[Part 2 of 3] Hip-Hop Business Lesson “cake”: You Are Cruel

Before we get into Flo Rida’s amazing business lesson #2 from his song “Cake,” let’s chat about the last email…


So what IS the “cake” of a photography business?


Some people responded back from the last email they thought it was, “to make memories,” to “have freed,” to “have flexibility,” and to “love what you’re doing every day.”


…and, they’re all sorta right.


But I want to be a little bit more clear here, so you’ve got something to work with.


The “cake,” or the REAL reason for your photography business is…






If that sounds a bit anti-climactic, that’s because it IS anti-climactic…


But there is a HUGE problem in our industry which is:


Almost nobody in the photography industry actually IS “living the life they want to live…”



…so here’s the thing…


And I’m just going to call you all out right now on it…


Are YOU living the life you want?


Probably NOT.


And I’m not talking “my life is ok,” and “I am content,” and “well the starving children in Africa would think my life is amazing so I’m just happy with what I have” BS.


You’re doing this photography thing, you’re doing it for the “life you want,” which probably means freedom to bring your daughter to the bus stop.


Freedom from a boss you hate.


Freedom from being “tied down.”


But ARE you free?


DO you have freedom?


Not just freedom of time, but from your own guilt and mental anguish?


Do you actually have the WORST boss you’ve ever had – the meanest, rudest, most “you can never get enough done at the quality you want done” boss…that ALWAYS makes you feel guilty?


…and that boss?





I want that to sit with you for a minute…





RE-READ the paragraph above if you need too…



The reality is this, and it was for me, too.


The cruelest person, boss, critic of them all?




If there was a boss as cruel as you are to yourself?


We would call that mental abuse, sue the S*** out of them, and spread the word on Facebook like there was no tomorrow.


OK – rant OVER.


I won’t leave you hangin’ – because Amazing Flo Rida Business Lesson #2 is HOW we’re going to fix this…HOW we’re going to make #1, the LIFE we want to live, a REALITY.


This is so much more simple than you think.


Let me give you a visual first, then I’ll explain what this all means…


A brief visual of Flo Rida in the music video


Sleeveless tee, hood on…

Grill…on his teeth…yeah…

Gold flashy Jewelry…

Diamond earrings…

Sunglasses…at night…and indoors…

Strange blue and bleached jeans that resemble capris but for men…

Bag full of gold bars…

Blue sequin high top shoes…

Fancy schmancy car…


So what does this all MEAN?


Quite Simply: “Dress for the cake” or “dress the part”


You keep the END in MIND.


In Flo’s case, he only came for HIS cake, to “leave with somebody.”


Think about it…


He KNEW the goal was to leave with somebody, which is going to effect:

1. The way he dresses

2. The way he acts

3. How many dollar bills he throws in the air…lol…



Back when you were single (or maybe you are single), when you went out for the night, did you wear a hooded sweatshirt, jeans and flip flops?


I mean…that’s how I go out NOW, now that I am MARRIED…


But back when I was single?


Heels, dark jeans, flattering top that wasn’t too fancy but wasn’t too casual (because I’m in Montana…where our men wear carhartts, flannel and have beards), volumize hair, curl, lip gloss, DONE! (as opposed to hair in ponytail, glasses, might not have showered today, jeans, flip flops)


You keep the END in MIND with everything you do.


Here’s the BIG problem I see in most photography businesses:


Said photograph knows the end they have in mind, but they feel like they will GET THAT end result with enough blood, sweat, tears, sacrifice and “hard work.”


“Once I get my name out there it will all come together…”


“If I just give the best customer service I can, including working evenings, weekends, and giving up time with my kids, then in the next year or two it will all work out and I’ll have that freedom…”


Sound like anyone you know?




Freedom and the life you desire does NOT come with hard work, sacrifice, or putting your clients needs ahead of yours.


It comes from DESIGNING IT that way…


You must KNOW what you want your life to look like, and then base your DECISIONS FOR YOUR BUSINESS around that.


Instead of what you’re probably doing right now:

DESIGNING YOUR BUSINESS for what you think will be most convenient for your clients, designing it around what “other photographers in your area” are doing, and giving up your own happiness because of it.


Some tough love:


Stop FREAKING photographing at sunset in the summer every night if you have young kids at home, then complain you can never tuck your kids in at night, because YOU are the one who DESIGNED IT that way!


Do you think I photograph at sunset in the summer, read, 9 pm at night? HELL NO! I have a 3 kids under age 6 at home…and THAT’S why I have off-camera flash – so I can make pretty light ANY time of the day, even at high noon.


Do other photographers in my area photograph at sunset in the summer? YEP! And I feel bad for them…and to put it bluntly without trying to brag…I’m probably making more than them…



But I get it – designing your business for your own happiness, freedom, and what YOU desire, is about as easy as losing weight.


Sure, it’s simple: eat less calories, work out more…but the REAL challenge comes in your mindset.


Mindset isn’t an easy thing to tackle, which is why in our paid mastermind group we actually HAVE a MINDSET COACH to talks to each student one-on-one.


But it’s VITAL.


OK – running out of room here so the mindset stuff will have to wait, as well Flo Rida’s Amazing Business Tip #3.



Lisa Edwards


P.S. OK – you “caught” me…there IS no “running out of room” when it comes to email. But here’s the thing, there’s only so much “space” and “room” in your attention span for me. I don’t want to overstay my welcome in your brain 🙂



That being said, if you DO have some “extra room” in your brain for more info on growing your photo business, 45 minutes to be exact, then check out this video I made…it won’t disappoint 🙂


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