We're in the thick of February already, but we thought it was about time to check in on your 2016 goals for your creative business. We know how it goes-- you have lofty dreams and goals in January and by February, they're long forgotten. Or maybe you didn't even dream up any goals. Either is understandable, but today we're going to give you a few simple goals you, as a creative entrepreneur, can work to achieve this year.
1. Set up all your social media accounts, making sure you have the same handle across the board if possible.
2. Improve your Client Experience. Here are a few tips to get started:
- Set up email templates so when you get an inquiry, you have a preexisting system in place so communication is streamlined. Check out our shop for helpful downloads that will walk you through the initial email process. We have one specific to Weddings and Interior Design.
- Create Client Homework. As an interior designer myself, before I start with a client, I have them answer a long list of questions about their style, needs and wants. For photographers like Ashley, she has her clients fill out wedding day timelines, vendor information, family photo information, etc.
- Think of a few things you can do for your clients that will make your business special and stand out. Maybe sending them a welcome gift, packaging their wedding photos in a beautiful way, gifting your clients something nice for their home once you wrap the design process, sending them a holiday gift, etc.
3. Outsource. Is there a task within your business you can delegate to someone more qualified? Is there a task that you don't feel adequate at completing that perhaps you could pay someone else to do better? Outsourcing economizes on your time and sets you up for success by trusting someone else more suited for a specific task. Maybe you need to hire a book keeper, a graphic designer, an external printer, someone to manage your editorial calendar, etc. Whatever the case may be, we cannot do everything or be everything to everyone.
4. Get featured. Whether you're an interior designer, event stylist, planner, photographer, calligrapher, florist, or the like, make a goal to see your work featured on a reputable wedding blog or magazine. This will help get your name out there to a new sea of potential clients, it will increase your confidence and help build your portfolio.
5. Work with someone new. It's easy to feel comfortable with the people, vendors and artists you work with all the time-- we understand they are tried and true! However, magic happens when different creatives come together to spur each other on to new ideas. Perhaps it's time to plan a styled shoot, execute a new collection with someone who's not in your exact creative field, or ask someone new to guest blog for you. The benefits to this are two fold. First, you'll get the obvious benefit of expanding your horizons and networking with someone new. Second, you'll create cross traffic between the new vendors and friends and hopefully gain some new clients or followers.
6. Try something new. We believe a well-rounded creative skill set is very important, which is why we offer many hands-on classes at our workshops. If you're a photographer, perhaps trying your hand at floral arranging will help you approach your own work in a new light or at a different angle. Getting out of our own creative lane for a day and trying something new can have amazing repercussions!
7. Legitimize your business by obtaining an LLC or Sole Proprietorship.
8. Create a mission statement and stick to it! If you already have a mission statement, maybe it's time to revisit it and see if what it says is still what your business is all about. It's important to maintain a solid foundation to your business, and this is one of the best ways to do that!
9. Attend a seminar, workshop, or online course to further your education.
10. Simplify. If you are doing too many things, have too many aspects to your business, or hold too many offerings, maybe it's time to trim down that list. The last thing you want are for potential clients and followers to be confused by what you do. And if you're overwhelmed and confused, they probably will be too. If you try to reach everyone and do all the things, you'll end up reaching no one at all.
What are some business goals YOU have this year? Get our templates in our shop here by clicking on the template you want to download.