The difficult thing to cope with for creatives in business is maximizing profits. When you strike out on your own there’s a lot of excitement about the freedom you will have to create and operate on your own terms. Unfortunately, this can go downhill quickly when you don’t have the business nous to back up your creative instincts.
So, how can you increase profits for your creative business and ensure your continued success? We’ve put together nine ways to get you through the more challenging times (and even maximise your profits when things are going well).
- Your Time Counts
So, do bill your hours. There’s this thought process in the creative world that you bill for the work that’s being produced without factoring in the amount of time it will take to do the work. Your time matters so you shouldn’t be afraid to charge your clients accordingly. Your prices will be comparable to your competitors and your profits will naturally rise as you start to charge the going rates for the work you are producing. Lawyers don’t just charge for when they sit down with a client or appear in court, they charge the hours that they have spent in building a case.
- The Pass-Through Products & Services
No matter what type of business you are running there’s a likelihood that you will rely on third party companies to produce a lot of your finished products. Whether it’s a printed product or online space, you should be passing these costs on to your customer by factoring it into the total price.
Consider the fact that you may have to hire a photographer, models, or equipment and then tally up the cost of all this… that type of cost shouldn’t fall on your head and if it does then it will continue to impact on your bottom line. Then consider the editing and copywriting, trademarks and more. Plus travel, catering, and more.
- Monetising Intellectual Property
When you produce inventions or ideas you can trademark or patent them, this will allow to monetise them by licensing them to clients and customers.
- Capital Investments
The biggest cost you will have is a workspace, as well as employing staff. Think about how you can turn this into an investment. Find a neighbourhood that will increase in value and add value to the property.
You’ll also have assets (furniture, artwork, vehicles, computers, etc.) that count to your balance sheet – these can be sold to generate revenue if necessary.
If you’re just starting out and you don’t have the money to purchase a workspace, then leasing may be your best option. Alternatively, if you have already purchased a workspace there may be room for you to lease to another creative type and earn extra income to help pay the mortgage as well as other overheads.
- Producing Your Own Products & Services
You’re a creative so you are constantly coming up with new and wonderful ideas, whether they apply to specific projects or are inspired elsewhere. Your offering may be a physical product, an idea, a service that you offer, or even regular events on your expert subjects. Anything can be monetised when there’s a market for it.
- Side Hustle
You can operate a side business with no relevance to your main business to provide yourself with a much-needed boost in profits. It will require more time and effort, and employees… but if you get in on the act with someone else as opposed to being the main operator you have a new source of revenue.
As a new business, you may find other new businesses tend to offer things other than payment in exchange for your services. This could be stock in their business or in some cases, partial ownership. However, you yourself could request equity as well as payment for your services when you’re creating unique services or intellectual property for a client.
Remember to be considerate, though, and also the true value of the investment may never come to fruition. Your shares could become diluted if other investors get involved or your client’s company might go bankrupt. There are a lot of possible outcomes and you should be prepared for all of them.
If you like the sound of equity, though, speak to an accountant as you will need to consider tax liabilities and what type of impact that could have on your main business.
- Cost Efficiency
Use Printed.com discount codes to get lower prices on all your printed materials. Costs are a big killer in any business, but particularly in the more creative industries. One of the biggest challenges is controlling printing costs without scrimping on quality and standards. You can use voucher codes to your advantage and make sure you’re not compromising in the wrong areas of your business.