No one blog post could ever cover everything you should be doing to finish off the year strong, but here are a few ideas...
- November/December Holiday Promotions: Do you have everything you need ready to go? October is the latest you want to be doing any kind of mailing, direct or email, if you're promoting anything special for the holidays.
- Holiday Orders: Now is the time to remind your clients to get their orders in early. There's NOTHING worse than missing the deadline for a client who was counting on a wall portrait as a holiday gift!
- Albums and Frames: Check in with your album company and frame company and get a feel for turnaround time through the fourth quarter on your orders. You need to know the cutoff dates so you don't promise something you can't deliver.
- Giving Back Programs: Every year I hear a few photographers mumbling about wishing they had done some sort of program to help local non-profits through the holidays. Get your act together now, so you can make the most of whatever you decide to do.
- Holiday Cards: Get your holiday card into production along with your database of who it's going to be mailed to. On your list should be your own database of past clients, every business in your community, vendors you've worked with over the last year, venues and anyone who's provided you with some level of support.
- Your Convention Schedule: What shows are you attending in 2015? PPE finishes off the year at the end of October and then the cycle starts all over again with CES, PMA, IUSA, WPPI, Shutterfest and a long list of regional and state conventions. Make your reservations now so you're not chasing hotel rooms and flights when they're going for top dollar.
- Equipment Purchases for 2015: With all the shows coming up, it's time to start thinking about gear you can't do without. I'm not talking about things you wish you had, but the items you really need to raise the bar on your images and business. Also, don't forget that leasing equipment, if you qualify, gives you a chance to utilize somebody elses assets without depleting yours!
- Employees and Support Personnel: You to be doing something over the holidays to simply thank all those people who helped you all year long. So, what's it going to be? Again, now's the time for the planning.
Here's the point, you've got still got time to put some terrific plans in place and finish the year strong, but like any project when the clock is ticking...you snooze you lose!