Business Tips for Photographers from The Shoppe Marketeer ~ Do What You Love?
Business Tips for Photographers from The Shoppe Marketeer
Do What You Love? Good Advice or Bad?
Some weeks I sit down at the keyboard to give some little tidbit of business advice for photographers
and my fingers hit the keys with the greatest of ease. Other weeks, in fact most weeks, I have some fuzzy idea of what I want to say, of what I think is good advice, and no clear way of how or why to say it. I do what any writer, much like any kind of artist, does. I seek inspiration. Today, I've had an interesting experience with that.
We're having a really exciting week at The Shoppe! We're "re-launching" our newly designed blog, newsletter, and eventually website, after what seems like an eternity of work and planning, and we've been looking forward to sharing our little facelift (and more) with you! I knew I wanted to write a tip that helped to share with you why we've made the changes that we have. The "fuzzy idea" came to me quickly. The words "do what you love" came to mind. I mulled them over for a few days and they stuck with me. It's common advice right? We hear it all the time. So, I had to find some new and interesting way to put out the same advice that others have been talking about for years, so I sought inspiration. I opened my laptop, I typed www.google.com into the address bar and then typed "business advice do what you love" in the magic search little search box in the middle of the screen. Do you know what happened? There were pages and pages of results. That I expected. What I didn't expect were the number of articles and blogs that popped up on my screen that said it was *gasp* TERRIBLE business advice! That was discouraging. Disheartening. Honestly... sad. So many of those blog posts calling it terrible advice were from young people! How is it that they have come to believe that doing what you love is not a realistic goal? :-/
Maybe it's not the wisest thing to do for me to sit here and try to tell you it's great advice despite so many opinions to the contrary. Then again, maybe it's stubborn, or just gutsy. ;-)
Look, the fact is that not everyone is an entrepreneur. Starting and growing your own business is risky. There is no job security, there are tons of challenges, and statistically most small businesses fail. Maybe "do what you love" is terrible advice for a young person who is just graduating from college, who has no savings or support and has a ton of student loans to pay off. Maybe it's not the right advice for everyone, but as professional photographers, as creatives, we are not just everyone. If you are rising to the challenge of owning your own business and being your own boss, then absolutely.... you need to DO WHAT YOU LOVE AND LOVE WHAT YOU DO! Steve Jobs said it himself, "The only way to do GREAT work is to love what you do". As a small business owner, the responsibilities are yours. So are the risks. The long hours. The expenses. You get the picture. At the beginning and end of every day, you will be more dedicated and happier despite all of those things if you are loving what you do! What does that mean to you as a photographer? It means SHOOT what you love! Don't shoot weddings if you are happier squeezing precious babies all day! Don't let someone convince there is more money to be earned in family portraiture if you really want to work with teens and seniors! Shoot what makes you happy and create what you love to create and you will create it better, gain more clients and be more successful!
Oh, and just in case you've ever wondered if The Shoppe team follows our own advice, what you'll see this week is that we do! Take a look at our newsletter. Browse around the blog. You'll see a whole new look. You'll sense a whole new feel. You'll be watching us move in a whole new direction and the reason? The Shoppe is taking it's own advice. You will see us DOING WHAT WE LOVE!
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