Ok, for some, the sentence “The year has not yet ended…” may make them cringe as they really wish to bid 2020 farewell. Well, I get it. What a decade this year has been, right? At least it feels like that.
I know that a new year brings a new hope, a chance to flip the page and to start over. But, like it or not, this year is not over yet.
I want to invite you to look at the last few days we have left in 2020 as an opportunity to wrap up what we could easily call a bad year, as “The year I reached clarity and created an action plan to make my dreams come true”. (Phew, lots of words, but they will make sense in a second, I promise!)
How about instead of wishing and hoping we get to January 1st by tomorrow, we use this time to achieve clarity for 2021 and create a roadmap to make things happen next year?
Yes, we still have time! So let’s make a plan together!
Why is this step so important and why should you never skip it? Simply put, because without knowing where you want to go you’ll never know when you arrive (or how to get there, for instance).
In our businesses it’s fundamental that we have clarity, that we know *exactly* what we want so we can start working hard to make the needle move in the right direction.
You may say “yes, I know what I want. I want to be a wedding photographer”. This is great, you have figured out the 1st step. But from there, how can you be more specific?
- What type of wedding photographer do you want to be?
- What type of offerings will your business have?
- How many weddings do you want/need to shoot per year?
- How much income do you need to cover your business expenses?
- How much do you need to charge in order to make a profit?
- Do you want to be a wedding photographer full-time or part-time
- Who’s your Ideal Client?
As you can see, even when we narrow down our niche in the photography industry, we still need to dig a little deeper in order to know what type of business we want to grow.
Stop everything you are doing and let’s do a quick exercise.
Close your eyes and imagine your life as a successful wedding photographer. Spend a few minutes taking it all in. Pay attention to the details you see and the feelings they bring…
- Where are you at when you see yourself being successful?
- Who’s there with you?
- What type of weddings are you shooting?
- Who are the clients you’re working with?
- What can you and your family do with the income from your success?
Now grab a piece of paper and write it all down. Make sure to also write down how you felt when you saw yourself as a successful wedding photographer.
Creating a Roadmap for the New Year
Ok, now you have the dream written down. How do you make it come true?
When we are driving to a new destination, a place we haven’t yet been, the first thing we do is to make sure we have the correct address and a GPS, a map, to help us get there.
Knowing where we are going is achieving Clarity. But to drive to our destination we need an action plan, we need the Roadmap!
- Can we get to our destination without stopping for gas?
- Can we find a gas station on the way, if we need one?
- Do we need cash for tolls?
You get the idea… we don’t only need to know where we’re going, we need to know how to get there!
So now let’s grab your paper again…
Let’s say you wrote down: “I want to work with southern brides who are family oriented and are getting married at a barn. I want to have a business that allows me to work from home and I need to make $40k/ year to make this happen”.
Now let’s break it down to create your Roadmap
- What’s the minimum I need to charge to cover my cost of doing business and to add a profit margin?
- To make $40k a year, how many weddings do I need to book at that price point?
- Who’s my ideal bride (Be specific. If you need extra help, download my free guide “How to Identify your Ideal Client” – Get yours HERE)
- What are the 3 top venues where my dream brides are getting married?
- What medium should I focus on in order to attract my dream bride? (Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Google, etc… I suggest you focus on just one to start!)
- How can my offerings speak to my dream client?
Write down your answers.
When you’re done with your rough copy, grab your planner and transform your roadmap into a SMART goal. (If you don’t know what that is or need extra help, check out this article by Tony Robbins.)
I cannot stress enough the importance of making your roadmap a clear SMART goal… Go ahead, do it!!!
Now you know exactly where you’re going and how you’re going to get there. You have actionable steps, deadlines, measurable and achievable ways to make your dream come true in 2021.
I’ll be here cheering you on and of course available to help you to become the best wedding photographer you can be!
Cheers to 2020… because we still have a chance to make good use of what’s left of it!
And here’s to 2021… a year of new hope, clarity, hard work and dreams come true!
Now, go ahead and make it happen!!!
For extra resources, check out my coaching offerings for photographers HERE