An argument could be made that because of the existence of Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google merchants, etc., there’s no longer a need for a standalone company website. It’s just another thing to take care of in a very long list of things. Plus, if you’re new to navigating the backend of a website, it can be very daunting to take on.Read More
I used to be one who wanted to “hack” my way through productivity.
If I woke up earlier, I’d have more time to get things done. If I did tasks in 20-min chunks, I’d find that creative flow. If I planned my day out in the morning and then recapped my day at EOD, I’d know what to do.Read More
How exciting! You got contacted for an interview, now what? Having been on both sides of this for various formats (magazine, online pub, blog, podcast, etc.) and as someone who likes to be prepared, I have some thoughts on the best ways to get ready for a press interview. This is written for the interviewee and to be more specific, the small business. Not the one who already has a PR agency.
These steps are mainly for live interviews, such as for a podcast or on a phone. If you’re doing a written interview, you can skip everything in the “during” part.Read More
If you’ve been in the business of providing services long enough, you’ve likely grappled with this question. “Should I charge for this X thing?” And even if you’re mostly a product-oriented company, you probably offer some services like classes or tutorials.
I do not have an easy answer for you, as it’s something I am also struggling with. Expertise comes with experience built on labor, whether physical or mental. When you reach a certain level of expertise, people start coming to you with questions. This isn’t about how to set your rates or prices, it’s about whether you should or not.
I am a believer in both not gatekeeping valuable information and paying people what they’re worth. It is unfortunate that we tie money with value but it is what it is. When you pay for something, you want to receive something back. This is an easy enough concept for physical goods but not so much about digital ones or intangible ones.
If you pay for a cooking class, you expect to learn how to cook that meal. The more you pay, the more detailed, personalized, and valuable experience you expect to have. Yes, you can watch a free recipe video on YouTube but maybe you want more.
And this is the hazy line that I’ve settled in. Generalized information and advice, like this newsletter, is free. Once you start veering into the personalized advice territory (i.e. “What should I do with my Instagram account for this specific goal I have in mind?”), it becomes a paid service. Digital worksheets could be both as long as the free one has some clear goal. It could be brand awareness or leading customers to a paid worksheet.
Likewise, you could offer free video tutorials on how to brew coffee with a certain method (there are so many of these out there). AND you can offer paid small group classes or 1:1 home barista training.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this, especially if you’ve drawn a different hazy line than I have.
If you’re thinking of outsourcing your photography work, this piece is for you. I’ve written about why I don’t think freelance marketplaces are great for creatives but I haven’t focused specifically on photography yet. I’m writing this with a dual perspective: as someone who advises on marketing and as a photographer.Read More
As we head into the holiday season, boundaries – personal or business – are more important than ever. While this is written more for the business marketing end, I’m sure you can find ways to take the tips into other aspects of your life. I’m also still learning my own boundaries so please don’t take this as the end-all-be-all type of guide.Read More
About Jenn Chen
I'm a San Francisco-based writer & photographer. On the side, I munch on donuts & hang out with my dog Zoey.
You can reach me here or on Twitter.
eat / drink coffee / write / travel
>>>> all in one.