BUSINESS & BRANDING
THE HUMAN TOUCH
“Profitability means making and keeping
money,” says Tiffany Angeles, who worked
in the corporate sector before starting
Unlimited Style Photography 10 years ago.
“Without profitability, you are a charity.” She
refers to herself as an expert in “financial
freedom,” a role she takes on in her own
photo business and speaking engagements
after spending 15 years learning everything
she could about money.
At the crux of her business philosophy
is the idea that photographers often get
in the way of their own ability to profit.
When people are stuck financially, it’s often
because of mental blocks, she explains.
People tend to equate financial freedom
with sales success, but this isn’t entirely
accurate. “While being good at sales helps
you bring in more money, it doesn’t have
any bearing on whether you will keep it,”
she explains. “Everyone thinks more money
will solve their problems, but in reality it
just creates more expensive problems to
which you think you still need more money.”
She has honed in on eight blocks people
have when it comes to money, which she
calls the Wheel of Misfortune: avoidance,
being tightfisted, harboring resentment,
over-spending, not creating boundaries,
over-giving, being unable to receive, guilt
The key to a profitable studio, she says,
centers on building repeat and referral
business through interacting with clients on
a personal level. In order to increase sales,
she says, “people need to hear your voice.
Replying to inquiries over email doesn’t let
the person know whether they like you. And
people do business with those they know,
like and trust.”
She emphasizes keeping this human
contact strong throughout the relationship,
by physically speaking and not solely
relying on email correspondence. “In a
service business, the connection with
clients is of utmost importance,” she
says. “If they had a good time during the
shoot, if I helped them feel comfortable
and confident, they often would tell me
they already knew the photos were going
to be amazing.” It follows that if you are
enthusiastic about what you’re selling then
your clients will be too. The key to financial
freedom, according to Angeles? “You have
to resolve your relationship with money
first,” she notes. “There is no shortage of
tips and tricks when it comes to sales. But
if you don’t fix your own beliefs, blocks and
insecurities around money, you won’t be
able to sustain any significant change.”
Tiffany Angeles is an L.A.-based business
owner, speaker and coach who created
a thriving business by confronting and
overcoming her money blocks. Don’t miss
her WPPI Master Class, “Pricing for Profit,”
on February 7, from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m.
1. Know when it’s time to stop talking. So
many people talk themselves right out of
a sale by offering discounts and add-ons
before they allow the client to respond.
2. Let your love and excitement
of your products show through.
People get excited about what you
are excited about. Don’t be afraid
to pump up your enthusiasm for the
things you love.
3. Assume money is no concern.
You don’t know if your client recently
received a bonus, or Grandma is
paying, or they have more money
than they show off (often the case for
wealthy people). When money is not a
problem, you can focus on delivering
what would be best for the client and
confidently tell them the price. They
will either get the money or make
adjustments. Either way, it’s not a
reflection of you personally.
PHOTOS © TIFFANY ANGELES