Tammie McQueen is the owner of floral design boutique, Tammie’s Touch. She initially developed her business seven years ago and is located in the heart of downtown Lake Jackson, Texas.
What role, if any, does a business plan play in building and launching an arts company?
You must have a plan or goals in order to grow. You start at the bottom, with very minimal product – you need the plan in order to know what you are reaching for.
Did you find the concept of developing a business plan valuable in your experience of planning your arts company? If yes, in what ways?
Honestly, I didn’t have a written plan, but looking back I wish I would have.
What do you believe are necessary qualities, if there are any, for arts entrepreneurs to possess or develop?
I’ve found that most art entrepreneurs are dreamers. It’s easy to dream of what you want your success to look like. It takes passion, determination and hard work to see it through.
What was the most difficult part of planning and developing your arts company? How did you overcome this difficulty?
The hardest part for me was being confident that I could pay the rent! Retail rentals are very costly. I started out sharing the retail space with another “beginner” whose product was complimentary to mine. We shared the space for two years. I now have the original space plus the space next to it. I just celebrated 7 years.
How long did it take to plan, develop, and officially establish your arts company?
The process never really ends. But I’d say that after 2 years, I felt like we had something that the public embraced and we were in it for the long haul!
Starting out, what would you say is the best method in marketing an arts company and its services and/or product?
I’ve advertised in many ways. Consistent advertising is most important. The more your name is out there, the more it sticks. However, positive word of mouth referrals beat any amount of paid advertising.
What tools did you find most useful in the initial planning and development of your arts company and why?
Internet studies – keep searching. There is a wealth of information for questions you may have.
What was the best advice you received when planning and developing your arts company?
Be confident – you can do this!
What three pieces of advice would you give aspiring arts entrepreneurs about planning?
Start small – grow with demand. Seek advice – small business help from some colleges. Make sure you truly have a desirable product – others have to love it and be willing to buy it.
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