Yes!  I am ready to Break Into a New Market

Relocating a Business as a Military Spouse

You Have to Move . . .

As a military spouse, moving, is a part of military life. But moving a business isn’t as easy as moving a household of kiddos. You feel like nobody’s in your corner and you don’t have the answers. In today’s blog post, we’re going to share with you our top five tips to rapidly relocate your business. It’s the same tips that we have used to move our business five times in ten years.

Have Your Orders in Hand

Guys, I cannot stress this enough that you have to have your orders in hand. You cannot do anything else with your business until you know for certain that you’re actually going to move. It’s happened to us before, where we thought we were going one place and we ended up in another. It would stink to go ahead and put all that effort into getting your business prepped, ready to go to a new duty station and region, only to find out a month later whoops the military messed up or they told you wrong and you’re not actually going to Hawaii, instead you’re going to Antarctica. Yay! So wait until you have orders in hand, period.

Communicate with Your Clients

Let your clients know you’re moving. Why? Because what if you start putting it out on social media that you are going to rock that market in Anchorage, Alaska, and you currently live in Savannah, and your clients that have paid you to cover their wedding or photograph their baby shower see that on social media, but haven’t heard a word about that move from you? They’re going to be ticked off. So go ahead, shoot them an e-mail, let them know before you start posting it all over the inter web. 

** Now, if you are super excited about that move to Hawaii or wherever it may be, write yes below in the comments, let me know that you’re excited about your move.

Reach out to Your Community

Go ahead and start reaching out to your community, but not more than six months ahead of time. Why? Because … really for two reasons … One, if you reach out to this new community more than six months ahead of time, they’re going to think that you’re probably fake, that you’re not actually going to move to the place you’re saying you’re going to move to, and they start kind of acting like, “Yeah, sure, uh-huh. Whatever”. They will then write you off. The other reason you want to wait until your six months out from a move is because that’s a lot of work and it creates a lot of confusion. So wait! Six months is the optimal time to start making that switch.

Find Local Professional Organizations

I want you to go ahead and find local professional organizations in the new place that you’re going to and start joining the. Begin networking with them and start social media interactions with them. Why? Because, they’re going to know your new location better than anyone else. Those are your people. That’s going to be your tribe, your community, and honestly your source of referrals.

So start doing that now, and let me know … If you’ve already done that research, tell me which organization you are super excited to be a part of in the comments below.

Reach out to Past Clients

Lastly, I want you to reach out to your past clients for referrals in your new area. However, before you do, guys, you better make sure you’ve done all the other steps first.

This may seem like a “gimme”, an easy one to do, and in some ways it is, but if you do this one first you’re going to have some angry clients, so make sure you follow the process. Don’t mess with the recipe guys.

Here’s why: This whole sixth degree of separation. You have a client where you currently live right now, but they probably know five or six people in your new duty station, in the new place you’re moving to. So talk to them, let them know how much you’ve loved working with them, and ask them if they have friends that would love working with you in your new duty station. It is a quick and fast way to start building referrals and booking clients in your new place.

Alright guys, now you have our top five tips for getting ready to move your business even before you move your house, but what about networking, SEO, social media? There’s so much more, right?

So, we have something for you for reading to the end of this post. Click on the link below to get our free PCS checklist to get you going, get you on track, ready to roll into your new duty station with your strong, ready to go business. 

DOWNLOAD OUR FREE BUSINESS PCS CHECKLIST

Questions

I want to thank you so much for spending time with us today. As a final thought, I want you to leave a comment below about our final question:

WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST FEAR IN MOVING YOUR BUSINESS?

SUBSCRIBE TO OUR YOUTUBE COMMUNITY

Let’s Stay Connected

I hope you have enjoyed this post. Do you want to dive deeper into how to be successful in new markets or are relocating your business and need some help? Come join our course Break into a New Market.

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How to Make a Blog Content Calendar

Content creation guide for blogging and free downloadHow to Make a Content Calendar for Your Blog

As we head into the New Year, you are probably taking the time to review your business and might, like many others realize that you desperately need to blog but you HATE to write.  I totally get it.

Content Creation Sucks

Creating weekly content for your business can seem like a drag but trust me when I say it makes a huge difference.  It is one of the key cornerstones we use to restart and relocate my photography business rapidly.  If you’re still not a hundred percent convinced then check back next week when we delve more into the why of blogging and SEO as it pertains to rapidly relocating your creative business.  For now though, let’s just get those content calendars started.

Seasonal Topics for Your Content Calendar

As you lay out your content calendar for your blog, start first with any seasonal promotions you may want to highlight or blog posts that may tie into what your ideal client may be walking through during that time of year.

An example of this would be directly targeting engagement season if you are a wedding photographer.  That season typically runs from November through February with forty percent of all engagements occurring during that very short window of time.  For that reason, I would want to push all of my content for the year regarding engagements during that time.

Client Specific Content for Your Calendar

The next piece of the puzzle you need to attack within your content calendar is anything related to a client.  For example, if you are hosting a bridal shower at your venue in two months, you want to block off time in your calendar to highlight that event a few weeks later on the blog.

Not only does this make your client feel valued but it also shows future potential clients that your venue is actively booking clients and is sought after as a place to host events.

Without sharing that content regularly on the blog, your market may assume you have gone out of business.  This blogging tactic is also highly important if you are working to be found in a new market due to relocation.

Leverage Social Media and FAQ’s

If you still are struggling to find things to blog about or you have yet to book clients then let Google and social media help you out.  Start thinking like your ideal client and use your blog to answer their most frequently asked questions.  Those questions point to a fear or concern your client has.  Go be the hero and alleviate those fears with a great blog post.

Expand Your Topics

What the heck is topic expansion? Here it is in a simple nutshell.  Do your clients worry about what to wear, then create a series on that.  Are your brides stressed about the timeline of the day, then answer that in a four part thematic blog all about those exact fears.

We had a frequently asked question about what shoes we wear on a wedding day.  So we went ahead and answered that, but then we had such an overwhelming response about our blog on Tieks versus Rothy’s  that we’re now creating additional topics. Additional topic expansions on how to size them, how to wash them, which ones we liked better.

Now Make it Official

Someone said a goal without a plan is just a dream.  While you may have created an amazing list of blog ideas, they won’t actually happen or ever get written if you don’t make a plan to execute them.  Pull out a calendar or your client management system and start plugging in these topics to your calendar on what days you want them to go live.

Make sure that as you plug these ideas into your content calendar that you are being realistic.  If you have never blogged before or hate doing it then give yourself some grace and don’t schedule more than three a month to begin with.  Still lost on what to write?  Check our download HERE for some ideas to get you started.

Let’s Stay Connected

I hope you have enjoyed this post. Do you want to dive deeper into how to be successful in new markets or are relocating your business and need some help? Come join our course Break into a New Market.

Follow us through social media:

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– Join ourTwitter discussion

Best Tips for In Person Sales

Selling albums and top tips for in person sales in photographyIn Person Sales

In person sales has gotten a bad rap in the world of photography over the last few years as photographers have increasingly had the opinion that selling things feels icky.  I get it!  I hate being sold to, however, I love when a company takes good care of me.  You know those companies that take care of the things you didn’t even know you needed help with . . . those are the companies I love and we try to emulate.  Now imagine if in person sales were that way for photography.

Educate Ahead of Time

In order for in person sales to be successful, you must educate your client ahead of time.  Expecting them to show up to the sales session without ever seeing your pricing is like throwing a lit powered keg at a tiger’s butt, disastrous and stupid.

Create an Inviting Space

An in person sales session is not a Tupperware party so don’t treat it like one.  This is a high end experience which means your clients should feel relaxed and comfortable in your space.  Make it inviting as you consider what it smells, looks, and feels like.

Have a Clear Agenda

Have a clearly laid out agenda for your in person sales session is crucial.  Practice ahead of time and stick to a natural flow of presenting the images to your client.  In doing this you respect their time and they don’t leave feeling like they wasted a ton of time.

Follow the 80/20 Rule

Make sure that throughout the sales session you are following the 80/20 rule.  This simply means you let your client talk eighty percent of the time which can be really hard to do when you are not confident about what you or selling or your process.  Again, practicing letting others talk will make you a better servant of your clients needs.  It allows you to actually hear what their pain points are and how you can help them.

Prepare for Objections

Any objection you encounter during an in person sales session is a direct barrier to a sale.  You must be prepared to respond to objections in a way that solves your clients problem and leads them through the purchasing process to a final decision.  Noticed, I didn’t say sale.  In person sales is not about minimum purchases or icky sales tactics but about understanding your clients concerns and needs and finally solving them.

 

Let’s stay connected

I hope you have enjoyed this post. Do you want to dive deeper into how to be successful in new markets or are relocating your business and need some help? Come join our course Break into a New Market.

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5 Tips for Updating Branding

how to update your branding with a photoshootUpdating Branding

As we head into a new year, it is always a great time to update your branding through new photos from a branding shoot.  This is especially important if you have changed your logo, hair, added glasses, or altered your logo colors.  Updating your branding images, gives you new and fresh content to post.  So how do you go about updating your branding?  Below are our top 5 tips for updating branding.

It Must be Well Defined

Before ever embarking on a creating an updating branding shoot you must first make sure that your brand is well defined.  If it isn’t or you aren’t crystal clear about who you are serving, you will end up creating a shoot that falls flat or does nothing to communicate who you are and what you do.

Find the Right Photographer

There are some amazing photographers out there and just like any industry, there are some so so ones.  You want to first make sure that the photographer you are hiring can shoot for your brand and the work they produce aligns with it.  Secondly, make sure that your photographer is an active participant in the process to make sure they understand the story and type of marketing images you will need.

Commercial Copyright Release

As you search for a photographer for your branding shoot, the biggest legal consideration is that of a commercial copyright release.  This is a little less strict than a general copyright release that most portrait photographers will give you.  A commercial release will allow for you to overlay text and use the images to advertise your business, something vital when it comes to a strong branding shoot.

Location, Location

After you have completed the first three steps, make sure that you pick a good location for your branding images.  Location choice needs to be discussed with the photographer. This insures that the place you pick aligns with your branding colors.  Make sure you also check with the owner of the place before showing up. Some locations require a rental fee or permit.

What to Wear

Lastly, as you prepare for your branding session you need to make sure that what you wear is also in line with your brand.  Consider that you have spent all this time planning for your session only to have what you are wearing not fit with the rest of the shoot.  If you need help with this, might I suggest a service like Trunk Club or Stitch Fix to help find the right pieces for you.

Let’s stay connected

I hope you have enjoyed this post. Do you want to dive deeper into how to be successful in new markets or are relocating your business and need some help? Come join our course Break into a New Market.

Follow us through social media:

– Subscribe to our newsletter

– Join to our private Facebook page for special live content

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– Join ourTwitter discussion

Why is SEO Important for Relocating a Business

Why is set important to growing your businessWhy is SEO important for Relocation

I am sure by now you have heard that SEO is important for growing your business but did you know that SEO is equally as important for relocating a business.  As you face relocation in your business, you no doubt have noticed that your are in some ways literally starting your business over from scratch.  SEO has the power to leverage the work you have already done in order to help you rapidly grow.

SEO Puts You in Front of New Clients

Imagine something so powerful that it can put you in front of a network you have never been a part of, that is the power of SEO to get you in front of new clients.  Each time we relocate, we have started the behind the scenes work early with SEO, in order to be found and get booked by new ideal clients.

Allows You to Move into New Markets

Even if you aren’t facing a relocation of your business, SEO allows you to move into new markets without having to physically relocate your business into a new area.  Through the right keywords and topics for blogging, you can show up in front of ideal clients in new markets.

SEO Can Increase Revenue

The number of clients you book is often in portion to the number of inquiries you get. More inquiries means more clients which then means increased revenue.  When we first started implementing SEO correctly into our website, blog, and social media we saw our revenue shoot up by seventy-seven percent.  So, the question is, have I convinced you yet of the need for SEO?  If you are wanting more information on how to use it and why then head to the Youtube video below for some extra bits of information.

Let’s stay connected

I hope you have enjoyed this post. Do you want to dive deeper into how to be successful in new markets or are relocating your business and need some help? Come join our course Break into a New Market.

Follow us through social media:

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Why You Need to Attend Conferences

why attend a conferenceWhy You Need to Attend Conferences

Why should we attend conferences? I mean, you just spend money to sit there and not really learn anything. If this has been your past experience with conferences, then you are probably going to the wrong conferences. In this post I hope to show you the benefits of going to conferences in and outside of your industry.

Networking

This is the #1 reason to go to a conference, PERIOD. You have hundreds or thousands of people meeting in one place. This presents a great opportunity to get to know them face to face and build relationships. Every conference I attend, I make it a point to introduce myself to the instructors and exchange personal contact information. Over the years, I have built a huge network of people I actively rely on for advice, services, or support. Without this network, I can honestly say my business would not be as far along as it is.

Learn New Skills and See New Tech

Usually at conferences there are always two things; education and vendors. The classes are generally taught by very knowledgeable instructors who are leaders in the area they are teaching. When selecting your classes, I always recommend classes that are higher than your level and at least one class outside of your comfort zone to challenge you. It also helps to select subject areas that you feel you are weak in. To help with that, read our blog post on SWOT. 

The other aspect is the numerous vendors that show off products. This helps to keep us informed about new technology or products happening in our industry. Sometimes the vendors will have exclusive show deals that bundle or severely discount products they are selling. To help prevent you from buying something that is “new and shiny” that you don’t need, we recommend you refer back to your SWOT and see if that product will make you life better or will help to overcome a weakness or a threat.

Keep up to Date With Current Trends

Let’s face it, no one is an expert at marketing. Some people are very good but no one is an expert. By going to conferences you have the real potential to learn about market trends all over the country. You can hear what market campaigns are working and what are not. What social media platforms and strategies are working and so on. Learning these trends will put you leaps and bounds ahead of your competition. 

If you liked this content and want to dive in more, ensure you watch our You Tube video and leave a comment with your opinions of conferences:

Let’s stay connected

I hope you have enjoyed this post. Do you want to dive deeper into how to be successful in new markets or are relocating your business and need some help? Come join our course Break into a New Market.

Follow us through social media:

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How to Make a Great Youtube Channel | Trena Little

How to Make a Great Youtube Channel

Want to make great Youtube content but have NO CLUE how to get started?  This month for our guest interview we brought on Trena Little.  Trena is a Youtube expert dedicated to making your channel the best it can be. I met her when we hosted a local workshop coordinated and sponsored by the Alabama Wedding and Event Professionals (ALWEP). She was so much fun to hang out with that we had to have her back on our private facebook group monthly interview.

Clear Audience

One of the biggest points Trena made was that you have to have a clear and concise audience defined as you make your videos.  For example, her channel is specifically for the creative business owner looking to grow a youtube channel.  Being specific really does matter when trying to grow your channel. 

Video is King in SEO

Video is really important when ranking for SEO. We have a great blog on this exact subject that will dive deeper on why video is so important. Google values video above all else and guess who owns youtube, GOOGLE. So if you have videos on youtube and you put them in a blog post or other part of your website, Google will see it and like it all that much more.  . . and then share it in a higher page ranking because of it.

Content Suggestions

Trena dove into how to pick and create a content strategy.  After you get your audience down to a science you have to pick what you will talk about. One of the best things she says to do is look at your competition. Look at their most popular videos and try to create one that is similar to theirs or touches on the same subject in a different way. This way you can ride or get some of the same traffic.

This is just a little portion of the interview and believe me the tips only get better. For the full interview click on the link below and subscribe to our youtube channel for more content every week.

If you want to find out more about Trena Little you can check out her website or her youtube channel for more great content.

Let’s stay connected

I hope you have enjoyed this post. Do you want to dive deeper into how to be successful in new markets or are relocating your business and need some help? Come join our course Break into a New Market.

Follow us through social media:

– Subscribe to our newsletter

– Join to our private Facebook page for special live content

– Subscribe to our YouTube channel. 

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New Year Business Planning | Part 2

Mission and Vision StatementNew Year Planning | Part 2

If you missed the first part of our series, make sure you go back and read part 1. The next part of our planning for the new year process takes us to look at our Mission and Vision Statements.  This may sound like a pointless thing to do but it will give you a sound direction when going forward with your plan.

Mission Statement 

A mission statement tells the “why” of your business. This gives it purpose and meaning. Customers don’t necessarily buy because of your product, they buy because of why you sell it. Having a purpose can greatly influence the direction your company is heading. As part of planning for the new year, look at your mission statement and see if it matches up with the reason of why you do what you do. Often, a mission statement can change due to a change in direction, If you find that you don’t have a mission statement, I would advise you create your own.  The website BPlans  has a great article with a five step process for how to do it.

Vision Statement

A vision statement can be summed up in that it “reveals, at the highest levels, what an organization most hopes to be and achieve in the long term” (business news daily). Think of it as your long term goal or what you want your company to be. This weaves a lot of your values and direction into one sentence. A good example is Walt Disney’s vision “to make people happy”.  Short concise and to the point. Mission provides purpose while your vision provides more direction. Look at your vision statement and think about what you want your business to look like in 5-10 years. For more insight into building a vision statement, check out this article. 

Application

So you have looked over your mission and vision statement and finally have them aligned with where you want to take your company, but now what? Take these statement and pin them up in your office where you will see them every day. Then as you are planning, always keep these in the front of your mind. A good way to keep yourself on track is to ask these two questions when looking at any plan for a new year; will this help my mission, and does this reflect my business in 5-10 years?

Let’s stay connected

I hope you have enjoyed this post. Do you want to dive deeper into how to be successful in new markets or are relocating your business and need some help? Come join our course Break into a New Market.

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– Join to our private Facebook page for special live content

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Legal Considerations for Branding Shoots

Branding shoot photographyLegal Considerations for a Branding Shoot

Branding shoots are all the craze right now and if you think about it, why shouldn’t they be? Look at the benefits they can give, from instagram photos to website images and photos for marketing campaigns. The list of reasons goes on (for a deeper look at the benefits look at our previous blog post).  They provide so much benefit and the upfront cost is very minimal compared to the benefits.  Before you make the choice to offer personal branding shoots, you really need to consider a few legal matters.

*DISCLAIMER: I am not a lawyer, this is just my two cents based on experience*

Copyright

As photographers, we live and die by our copyright. It is the piece of paper that allows us to advertise and protect our work. Usually for non-corporate photographers (such as wedding or family), they will keep the copyright and the client gets a print release so they can print photos without needing constant permission. In branding photography, it is a little different, the client usually will want a limited copyright or commercial use agreement. This allows the client to use images how they see fit on their website, marketing campaigns, and other business related advertising. Take a look at examples from Pinterest. The client can’t keep on coming back to the photographer to ask for permission to use their images, so they structure this agreement to give them more flexibility and latitude. Above all, as the photographer, you will still keep the copyright.

The Right to Manipulate

One of the hardest things to get use to is that for personal branding sessions, some clients will want or need the ability to manipulate their photos.  This is a hard thing to get over especially if you are in the non-corporate world. You cherish those images and the thought of someone messing with them or adding filters makes you feel queasy sometimes. In branding photography, you have to give this up. The client will have to manipulate their images to fit their marketing campaign or website format. It is unrealistic to ask them to come back to us every time.

Marketing for Business

You client is going to want to use the images to market and make money. Make sure to address any monetary considerations in your contract and ensure you know how the client will use your images. This is very important because you don’t want your images being used in something that could be considered morally or ethically wrong. To get a really good base contract online, we recommend Rachel Brenk at the Law Tog.

Let’s stay connected

I hope you have enjoyed this post. Do you want to dive deeper into how to be successful in new markets or are relocating your business and need some help? Come join our course Break into a New Market.

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It Takes Discipline to Run a Business

It Takes Discipline to Run a Business

Have you ever looked at some people and wonder why they can get more done in a day. Have you ever looked at a competitor that just moved in and wondered how they get popular so quickly? I have one word for you to answer both of these… Discipline. In this post I will share my top suggestion for how to bring more disciple into your business.

Wake up early

One of the top things fortune 500 company CEO’s and other famous people is waking up early. It gets a jumpstart to your day and gives you an edge to everyone else. I personally wake up at 5:30AM because all of my kid are asleep and I can get some initial things done before they get up. If you look at my feed on IG, you may see us posting at that time to.

Hold your Standard

Some people may think this sounds weird but this comes in clutch when you become really busy. Sometimes we get so busy that our standards fall as we begin to focus on other priorities. The question should be do I respect my business enough to hold this standard? iIf you do then you will find the extra time or burn the midnight oil to ensure your standard does not fall. If you find yourself staying up late a lot… it might be a time to outsource.

Embrace your Weaknesses

Weaknesses can sometimes be our greatest strengths. They allow us to focus on something we are not goo dat and make it better. While it may be easier to embrace your strengths, it is better to embrace your weaknesses. When you embrace your weakness, you are acknowledging them and working to make them your strengths. This takes a lot of humility but will really help you in the end to be a better person and business owner.

Find the conclusion to this post by watching the youtube video Discipline to business success .

Let’s stay connected

I hope you have enjoyed this post. Do you want to dive deeper into how to be successful in new markets or are relocating your business and need some help? Come join our course Break into a New Market.

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Hello & Welcome

Exhausted from trying to break into a new market and have no idea what needs to be done to keep your creative business growing?  You are in the right place, friend!

The Restart Specialist was born out of our constant nomadic life and the search for answers on relocating a business without fear. I am so excited your here. Pull up a chair, settle in with a good cup of coffee and lets get started.

  

  

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