Why You Got in the Photography Business In The First Place

“I ran the wrong kind of business, but I did it with integrity”—Sydney Biddle Barrows, the Mayflower Madam I know from my e-mail that many readers work in corporate environments harboring dreams of someday being their own boss. While some may actually be planning for this eventuality, others may find that, like greatness, being an entrepreneur can be thrust upon you. In my own situation, I long had a dream of owning my own...

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Photography: Is it Art or Commerce?

“Drinking beer doesn’t make you fat, It makes you lean….against tables, chairs, and poles.”—Anonymous Sometimes I think that photography is a lot like Miller’s Lite beer. Instead of tastes great or less filling, the argument would go — is it art or commerce? One of the problems with the business side of photography is that we always don’t get to choose the kind of assignments that come our way. Bread-and-butter studio or...

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How to Establish a Routine Especially With Your Website

On this Business Friday, I am honored to welcome Skip Cohen with today’s marketing advice: It’s always tough to get back on track after a great weekend, but there are times when I wish I could get off track a little easier. I just spent five days out of the office in Sarasota. The blog was all caught up with two posts in the pipeline when we left on Thursday. The minus side of being in a routine is simply how hard it is to...

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It’s Shark Week on Business Friday
Mar02

It’s Shark Week on Business Friday

Small businesses like photographers are a lot like sharks: Every year during the Discovery channel’s Shark Week, a sonorous narrator reminds viewers that if a shark stops swimming, it dies. I believe that when a photographer or studio stops promoting and marketing itself, it dies too, but there are obstacles in the way of becoming a lean, mean marketing machine. Some photographers (and I am just as guilty of this as the next guy) are...

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How to Find New Business Customers for Your Studio

F. Scott Fitzgerald once told Ernest Hemingway, “rich people are different from the rest of us.” “Yeah,” Hemingway replied, “they have more money.” Making more money is the goal for most photo operations, and while some startups often know who their target market is, only a few know who their actual customers might be. What they often lack is the kind of depth of information about future clients to sustain their new enterprise,...

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The Times They Are Still a’Changing

 “…the one fixed point in a changing world.”—Arthur Conan Doyle Quality, speed, price. Or as they used to say back in the old film days, “choose any two.” Before digital imaging came along, the introduction of new photographic technologies had been gradual, with each new product building on—and backwardly compatible—with what has gone before. Computer companies, on the other hand, are driven by intense competition and the realities of...

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Educating Clients is a Full-Time Job
Jan20

Educating Clients is a Full-Time Job

There are many Farace’s Laws but the most important one and one that is hard for some photographers to deal with is that your clients don’t care if you go out of business. Many years ago, a Photomethods magazine reader e-mailed me asking: “How can I make my clients love me?” My answer was simple: Cut your rates in half. They will love you but you will go out of business and they will continue to love you as they search for another...

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