in your car—it adds up. If you’re serious about making money in this business, it’s important to treat it as a business. That means recognizing your expenses and learning to budget for them.
In last month’s Business Corner, we asked you to daydream about your ideal studio and lifestyle. This month, we’re going to take these dreams and turn them into an actionable plan. In order to do so, your vision for your dream studio must be clear. We’re going to start with your end goal, and then build a plan to get you there.
If you’re reading this, it’s because photography is your dream job. It’s probably not because you dreamed of editing images until 1:00 in the morning while the rest of your family sleeps. If we’re going to build our dream job, it’s got to fit within our dream life. So what does your dream life look like? The goal is to work to live instead of live to work. Let’s figure out how to make those dreams a reality. It starts with having a clear idea of your business model, volume and margin.