Grow Your Business in the Slow Season

It doesn’t matter if you are working as a full time makeup artist or if you are doing a little freelance on the side, OR if you are primarily in bridal or strictly commercial work, this time of year can be a little quiet. And for creatives, sometimes we get stir crazy!

So what do you with the down time? My suggestion is that you use this time to GROW your business and take it to the next level!

Here are a few things that I am working on now to grow my business.

Work on New Portfolio Images

This time of year is booming with workshops and styled shoots. This is an excellent time to   get together a team and add some fresh work to your portfolio. These are the best types of images because you can control the content. Unlike with paid clients, you can choose the model, the wardrobe, exactly how you want hair/makeup, the photographer and location.

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This gorgeous shot of Helen Kreutzer (hellyofficial on Instagram!) by Caroline Lima Photography is stunning!

 Make Friends. Influence People.

It’s easy to hibernate in the winter. I get it, you just want to snuggle up and wait for spring time. But it’s so, so, so important to get show your face…like in real life, not on social media only! If you are new to life as a creative entrepreneur, make sure to get out and connect face to face with other creates.

How? Check out the Rising Tide Society and find a group that meets nearby. I think there are 4-5 groups that meet up the first Tuesday of the month in Richmond, VA. If you don’t know about the Rising Tide Society, look it up, join the movement. #creativityovercompetition

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Brainstorm New Services

If you have a busy season and a slower season, you should brainstorm ways to keep the money rolling in year around. At last months Rising Tide Society meeting, my dear friend, Joanna Avant (amazing wardrobe consultant) and I snapped the above picture at the meet up. Can you see the see the sheer excitement on our faces?!?!

Its because we were finishing up the details and getting ready to roll out our new package for Valentine’s Day called the Refresh Sesh. Its a virtual makeup and wardrobe edit! Cool, right? Its a mini version of our services that we are offering via Skype/Facetime and only selling 12 spots this week

. Find out more info on my blog here or buy yours on the website here!refresh-sesh-square

Educate Yourself

Sometimes I can be a big old nerd. I just love to learn new stuff. I don’t know why, but knowing new stuff is fun to me! Another super cool thing about the Rising Tide Society in addition to the community aspect is their focus on education.

Their blog is a wealth of information on SO many topics that creative entrepreneurs struggle with. For the last few weeks, I have been signing up for their weekly webinars that have had incredibly informative speakers sharing valuable information that we all need. Check it out!

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Refresh

I have mentioned this a couple of times, and it is mostly because I want to make sure that you guys are ready for this……2016 is the year of Refresh for me.

What does that mean? Coming soon, I will be rebranding and fusing together Emily Hudspeth + MMMUA to live under a new brand that is going to be awesome! I have been hard at work with a super talented designer to create a beautiful home for all of this info to live. There will be new resources and guides and I can’t wait to show it to you later this Spring.

  1. If you have purchased a guide from the Shop, those are getting updated.
  2. The Instagram page for MMMUA will go away and Emily Hudspeth will change to the new name and all posts will come from there. So join me there and follow along.
  3. I will deleting this email list and starting over fresh. Don’t worry, you will have a chance to opt in to the new list here before April.
  4. More to come!

RefreshCan you guys believe that its February already!?!?! Time to make the magic happen before busy season strikes again!

In case you missed it, please update your opt in if you want to continue to hear from me. Either unsubscribe or join our fresh start list here. 

xoxo

Emily

Who is in your network? Why it matters who you know!

Networking Guest Post

The One Thing Every Successful Money Making Makeup Artist Is Good At (It’s Not Makeup)

In almost every profession your success depends on two things. Results and relationships. Makeup artistry is no exception. Whether you are rising up the ranks in the fashion industry or establishing yourself as as a local MUA for weddings, if you do exceptional work but no one knows about it then your success will be stunted.

Some would say there’s a missing element to the equation – that as well as results and relationships you also require some luck. I would argue that if you actively build meaningful relationships, if you give your time as freely as you can and if you are generous to all in your circle, you will make your own luck!

Emily’s a great example of this – she’s warm and friendly, and generous with her time (she’s been kind enough to respond to all my emails and take my calls before she even knew me), is engaged with her followers on social media and blog comments and consequently has a great network to reach out to for everything from interviews for her site to help with her business.

So in other words, if you want to be successful you need to be building a network.

Emily uses events like The Makeup Show as great opportunities to network with other artists.

Emily uses events like The Makeup Show as great opportunities to network with other artists.

But isn’t networking a bit sleazy?

If there is a book that could be said to be the bible of networking, it is Never Eat Alone (and other secrets to success one relationship at a time) by the master networker Keith Ferrazzi. (There is no book I wish I’d read more when I was still in school than this one!)

In it Keith argues that good networking, far from being that cliche of stopping to talk to someone just long enough to find out how they can help you, is in fact all about finding ways to make other people successful. He says this…

“A truly effective networker begins with the question “How can I help this person?” and not “How can they help me?”

This may sound a little back to front. Surely you don’t want to be surrounding yourself with people who need your help?

Well first, consider the people that you think are successful. Have they achieved this success all by themselves? Of course not! Many people have helped them on their journey. And why? Because generosity leads to generosity – perhaps they’ve asked for a favour in the past. Perhaps they just take pleasure in helping someone out.

Which leads to my second point – helping others is actually one of lifes great pleasures! Yes it can be time consuming, but it can also be satisfying, rewarding, fulfilling, all of the above.

As Emily says in her book Market Yourself to Make Money –

 

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“We all grow our businesses by supporting each other. I have learned some of the best tricks and secrets from other makeup artists. I have gotten some of my best jobs from referrals from other artists and I am convinced that it only makes me look better when I have a good person to refer to a photographer or client when I am unavailable.”

And what makes this “help-others” mindset so fantastic when it comes to a room full of strangers? Because it removes every last drop of sleeziness. If you’re thinking how can I help this person every time you speak to a stranger there’s no way you can come across as grasping!!

But I hate to ask…

A mindset of generosity will get you so far, but as willing as you are to offer help, you must also be willing to ask for it. For many people this won’t come easily. Many will not like the feeling of asking for a favour, or potentially owing someone one.

But look at it this way – do you enjoy the opportunity to help out a friend or colleague? Isn’t it satisfying when you can connect someone with just the right person to help them out – a good recommendation for a stylist or an accountant who you trust? Why should your connection feel any differently? Plus we’re all adults here – they can say no if they wish and no harm done. But if you don’t ask you won’t receive!

Don’t delay – start yesterday!

Okay, you’ve come to terms with networking being a good thing and you’re comfortable with asking for help. I cannot emphasise this next point enough…

START NETWORKING AS SOON AS YOU POSSIBLY CAN!

Why do I say this? For two reasons –

  1. Cultivating meaningful relationships takes time, and getting to know influencers in your field will not happen overnight. Even if you have a clear idea of who you’d like to connect with, reaching out to them directly might not be workable, and getting the right introductions might take some work.
  2. Because people already in your network will start to slip away unless you pro-actively stay in touch. When I think about all those people at school, uni, former jobs that I’ve lost touch with it makes me sad

And inevitably it will be the opportunities that you haven’t anticipated that will benefit most from beginning now (or suffer most from not!). Have you ever been in a situation where you’ve thought “I used to know someone that would be perfect to chat to about this… man I wish I’d stayed in touch!”. Well never again!!!

Have a plan

While you shouldn’t exclude anyone from your network (you just never know), that is not to say you shouldn’t be clever about expanding your contacts. And the best way to think about this is in terms of your career goals. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • As a makeup artist where do you want to be in five years time?
  • To get to where you want to be in 5 years time where do you need to be in 2 years time?
  • To get to where you want to be in 2 years time where do you need to be in 6 months time?

Once you’ve got answers to these questions, you can use these career goals to define your networking goals:

  • Who if you got to know them could help with getting to your six month goal (Person A)?
  • Who if you got to know them could be a big help with getting to your 2 year goal (Person B).
  • And who if you got to know them could be a big help with getting to your 5 year goal (Person C).

And final step is about using your pre-existing network to make all this happen!

  • Who do you know already that could introduce you to person A
  • Can person A introduce you to person B, and if not who can?
  • Can person B introduce you to person C, and if not who can?

Write the answers to these questions down! It’s a proven fact that people who write down goals are much more likely to achieve them!

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(To help with this process we’ve created a work sheet. At the end of this post we’ll be running a competition, with this as a bonus free download for everyone who signs up and enters)

Once you know who you need to know, you can start doing a bit of research and finding ways to connect with them. Ask friends for introductions, which are always better than going in cold. Follow them on Twitter, or their blog if they have one, contribute to conversations and let them know you like their work. Sharing, liking and engaging with their stuff is a great way to get on their radar.

Some incredible artists that Emily met at last years Makeup Show in Los Angeles.

Some of the  incredible artists that Emily met at last years Makeup Show in Los Angeles.

Most importantly, don’t let your first conversation with them be asking for something! Remember – what can you do to help them?

And have a system…

If you’re going to maintain warm, deep relationships with tens, if not hundreds of people that you can potentially call on at a moments notice, you’ve got to stay in regular contact, and this means you’ve got to get organised. It sounds clinical – but the simplest way to do this is have a reminder set up for every person in your network, to prompt you to check in and say hi.

You can do this one of several ways – and this will depend on your personal preference. You could…

  • Keep a list of names in the back of your diary and write next to them when you last contacted them
  • Use a task manager such as Microsoft Outlook on your PC or Wunderlist on your phone. Set up a reminder (in Outlook the shortcut is Ctrl-Shift-K) and then set the task to recur every 6 months
  • Put an recurring appointment in your digital calendar
  • Use LinkedIn’s built in Relationship feature – where you can make a note about how you met and set up reminders to reconnect.

Whatever you do, make the time to do these regular check-ins. You don’t always have to have an excuse (“Hey Emily, it’s been a while so just thought I’d say hi – hope you’re doing okay and had a nice Christmas”), or it can be flimsy (“Hey Emily, just passed the bakery and the pie in the window reminded me of your cooking! Hope you’re cool”), seasonal (“Hey Emily – Merry Christmas!!!”) or as extensive as you like.

But trust me – get into this habit and not only will you have this expansive network at your fingertips – but you may just get some nice replies in return too.

Next steps…

Okay, if a message is important it’s worth repeating – start your networking efforts TODAY!! Write down all your potential sources of connections – school, college, work, clubs – for each one try to list the people you’ve perhaps lost touch with, and then start re-establishing connections. No pretense – just a “I haven’t been in touch for while and I just wanted to say hi! How’s it going?!”

For your career’s sake, this is especially important to do for people that you’ve worked, other MUAs you know or anyone working in the industry.

So to both motivate and challenge you we’re launching a special competition! The winner will receive a special career building bundle:

  • A copy of Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi (Chris’ Networking Bible)
  • A copy of Emily’s eBook – Picking Your Ideal Client
  • A copy of Emily’s eBook – Marketing Yourself – which includes her own tips on networking

(all downloads by Emily can be found here)

But it’s not just any competition – to encourage you to stay in touch with your network every entrant will receive a “lucky link” to share – if some else enters through this link you’ll receive a further ten entries into the competition!! Brilliant huh?!

Click HERE to enter

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Plus everyone who signs up will receive free access to our Networking Goals Worksheet!

So no excuses – reach out, build and maintain those connections, help your peers and take your career to the next level!!

Images courtesy of EventphotosNYC, Keoki, Jason,Chris Small


Chris is one half of the team at CareerInMakeup.com – a website focussed on how to become a makeup artist and how to run your business once you get there. He’s passionate about helping MUAs to run their businesses effectively so they can get back to doing what they love – Makeup!

 

 

 

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Thanks Chris!

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You can also use social media as a way to network and connect with artists all over the world. Join us for the February Photo Challenge, get inspired by what your new friends have in their kits and win some products for your kit. Check out this post and see how to win!

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Did you subscribe?

 

Chris Milone Interview

How did I find such a fabulous artist like Chris to share with you? Well, I asked and I received.  Yep, it was that easy. In a business coaching program that I am currently working on, I posted in our group that I am looking for interesting, successful stylist/makeup artists to feature here. Boy did I hit the jackpot with Chris!

Thanks so much to Chris for sharing your answers with us. Keep your eyes out for the next interview. As usual, we will have a new post each week and feature at least one artist per month. If you (or someone you know) would like to share your story, please contact me!

Now, for our Q & A with Chris!

How did you get started?

I got my start with makeup in theater, I used to be a dancer and had many girl friends who always wanted me to do their makeup. Many said I was very good at it, so I tried retail for a while. That lasted about 6 years, till I hated it so hard I needed a change, so I said I want to do this professionally, I want to work fashion week and film and television. I quit the retail world and went to makeup school for FX, while there building my book and doing photo shoots, also working on Inde. films. worked my butt off then eventually applied to the Makeup union. Long story short I got in, and here I am.meairbrush

What brought you to the beauty industry?

I have Always been fascinated by makeup even from an early age, watching my mother put on makeup. Halloween was always my favorite holiday, love to just create different disguises. Retail was really my first venture into the industry, I learned a lot, and the training i got there laid the roadblocks to where I am today. Working with different faces and skin tones it’s a good training ground.

What do you specialize in?
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Well I am a Makeup Artist, that does just about everything. From Beauty to Special effects to Body painting.
What is the coolest client or gig you have ever landed?
Well that would have to be touring the world with Madonna, Twice. Its a wild ride, I got to see the world, and work for one the biggest and greatest pop stars ever.
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What product or tool is your favorite, one that you can’t live without?

My brushes are really important to me, I have every brand under the sun but my all time favorites are from a japanese brand Hakuhodo.

What was the biggest challenge to starting your own freelance business? How do you stay motivated?

It can be scary at first but starting out in this business is not easy, it’s getting very over saturated with artists making the paid work very hard to come by. So getting the paying clients and keeping them is the hard part. It all comes down to networking and staying on people’s ray-dars. I love what I do and am very lucky to be making a decent living doing what I love, that in itself is motivation enough. You get some slow periods and just when you start to panic the phone always rings with work, usually all for the same day too haha.
Any other tips or advice you would give to someone just starting?
NETWORK!! with everyone and everywhere. also keep it simple. Many new artists make the mistake of going full on with makeup but restraint is key, clean and simple beauty brings in the paying jobs.
Keep up with Chris on his website here and social media!
Twiiter @Chrismaquillage
Some of Chris’s newest work
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