So, we started sharing fast business ideas, and just like fast food, they're meant to fill a need. They help you remember things you need to stay focused on when you don't have a camera in your hands!
We've shared forty different "blue-plate specials" over the last few months, and it's time for one more before Christmas and New Years!
With a new year right around the corner, you're down to the wire for 2018. You've essentially got ten days left to tie up loose ends on business and set things up for a cleaner slate in January. But December isn't just about closing the books on the year.
Today's Fast Food Special is a reminder of things you might want to do beyond just wrapping up business.
December: Wrapping Up More Than Just Gifts
- Holiday Wishes: While it's a little late to do a custom card for December, it's not too late to remind those people most important to your business how much you appreciate their support. From venues to wedding planners and clients who have referred business to you, take the time to make contact and remind them how much they mean to you. A "thanks" can range from taking somebody to lunch to gift baskets and even phone calls. Don't let the year close without saying "thank you."
- Major Purchases: If there's high-end gear you need for your business, you've got ten days to make the purchase and still take the deduction. Check with your accountant and find out if there's a benefit to taking the hit in 2018 based on your current deductions, revenue for the year, etc.
- December Deals: The Photokina show took place this past Septemer, and a lot of manufacturers announced new products. That means there may be some great deals still available at retail on previous models of cameras, lenses, lighting, printers, etc. New products coming in means the dealers want to move out the older inventory. Remember that doesn't mean the older stock isn't good, just that new models are coming in.
- Manufacturer Rebates and Bonuses: Take a look at all of the products you use in your business and then go online and check each manufacturer's programs. For example, Profoto has a great promotion going on right now with the A1 which ends on December 31, 2018. Excire Inc. has a program running until December 26, 2018. Tamron's rebates end on January 5, 2019. Marathon Press has a BOGO (Buy One Get One) on holiday cards ending December 31, 2018.
- Contract Renewals: From your insurance to websites, QuickBooks and Internet service, etc. check to see what savings are out there if you renew now. And, are you adequately insured? Are there major purchases you made during the year that need to listed on your policy? If nothing else, checking the dates on all the agreements with companies who support you will help you remember the timing for payments in the new year.
- Your Marketing Video: I still fail to understand why more of you don't take advantage of technology and put together your own mixed media promotional video. Combine still images with short video clips and great music to create your own marketing film. Technology has made it so easy and you've got most of the material to put together highlights of 2018 in a 2-3 minute film for your website.
- Airline Tickets: If you're headed to IUSA in Atlanta, now is a good time to be making flight arrangements. You're thirty days out, and don't forget to lock in your hotel as well. Don't wait until the last minute and then pay top dollar.
It's not directly about wrapping up business but it does deserve top billing:
- Your Family: There's that old expression about "shoemaker's children needing shoes." My mother used to constantly remind me that she wanted new pictures of her family! Take the time during the holidays to capture images of your own family. From Christmas to New Years everyone has opportunities to capture and create those special images that will become tomorrow's favorite memories. There's also a place for a few classic image or two in your marketing slide show and even next year's holiday card.
There's no question that December is one of those months that's incredibly busy and then slows down so you can let out a sigh and kick back a little. It's a great month to finish looking at this past year and be a little reflective. Pat yourself on the back for another year in business and start to think about your goals for the new year!
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