Kiddie Kandids announced this week that they are shutting down their 184 studios across the United States, and are filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. They’ve faced a challenging 18 months, and when banks cut off funding this month, they had no choice but to shut down.

Kiddie Kandids had one major disadvantage that you don’t have – they are a large company that had to meet the requirements of many different management leaders. They were built to run as a profitable business model, not as a photography studio.closed for business

As with all big companies, they have stockowners to satisfy, goals and objectives to meet, and profit margins to maintain. If they have something happen to the way they’ve always run, it takes a management decision to put a new policy into place, and implement it down into the various stores.

As a small business owner, you are the management, the worker, and everything in between. If you see you’re not selling weddings the way you used to, you can adjust and try something new. Immediately. With the very next prospect that comes through your doors.

So its 2010. What worked well last year? What didn’t?

Take those ideas and start making changes.

If you saw your wedding business fall off last year, instead of waiting around to find out what happens this year, make a change. How about doing event photography this year in addition to weddings?

If you saw your family portrait business fall of last year, move into babies as well. The wonderful thing about babies is they are born every single day of the year. And they are only little for a short period of time – miss their first month without a photograph and its gone forever. The emotions are there, you just need to find out how to market to bring them in every single month.

Add to that your customer service skills, and you can “WOW” any family that was used to the Kiddie Kandids mentality. Kiddie Kandids survived on a worker-bee pushing a button on a camera, and hard selling at the computer station after the shoot. Just by implementing good old-fashioned customer service, your marketability goes up tenfold.

Can you make 2010 the year you close your business? You bet.

But you can also make 2010 the most profitable, the most fun year you’ve ever had. The business is out there. What are you doing to get it?

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