Create a plan for your business. It's so essential! Setting goals for yourself will be the key to your success! When you can physically see where you want to be and work towards that goal it is much easier to achieve. Create a word document for your business plan. Title it and save it somewhere safe and then ALSO to you desktop so that you can see it every day and be reminded.
TIP #1 – THE MISSION STATEMENT
Having a mission statement for your business will help you stay on track. This will also help you to see the clear vision of your business everyday. If you don't already have a mission statement begin by making a list. List words that describe your business, what it's about, how you're making a difference, etc. If the first list is huge then go through and pick out the most important pieces of the puzzle. Once you have the best condensed list form it together as a beautiful mission statement. Check out the Boudie Shorts mission statement for some inspiration:
TIP #2 – PRODUCTS AND SERVICES
Describe the services and products you want to offer. I know there are tons and tons of products out there for photographers to offer to their clients but know that you don't need to offer them ALL. There are tons of options out there so that you can pick and choose what will best fit with your business and your mission statement. Most importantly make a list of the products and services you offer. I even write next to them WHY I offer them. Often times it's easy for us to get derailed from our vision and we find ourselves wanting to offer anything anyone asks for us because, let's face it, money speaks 😉 It's so important though to stick to your vision and your plan because in the end if you're doing what you TRULY love you will be successful.
TIP #3 – FINANCIALS
Financials are the best part! If you dread dealing with numbers, STOP! I promise you it's FUN! You own your own business. In no salaried job do you have the power to set a financial goal for yourself!! This is where you get to DREAM. This is where you get to set a goal for yourself and then work to achieve it. So I want you to do just that. I want you to set your gross and net income goals for the year. If you need more direction with numbers and pricing your services check out these amazing pricing guides! I LOVE numbers and would love to chat with you about your numbers and get your business going in the right direction! You should also be including ALL of your financial information such as office expenses, marketing budget, rent, etc. To get a better idea of what should all be included check out this article here.
P.S. If you want some dedicate help and coaching when it comes to marketing, business, and numbers, check out my unique coaching program, Boudoir Certified! I help photographers build six-figure businesses through photography and business education.
TIP #4 – SHOOT GOALS
List the different shoots or services you offer. Then under each category list how many of those you want to book for the year. TIP: If you're unsure how many shoots you will need for the year, a fast way to get an estimate is to divide your gross goal income by your goal average sale per shoot. I break mine down even further with number slots and then once I book a shoot I put the name of the person in and my estimated sale for that shoot. This really helps motivate me to meet my goals! Then once the shoot and sale is over I go in and put what the sale was. I keep this tally going the whole year. Nothing feels better then reaching and exceeding your goals!
An important part to achieving your shoot goals would be in your marketing efforts.
TIP #5 – VISION
Describe where your business is, where you want it to be in the next year and where you see it heading in the far future. In addition to writing your vision into your business plan I also highly encourage you to create a visual GOAL BOARD for your business! Have you ever watched the movie or read the book called The Secret? Well the truth is goals really ARE that powerful. Last year I watched The Secret and created a vision board. I used a piece of cardboard and cut out photos of goals I wanted to achieve and glued them on to create my board. The truth is I put the board in my closet and forgot about it. Just last week I found it in my closet! I was astonished to see how many of those goals I had accomplished! Even though the board was out of sight it wasn't out of mind and taking the time to create it let me see that it was all possible.
Lastly I'd like you to write yourself a letter. That's right. I'd like you to write your future self a letter. In this letter include a summary of the goals you want to achieve and tell yourself congrats for achieving those. Writing yourself in the future congratulating yourself lets you know you CAN do it and will do it. You can write a letter and tuck it away for a year or two, or you can use this site to write yourself an email and they'll send it to you on a scheduled date! Then once you receive the email in the future you will either smile at your accomplishments or it will light a fire under your butt to get working 🙂 Always staying motivated is one important key to success!
Plant as many seeds of motivation for yourself as you can. That way if you're having a time in your life where you're feeling unmotivated or lost, those seeds will help you find your most motivated productive self again!