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Questions & Answers

Posted by Sergio David Spadavecchia on 2016-02-28 15:17:00
Title: Freelance or partnership?
Category: Marketing

Hi guys I'm Sergio and I had more than once the idea of stepping up my game by getting partners on board. I had more than one proposal for partnering up with bigger companies, but so far everything is going great and I'm wondering if it can go better by expanding my company. In a photography business what is your best advice: A) to stay small and no overhead dealing with everything, from sales to creative to photography, editing, accounting, social media, etc etc. ...or B) search for partners and try to land bigger clients and bigger gigs with a bigger company?

Answer:

Fix My Biz
2016-03-09 12:27:00

Hi Sergio,

You say that everything is “going great” by operating as a small shop, but wonder if bigger means better. What a good “problem” to have! One of the things about entrepreneurship that still excites us is the ability to make our own choices about how we want to work.

So let’s start with your motivations: What attracted you to working for yourself in the first place? Did you have a vision for what you wanted the company to be? Did you want to be in charge of the kind of work you do? Do you enjoy being the chief cook and bottle washer? Basically, what did you want out of this experience?

We often caution our clients about entering partnerships. It is crucial to look at what your partner can bring to the table, and to ask yourself whether your partner truly possesses skills you don’t have, or access to a network you can’t reach. You need to be extremely specific about what you need your partner to do for you and crystal clear on what you expect to achieve as a result of that partnership.

Next, let’s look at the numbers: You say that you currently have no overhead. Biggers clients and bigger gigs mean bigger money – but what do you have to invest to get there? You’ll have to run the numbers on what your company looks like if you have to assume overhead, or split revenue with your partner. We don’t want to see you work to increase your revenue only to realize that the bottom line remains the same. Have a look at the costs associated with expansion to make sure the business model still makes sense.

Finally, we suggest that you think about where your skills are best used. If you’re great at sales and photography, maybe you can make more money by outsourcing the “time sucks” of any small business – administration, accounting, social media. If you can free up your time to do what you’re best at, that could be a way to expand while still maintaining control.

Good luck!

Amy & Danielle