I have about fourteen different things I’d like to write about right now. Changes have been afoot for Sarahndipity Imaging since pretty much the first breath of 2012, and I want to talk about all of them. At once. But I’ll do my best to keep on track with one here, and I’ll start some draft posts to talk about other changes another time.
CHANGE. After seeing growth last year (thank you to each and every one of you who reached out to us for your portrait sessions!!), I felt sure this rocky and uncertain path was unquestionably the path I was supposed to be on. I could feel in my bones that this would be a big year for me, for the business, for my little family. For finding balance as we constantly adjust to our constantly changing normal. So here we are in our new blog home. Welcome!
What changes, you ask? It seems odd to me that changes that have felt so big for our small but growing business are largely unknown to everyone outside our immediate circle. I’ve lived and breathed everything that has been going on. Working what seemed like hours on end when there weren’t even any photography sessions on the calendar. Learning, thinking, getting frustrated, stepping back, then learning more. I knew when I entered into this project, and dragged my family into the metaphorical trenches, that this would be no light undertaking. It’s a huge responsibility to launch a business. It’s a h-u-g-e amount of work. It’s also a huge potential for disappointment. But I’m too in love with the work and too in love with the possibilities that tomorrow holds to let go now.
(Had you forgotten about my tendency to ramble?)
Okay. The biggest and most challenging change Sarahndipity Imaging has undergone over the past couple of months was the move off of the web. Well, off of the wider web, that is. The website wasn’t driving business. At all. I think the only people who looked at it were family and friends and the occasional client I would send to the pricing page. I’m not sure why I feel compelled to explain our thought processes and the angst surrounding this decision, but it seems like it should be documented somewhere in some way.
I invested so many hours in designing and launching that site. SO many hours that I wasn’t spending playing and laughing with my boys. That I wasn’t spending sleeping. That I wasn’t spending living. SO many hours. (Web designers are not overcharging.) But I did get that site launched, and I was pretty proud of it. The thing is, it sat there collecting dust and sucking on our wallets and doing a whole lot of nothing. Including not getting updated. Because it was kind of a pain. Meanwhile, my business page on Facebook was easy, was flourishing, was bringing us action left, right, and center. So we went with that exclusively, which is a free service so far. I figured out how to add some custom apps to the FB page so I could include pricing information there, and it seemed unnecessary to keep the business website.
I have highly mixed feelings about letting the website go. I feel less official in a lot of ways. Less serious as a business owner. Who doesn’t have a website? I feel lame handing out business cards with a Facebook url. I was especially concerned about the potential client base who are not on Facebook. Many of whom are adamantly opposed to Facebook. But we’re funding this from our own meager personal stash, and we work hard to keep our spending down so that I can continue to work half time at my day job and be home with the boys part of each week. The website was really serving absolutely no useful purpose and hosting costs were doubling this year. It was a hard decision, but it was an easy decision.
I thought deciding to let the webpage go was the tough part. OH no. That was the easy part. I was finally reconciled to let IT go, but our web host was not so keen on letting our money go. What an adventure it was. I had very little issue taking the page itself down, but I hit wall after wall when I tried to prevent our faithful web host from charging us for the site we no longer wanted. I practically had to sign over my next born child before they finally enabled the functionality on my account to stop the automatic payments. After lots and lots of frustration and disappointment in a company I expected more from, our website is officially offline. Cue the deflated celebration. It didn’t feel like much of a success, since I wasn’t exactly excited about relying exclusively on FB, but our FB page has been the driving force, and for now, it’s just exactly what we need.
The one piece I couldn’t really replicate on the FB page: the blog. We’ve been through the fact that I’m not a reliable blogger. I’d redirect you to those discussions, but they will be living in the vault that is my webpage backup folders for time eternal. Sigh. I am not convinced that we made the right decision, but I do feel like that cash could be better invested elsewhere. Like in new photography equipment! So, I have set up a new blog, and we’ll see how this goes for now.
I’m going to save the rest for the next post. I probably won’t draw attention to this new blog for a bit here. I haven’t been writing much, and I need to get the excesses out of my system before I start dragging other people along for the torture. Not apologizing. NOT apologizing. (Again, I could link back to a discussion explaining this phrase, but, alas, no. I cannot.)
Depending on what I decide to ramble about next, I might include a photo or two. After all, that’s what we’re here for. Hope that you have enjoyed the tour of the new space. Until the next spark is burning…