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Sunday, April 5, 2009

Learn How To Make Money With Your Camera - At The Movies!

By Dan Eitreim

If you've ever dreamed of starting your own photography business, there are a few things you need to do.

Clearly, you will need to study photography. You need at least some skill, but not nearly as much as you might think. It is possible to earn a very comfortable living, just by being competent.

To achieve success, your knowledge of marketing in general and specifically how to find people to buy your photos is far more important. It may seem surprising, but you can learn a lot of good marketing tips at the movies.

"Hello Dolly" was one of the longest-running Broadway plays ever. It was made into a movie in 1968, starring Barbra Streisand. (This was likely before most of you were born.) It's one of my favorite movies and a terrific source of marketing training.

In this movie, Dolly Levi, is an entrepreneur. She has tons of businesses. Whenever she runs into anyone who has any sort of need, she instantly gives them a business card promoting one of her businesses. One that specializes in that exact area.

Throughout the entire movie, this is a running gag.

Dolly Levi taught me two valuable marketing lessons.

First, pass out your business cards! If no one knows you are around, how can they call? Dolly must have passed out over a hundred business cards before the opening credits finished. How many do you pass out? If you aren't going through at least a thousand cards a month - you aren't even trying!

Second, when asked why she ran so many businesses, she replied; "If you have to live from hand to mouth, you'd best be ambidextrous."

Of course I don't want you to run out and start a bunch of businesses. But, in our photography, how many of us keep doing the same sorts of photos day in and day out. There are literally hundreds of different photography markets out there, take the time to discover a few new ones, and how to sell to them. As you branch out, you'll start to see the money rolling in.

Finally, you'll have enough money to ____________. I'll let you fill in the blank, there must be some sort or reason why you want to have your own photography business. Then, get off your duff and go for it. It's a lot easier than you may imagine.

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