Kacey Wood, a junior at IU Bloomington, founded Kacey Lane Photography. It was a side business that provided high-quality but inexpensive photos for students who wanted senior photos.
Crimson Catalyst: If a person has an idea for a business, what are the first three actions they should take to make it a reality?
Kacey Wood: 1) Brainstorm and consult respected individuals. Make sure your idea is something that’s needed by the general population. Sometimes an idea that sounds good to you might not be something that other people will actually use. 2) Build a business plan. Make a step-by-step track of what your business will need to do and accomplish before it goes live. 3) Test. Test. Test. Once your idea is ready to go live, test it with segments in your target market to catch any mistakes.
CC: What has surprised you during the course of your day-to-day entrepreneurial journey?
KW: I had difficulty marketing my side business; I relied heavily on word of mouth. But then I decided to use Instagram to present my photos in front of my target market of senior high school students. Once I switched to Instagram, more customers were interested in my services.
CC: How do you define success?
KW: Because I didn’t have to rely on my business income for a living, I defined my success specifically on my enjoyment of the business. If I was having fun and truly enjoying what I was doing, that was what defined my success.
CC: What is dangerous or scary about being an entrepreneur?
KW: The unknown. Usually entrepreneurs have to take a risk, and there is no way of knowing how profitable and successful the business will be. That risk is scary at first.
CC: What is the best advice you’ve received?
KW: Continue to grow and don’t stay stagnant with your services. My photography teacher would always suggest that I learn a new skill on Photoshop to use on my senior photos so that I would always bring a new surprise to my customers.
CC: What is the best advice you can offer?
KW: Continue to ask for feedback from your customers and educated individuals. It is vital to understand what went right and wrong in your services so that you can adjust them in the future.