WORKING FOR FREE?
Do you feel like you are running a boudoir nonprofit? Does it feel as if your business is bringing IN a lot of money, but you still never seem to cut yourself a paycheck? Or are you like most photographers we talk to, who don’t even know WHAT their margins are, or whether they’re profitable at all?!
WHY YOU AREN’T MAKING ANY MONEY:
There could be SO many reasons why you’re not running a profitable boudoir business – here are just a few things that may apply to you:
*You’re running a business model that is simply not a good fit for you!
*You have too many staff members on your team, or maybe you need MORE help (ie, hiring an assistant or outsourcing your post-production).
*You don’t know EXACTLY what your cost of goods are (COG).
*You need to charge more for hair & makeup, or you need to find a new HMUA who will give you a better deal for your clients (less COG for you per client).
*Your monthly expenses are too high – maybe you don’t need that beautiful huge studio that costs thousands of $$ each month.
*You need to restructure your packages and what you offer in them – or change your pricing structure completely.
*You need to increase the value of your sessions (with things that won’t increase your COG too much).
IF YOU ARE CRINGING AT THESE QUESTIONS, DO NOT STOP READING – YOU PROBABLY NEED THIS!
I know, I know, we are artists, creatives at heart, and we love taking beautiful images. We didn’t get into this business to get bogged down in BUSINESS. We want to create and capture beauty!
But, reality check here folks: You are NOT running a boudoir nonprofit. If you aren’t making a profit, it’s time to make some changes to your business.
Please know that as we are writing this, we aren’t yelling at you. Think of this post as if we are sitting down to coffee – like we are your big sisters, and we’re just giving you a little sisterly advice, because we care about you and we BELIEVE in you. Also… we have been there too! It took us YEARS of trial & error, trying to figure out what pricing structure worked best for us, and creating a streamlined, profitable business model. So don’t be discouraged. Look at this as an opportunity to make some changes and create a plan to make some money and stop shooting for free!
1) Determine exactly what your operating costs are, and list them out in a spreadsheet (fixed expenses each month related to your business).
2) How much money do you want to make from your photography business (monthly/yearly salary)?
3) List out what your current boudoir packages are, and then write down the EXACT cost of goods with each one. Now you should be able to know – what is the actual PROFIT with each package?
4) How many boudoir shoots do you need to do each month in order to cover your expenses, AND give yourself a salary?
5) Are you hitting that goal # (from #4) each month? If so – you are running a SUCCESSFUL (ie, profitable) boudoir photography business – CONGRATS! If not – it’s time to rework some things to figure out how to make your business successful.
*Please note: This is a very simplified version of how we run our numbers and determine what needs to be reworked. If you want to continue this conversation with us, and you know that it would be helpful for you to learn more and dive deeper into pricing, business models, sales, products, etc, then we’d love to have you join us in our Boudoir Business Course.