When you start in business often you are trying to figure out how you can get business and keep in front of the competition. You try every trick in the book and work on getting your name out there as much as possible. Then like me you get to a point where you look back in your business and realize that doing a good job with the right equipment is the real secret to winning over the customers. You’re providing value for your customer.
To provide that value to clients you need to have the resources to do so and many times those resources have to be purchased before a client is paying you. I have found in my business that even small investments can be a huge gain in getting clients. In the caricature business many artists will complete the drawing and roll it up and hand it to the customer. Doing the transaction that way it may save you money as all you need are rubber bands. The problem is that the paper is subject to the elements, there is nowhere to offer a business card, and no one else can see the drawing. Whenever I buy something I like to get it put in a bag, it completes the purchase. When I started my caricature business I purchased clear plastic sleeves for the artwork to give to the customer. It protects the drawing from moisture, I am able to put a business card in each bag for future business, and it lays flat so others can see the drawing and will come and get their own. Now the bags are about 50-75 cents a piece but they have paid for themselves in business from a marketing standpoint and set me ahead of other artists that don’t offer the bags. A small but big investment. Recently I purchased new video equipment for our business. My older gear was about eight years old and it was getting tough to keep up with the demand of our business as we forge ahead in the video market. We invested and worked on securing a new client that will now pay for the equipment over time.
Investing in yourself is equally important. I get people all the time that call me for information or to “pick my brain” as they say. I don’t mind if they have done their homework first and just want another opinion. If they are calling because they don’t feel like doing work and want me to provide the answers then they haven’t done the work. Read about the topic, listen to podcasts, watch videos, go to seminars, invest in yourself. It doesn’t matter whether you are trying to improve your business, start a new service, or learn an instrument, you have to invest the time or money to learn what you need to know. Remember that saying,”Give a man a fish you feed him once, teach a man to fish and you feed him forever!”
We talk about investing in yourself on the Cashing in on Creativity Podcast in the month of August. We start off by talking about investing in your business on episode 141 and move into investing in yourself in episodes 142-145. If you enjoy music we talk to some young musicians about how they got started in music and round it out with a truck driver that is working on being an actor on how he finds time to audition for roles with a busy career on the road. You can find all these episodes at www.cashinginoncreativitypodcast.com
Don’t be afraid to invest in you, your career, or your business. Not only will it pay for itself over time but you will learn so much about the topic that you may not have thought of before. I know investing in our business has helped it be successful over the years and it will for you too. Good luck!
About the Author
Bruce Outridge is an artist, author, podcast host / producer, host of the Inspiring Youth television show, and professional speaker on creating content. He has a passion for helping people find their talents and building successful careers and businesses. You can learn more about Bruce and all his work at www.bruceoutridge.com