Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in photography but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Frannie Wilson, Co-Founder of Ampersand Studios, located in Boise, ID, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

I'm the co-founder of Ampersand Studios. A brand content agency in Boise, Idaho. We serve small business owners who are badass at what they do but need help explaining what they do to the world and crafting a marketing plan. We help them to tell a balanced brand story by aligning their brand's voice and visuals- and we do that through brand strategy coaching paired with content creation services like photography and video creation.

Tell us about yourself

My business partner and I have always loved starting, growing, and scaling businesses. Over the past 13 years, we've done it over and over again for ourselves- but now we focus all of our energy on Ampersand Studios, and we get our rocks off by helping others do the same! We are passionate about taking something that is just an idea and revealing it to the world in a way that creates fulfillment and income for people with big ideas.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Our biggest accomplishment is the team that we've built and fostered. The people that we get to lead and learn from every day make us insanely proud and in love with what we do. Oh, and there's nothing better than taking a burnt-out business owner and helping them breathe new life and excitement into their business and watching it thrive!

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

The hardest thing also happens to be the most exhilarating... The uncertainty of what's coming next and the unpredictable nature of so many variables could change the course of your business at a moment's notice. Being able to predict and react in a way that is best for the people and for the business can be difficult.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Start bringing on help even before you think you're ready. At the very least, start from day one, building out systems and documenting every step as if you're going to have to hand it off to someone else- that way, you'll be ready when the right person comes along. You will grow SO MUCH faster when you have help.
  2. Find a mentor. ONE mentor. Someone you trust, who's already done what you want to do, and who will give you hard and honest truth and feedback. Don't fill your head with advice from friends and family who haven't done what you're trying to do. Don't overwhelm yourself with tips and hacks from dozens of gurus who are all saying contradicting things. Find one person whose values and goals align with yours, and then go ALL-IN.
  3. Keep good, organized, clean books. Use software like Quickbooks and get it all automated and linked up to your bank accounts. Keep personal and business separate. Hire a bookkeeper. And pay yourself (even if it's just a little) from day one.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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