For Michelle Moore – a White Rock-based photographer and videographer – being in business is all about connecting with other people.
As the owner of What I See Photo & Video, she gets to make those personal connections with her clients everyday, while leveraging her passion and talents to document their lives with eye-catching photos and videos.
A Natural Step – With a Little Help Along the Way
When she started her business, Michelle was drawn to entrepreneurship for two reasons: “I loved the idea of having the flexibility to work at my own pace and schedule, and also the freedom to create.”
But she didn’t try to figure it all out on her own in the beginning. “Small Business BC was definitely the first resource I used when starting my business,” says Michelle. “From the initial search for a business name to growing my business and redefining the goals with a new business plan, SBBC was very informative and helpful.”
“Utilize your local resources,” she echoes, “They are there to help.”
In the day-to-day operation of her business she also quickly realized the importance of building a solid team with skills to compliment her own: “It’s very difficult to do everything on your own, so play to your strengths and delegate other responsibilities so you can shine in the areas you perform best.”
In addition to the importance of teamwork, Michelle has learned a few other lessons while operating her business over the years. Chiefly, she has learned the importance of not shying away from setting the right price for her services.
“Value your time and talent,” she says. “The value comes from your technical knowledge, creative vision, time, experience and the facilitation of the service.” Michelle says, “Know who you are, as a person and brand. I would describe my brand as sophisticated fun, every photo and video is captured with vision and love. This may not resonate with every client and that is okay, you want to make sure you have the right fit before working together.”
She has also recognized the the value joining local professional groups related to your field as a networking tool. “Making new connections is great thing and you never know where they might lead,” says Michelle. “Share your knowledge, nurture your connections and have fun.”
A New Direction
While Michelle was professionally trained in photography and has operated her business for over a decade, she recently decided to return to school to take Digital Film Production. Subsequently, she expanded her business to also offer video services. Specifically, she has focused on creating professional, narrative-driven promotional videos for other businesses.
Videography has given Michelle an opportunity grow as an entrepreneur and creative person, and also explore new ways to connect with her clients and provide value to them.
“Our team works to define the purpose of your video, from concept to writing your script, directing and editing, we guide you every step of the way.”
And you may already be familiar with What I See’s videography work, as they recently produced a series of videos to help promote the Small Business BC Awards.
The Secrets of Her Success
For Michelle, success is much more than number on an income statement.
“Success can be defined in so many ways,” says Michelle. “I would say I am successful in as much that I have made a living from combining my natural talent (storytelling) with my passion (photography).”
And her greatest success to date? Working with Claire Newell of Travel Best Bets on a recent video project.
“Claire gave us her full trust in our creative vision and execution of her video. From the script writing to filming to the final edit, she had complete faith and was delighted with the end result. Not one change; she just loved it as it was presented. That was definitely the greatest compliment you can get in a creative field.”
The Road Ahead
Launching her new videography service was only the beginning. She plans to continue growing that side of her business, offer an online photography workshop and continue building her team so she can focus on growing other areas of her business.
And in that vein, she offers one last piece of advice for aspiring entrepreneurs: “Over the years I’ve discovered you must always be open to change and not be afraid to try new ideas – keep challenging yourself by setting out of your comfort zone.”