Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in photography but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Catie Ronquillo, Owner of Catie Ronquillo Photography, located in Prosper, TX, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I'm a personal branding photographer for women entrepreneurs. I help business owners stand out online with strategic brand photography so they can attract more ideal clients to scale their impact and income.
Tell us about yourself
I started a full-time job working for a publishing company after college. A few months into the job, I realized that it was not what I wanted to be doing with my life. I knew there must be more than cubicle life. It was around that time that I made my first "grown-up" purchase of a digital SLR. I dove into research about how to take good photos, and I also discovered the world of wedding photography. It seemed so much more exciting than my job. I set my sights on becoming a wedding photographer. Now, over a decade later, I've photographed weddings and high school senior portraits, and now I specialize in brand photography for women entrepreneurs. I love what I do and the freedom and flexibility it provides. While there's probably way more work involved, it's work that I love and can take true ownership of.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment is that with over a decade as a small business owner, I'm still here. It's been quite the rollercoaster ride from figuring it out from the ground up, a pandemic, pivots, and iterating in order to serve my clients and create the lifestyle I want.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
There's just so much to do and think about, especially when you're a solopreneur or have just a small team. When you're in charge, it's all on you. You have to create the marketing and sales strategy, implement it, and review it to see how it went. Not to mention taking care of administrative aspects.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Just start. It doesn't have to be perfect when you're just starting out. Prove that you can sell your product or service before you dive into building a website and brand.
- Establish systems to help you run your business. This may take the form of software - like a CRM and email marketing platforms, and it may be documenting your processes so that when you hire help, you have a training manual for what they need to do.
- Once you've taken on some clients and established that you want to keep up with this business, get yourself set up from the start. Business formation, business bank accounts, and investment in creating a brand.
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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