5 Places Your Business Could Be Stealing Money From You
1. Working On Your Website – Your computer is the brain of your photography business. It’s used to do everything from prospecting to billing. Typically our website is the first interaction we have with the outside world and in order to keep it fresh and inviting it has to be maintained.
You can easily spend days updating photo galleries, testing links, adding mailing list capture forms to analyzing web stats and other time consuming tasks.
2. Answering Your Own Email – Nothing will rob you of billable hours than checking and answering emails. For many of us it’s the first thing we do everyday. So you can imagine that it doesn’t long before you realize that your whole day was shot reading, writing and sending emails.
3. Doing Your Own Photo Editing – Second to managing emails editing your own photos will definitely suck up an indefinite number of hours that you could be spent on income producing projects or prospecting new business.
4. Maintaining Your Blog – Blogging has become an invaluable tool for prospecting new business as well as maintaining relationships with current clients, vendors and prospects. You could spend hours setting up your blog, designing graphics, adding new posts, creating content and replying to posts.
5. Managing Your Own Mailing List & Following Up With Prospects – Whether it’s direct mail or email we all need a list of prospects that we can correspond with a regular basis. But if you spending your day designing our own graphics to send to the printer, printing mailing labels, running to the post office to purchase stamps, setting up your own email newsletters, auto responders and such you won’t have much time or energy to work on your business.
Now I realize that you may be thinking that all the things I listed above is working “on” your business, but I’m here to tell you they aren’t. As a matter of fact if you haven’t closed any business, or made any direct contacts for meetings, ‘your’ secretarial skills is not working for your photography business.
5 Ways to Turn Things Around So You Can Run A More Profitable Business
1. Stop Yourself Throughout The Day, Take Notice & Apply The Acid Test – The next time you’re answering email for example, stop for a moment and ask yourself “Is this task actually making me money”, in other words is this an income producing activity or could this be delegated to someone else?
2. Make A List Of Current Tasks – Go through your day and make a list of things that you blindly work on and apply the acid test to those tasks. Ask yourself, “could I hire someone to do this for me?”
3. Hire Help – Once you’re clear on what you can delegate go about the process of hiring a personal assistant -or- sometimes referred to, as the Virtual Assistant is basically a personal assistant who doesn’t actually report to your office. As a matter of fact they may not even live in the same city.
Virtual assistants can be hired for as little or as much time as you need, they are not staff employees so there are no records to maintain and you’re not obligated to use them monthly. Only hire assistants, as you need.
4. Be Clear About What You Need & What You Expect – Any assistant is only as good as your ability clarify what you need from them.