The Photography For Little People Franchise team continues to grow with our new member Michael Halpin. Who will be creating and preserving newborn and baby memories through beautiful photographs. Michael will be working in and around Harrow, Edgeware, Wembley, Pinner, Northwood and Ruislip. He is mobile so brings his studio to you.
We caught up with Michael and asked him a few questions about is passion for business and photography and his journey so far…
What drew you to the PLP franchise ?
I have always had an interest in photography and also liked the idea of running my own business. When I saw Photography for little people I was really impressed with the amazing images and products they produced. I saw this as an opportunity to improve my photography skills and work in an environment that I would really enjoy . The idea of being able to produce such amazing images and present them to proud parents was something that really appealed to me.
What are the stand out features of owning a franchise with the PLP?
Starting your own business can be quite a daunting prospect but with Photography for little people you have a proven system to follow. This is designed by people who have travelled the same path which you are setting out on and gives you the chance to learn from their experience.
You also have the support of head office who are happy to help with any questions you may have and have organised all the admin side of the business for when you start processing orders. With PLP you have the backing of a respected well known brand and the online presence of a professional website. All the franchisees are very open and happy to offer any tips or knowledge that may help your business so it is very different to just starting up on your own.
How did you find the training and the first month or two of business?
The training began by going through the business manual to get a good understanding of how everything works. Each chapter is followed by a Skype session with head office so you get an opportunity to go through anything you are unsure of . There is also hands on studio based training where you learn all about your camera and lighting equipment and also the safe handling and posing of babies. This training also goes through the impressions process and everything you need to complete your first photoshoot. There is a lot to learn and it can be a steep learning curve but I found Melanie to be an excellent teacher. She is very passionate about the business and manages to create a relaxed atmosphere while being very professional and organised .
Soon after this training I attended my first Baby show at London Olympia, to be on a stand here with PLP was a whole new experience for me. It was a good opportunity to meet some of the other franchisees and to learn more about the business. As a result of attending the baby show I soon had my first photoshoot , I must admit the idea of going through this on my own was a bit scary, but the couple were really friendly and once I got started I really enjoyed it, I now have a few more bookings lined up and I am looking forward to getting more experienced and confident with my photography
What is it like to run your own business?
For the last 24 years I have had a traditional 9 -5 job so running my own business was a very different prospect. To get your business up and running requires time and effort that is why it is very important to do something you really enjoy and have a passion for. You need to learn how to promote your business and give people a reason to use your services. You also need to be organised to look after all aspects of the business from looking for new business to dealing with existing clients and completing photoshoots ,With PLP both head office and the other franchisees use their experience to help you with all of this. While all of this does take time and effort it is nice to know that you are in control of your own time and you can plan your diary around your family or other things that are important to you. It also personally gives me a lot of satisfaction to know that I am building something for the future and providing a service I can be proud of .
Whats next for Michael and your baby photography business?
Over the next 6 -12 months I plan to establish and build my business in the Harrow area Work on my online and social media presence , this is something that is very new to me but also very important to any business in the present time. I will also be working with local groups in the area to promote the business offline I have another babyshow coming up in early 2019 so this is a good opportunity to promote PLP and always generates a lot of interest The company have also launched an amazing range of new products so it looks like exciting times ahead. I am looking forward gaining more experience and improving my skills and being able to offer a quality service to all my customers