Let Me Tell You A Story
There have been many times that Adam and I have faced a crossroad in our business. We recently recorded a podcast about advice we’ve been given that didn’t suit us (I think it goes up next week). We’ve been told to raise our prices. “You could charge $25,000 for a website,” they say. We’ve been told to rent out our studio on the weekends. We’ve been (jokingly) told, “It’d probably be easier if you cared less.”
We’re in this business for a certain type of person. A small business owner, specifically. And with that comes its own challenges, budget constraints and LOTS of freedom. I’ve worked with large corporations with glamorous budgets (that aren’t actually that glamorous) while taking direction from a middleman and it’s not my jam.
This is our fifth year in business and we’re working with so many amazing clients. Some are using their savings account to fund something new, some are selling a lot of product, others are opening their second location, a lot are entrepreneurial parents, a few are leaving really secure jobs to follow their passion. The stories are amazing. We don’t have to try hard to build their brand. In a way, they strengthen our own. Our clients are our story.
Speaking of stories, this post really resonated.
The Wonder Jam’s ethos is one I identify with so much. I prefer working with small businesses that are as local as possible for the same reasons you mentioned above. Of course, I don’t exactly have brands like Nike or Patagonia kicking in my door to have me come shoot for them (yet), but I’m not sure I’d want to regularly work with that large of a business anyway. I don’t know. I mean, let’s talk numbers first before I turn them down too quickly.
I’ve been the middle man at an agency or company working with independant creative agencies/freelancers. It’s a soul-crushing position, and I can imagine a little piece of my clients died each time they had to talk with me about some minor adjustment that I would then relay to our team to complete (or complete myself if within my capabilities). There’s a place for those types of companies, but I don’t think I belong there. Much respect to you, Adam, and your team for staying true to your tribe when you could very easily work with a “bigger” one.