You own a small one photographer photography business. The photography industry is competitive. Yet, thanks to your hard work, creativity and tenacity, your business has continued to grow. You love your business. However, you love your family more and would like to increase your income while reducing your workload. The growth of the business is what will increase your income; but how do you chart a path to sustainable growth? One key to consider when answering this question is to determine your core competency. The following are some examples of how your core competencies can influence your growth.
1. Core Competency: Processing. Are you able to fly through the processing of your images? Are other photographers amazed at both the quality of your images and your turn around time? If this describes you then processing images is probably one of the core competencies of your business. You likely already have numerous automated batch processes and short-cuts in place. You likely also have solid computer and networking (computer) skills.
One possible growth path for someone in this situation is performing the processing for other photographers. Scripts, Actions and Networks can be extended to other computers. A streamlined process can be documented. Relatively unskilled help can run the simple part of the process. That unskilled help can access the computer with all its scripts from anywhere in the world through remote access computing (thus a photographer can hire from any low wage area of the world). Scale will bring efficiencies which allow for competitive pricing. Daily improvements in the process will increase margins. The model is almost unlimitedly scalable.
2. Core Competency: Marketing. Do you consistently have more customers than do your competitors? Would unbiased observers when comparing your product side by side with some of your less busy competitors say your work is comparable? If this is the case it is likely you have a core competency in photography marketing.
A person with this core competency can easily expand by providing a marketing service for other photographers. This service would be scalable (there are an awful lot of talented photographers who are not getting sufficient business. For example, if you are getting most of your business from your website because you have done some search engine optimization work on your website and you rank high on relevant keywords on Google, you can provide this service to photographers throughout the country.
There are a number of avenues in which a photography business can grow. One factor to consider when creating a growth plan is the photographer’s core competencies.