For instance, in the last year, our studio changed many of the ways we market to and find customers...and what we sell to them. We have changed more in the last twelve months than we did in the previous twenty-seven years. Some of these changes were brought on by technology, some by the changing marketplace.
Education reflects these changes, too. Years ago, most photography conventions' programming was heavily geared towards lighting and posing, offering little in regards to business and marketing. In fact, when business and marketing programs were offered, the attendance was very low. But recently there has been a strong surge in educational opportunities that help grow photographers' business skills.
PPA has made a conscious effort to offer business programs at Imaging USA, which has generated a new group of industry instructors--a wonderful resource for all PPA affiliates and members.
A few years ago, PPA also conducted a survey of studios around the country. The 2005 Studio Financial Benchmark Survey gave us, as members, a wealth of information about how we could make our studios more profitable. It is now time to repeat this survey. Thanks to this upcoming study and analysis, we will have even more information to help you navigate your business.
As your business and marketplace continues to change, PPA will continue to update the resources you need to stay on the cutting edge. Whether you are attending a PPA Local Affiliate, PPA Affiliate School, PPA Webinar, or Imaging USA itself, PPA is committed to making the best resources available.
May your business continue to grow!
Friends Met Along the Way
Through my photographic journey, I have had the opportunity to meet many wonderful people. Some have inspired me with their photography, others with their business savvy. Over the years, some have become close friends, people I have spent time with outside of photography.
One such person is Drake Busath of Salt Lake City, an incredible photographer with a successful business. I met Drake about ten years ago and count him as a great friend. I have had the pleasure of visiting his studio and spending time with his family.
Photography brought us together, but true friendship goes beyond the camera. A few years ago, my family joined the Busath family and a few other photography friends on a houseboat at Lake Powell. Friendship, laughter, great food, and fun...all started because of a camera. It will always be one of my family's treasured memories.
This April while representing PPA at the Asian Pacific Regional, it was a pleasant surprise to see Drake as one of the invited speakers. We crossed paths 6,000 miles from home and renewed a friendship that started many years ago.
My journey has become richer because of the people I have met, and I feel lucky to count Drake as a friend. This month, remember the friends that you wouldn't have if it wasn't for photography.
Dennis Craft, M.Photog.Cr., CPP, API, F-ASP
2008-2009 PPA President
image copyright Rod Gleason