Two weeks ago today this little business of mine turned four years old! This post might be a tad late since we're currently in the trenches of this home remodel project, but I've learned a lot over the last few years that I want to share so better late than never, right?!
To avoid this post turning into a novel, you can read more about my journey as a business owner and why I started C&C in this interview featured on my friend Julie's blog. In a nutshell, I began this company as an event planner and shifted gears at the beginning of 2016 when I didn't want to handle event logistics anymore. I started offering photo styling as a service for brands and other creatives and even though it was like starting a completely new company, it was the best decision I've ever made! It definitely hasn't been an easy journey, there have been a lot of highs and lows but I'm so grateful for everything I've learned along the way. The past year has been the most pivotal and I'm excited to share my takeaways and what's next for C&C!
VALUABLE LESSONS LEARNED:
It's okay to pivot and by pivot I mean completely ditch your plan and try something else. Don't stay in your comfort zone because you're afraid of the unknown. In November 2015 I met photo stylist Shay Cochrane at a conference, can we say serious fan girl moment?! She's one of the two creative women that I look up to the most - the other is Ashley Brooke Designs but that's a total side note. When I met Shay I was still planning events but absolutely loved styling photos for my Instagram. I pretty much handed her my phone and asked if she thought I could style photos for a living even though I didn't have a photography background (or have a fancy camera!) As crazy as it sounds, I KNEW I could do it but was looking for some sort of approval from this woman I looked up to via the internet. I'm grateful she took the time to talk through my ideas and encourage me to go for it. Shortly after I planned my last events, taught myself how to use the camera I purchased and started to build my styling business.
Set up a mastermind group. I started one with two of my friends, Brittany and Megan at the end of last year. Each of us have completely different businesses but from day one of our friendship, we were all invested in each others businesses. We have a Google Hangout every few weeks and we take turns in the "hot seat" to talk through goals, current issues, ideas, etc. It's so nice to have honest feedback and ideas from people that understand the industry but are also outside of my immediate friend group.
Outsource! The first few years of my business I thought I couldn't afford to pay for help so I did everything myself. I was working 60 hours a week trying to juggle everything. Getting help with bookkeeping, hiring a virtual assistant and working with photographers are the main areas I outsource and beyond worth the investment! While I could take more of my photos myself, it takes me twice as long as my two bestie pros, Ailee and Michelle and the finished product isn't nearly as good as when I style and they shoot. I save time AND money by outsourcing such a big part of my business.
WHAT'S NEXT FOR C&C!
With the baby on the way and with our big house project going on, I've decided to share more happenings behind the scenes and not just the pretty finished projects. The C&C brand isn't changing - there will still be party inspiration, easy recipes and colorful details but I'll give more of a glimpse at our remodeling project, baby updates, etc!
I'm revamping The Confetti Concept a little bit to target anyone interested in breaking into the online world as a social media influencer. It's a crazy profession because there isn't much information out there openly sharing the ins and outs of pitching brands, negotiating rates, what to charge, etc! I definitely don't have all the answers but I'm going to have a couple other experts join in on the fun!
Giving my brand a much needed refresh! I worked with a designer a few years ago to create this template but I've made quite a few changes since then, including my placeholder logo. I'm collaborating with a few talented ladies to make my site super easy to use and reflect my party loving brand!
Thank y'all so much for all the support over the last four years. I'm so grateful for this community, the friendships I've made and the lessons I've learned. I can't wait to see what the next year has in store!