The Software Solution to
Financial Success

By Ann K. Monteith, M. Photog. Cr., PPA Certified, A-ASP

The number one management question I am asked by portrait/wedding photographers today is: "What kind of software do I need to manage my business?"

No other software being sold today can produce the specific reports that studio owners need to monitor all aspects of a studio business — from marketing effectiveness to financial position.
Ann K. Monteith

Until the development of SuccessWare, I'd have to tell them to do as I had done for a decade: use an assortment of existing off-the-shelf software applications (spreadsheet, data base, and bill-paying packages) to patch together a system that provides the essential business data required for making correct management decisions. This system was cumbersome; it required triple-entry of information because the three programs were not integrated (could not share information). No other software being sold today can produce the specific reports that studio owners need to monitor all aspects of a studio business — from marketing effectiveness to financial position. Until SuccessWare, not one based its operation on the only industry-standard data-collection and evaluation system ever developed for the studio photography industry. The author of that system is Charles ("Bud") Haynes, noted businessman, past president of Professional Photographers of America (PPA), and my business mentor.

Ann K. Monteith
M. Photog. Cr., PPA Certified, A-ASP

Ann Monteith is the industry's leading authority on studio business management and serves as a consultant to studios throughout the country both privately and under the auspices of major industry suppliers. Her Guerrilla Management Workshops have helped hundreds of studio owners dramatically improve the profitability of their businesses. AnnMonteith.com

Experience shows that where most businesses go wrong is expecting the data their software programs and/or accountants provide to determine their tax liability to be sufficient to manage the business. This type of year-end tax information is called "custodial" accounting. But business owners need "managerial" accounting, in which much of the same custodial data is used — but arranged much differently — to allow studio owners/managers to know exactly where the business stands every day. This vital information flows from a marketing and financial management plan established for each business year.

While creating such a "budget," along with its monthly follow-up, is very complicated when done by hand, computer software makes it simple. Unfortunately, off-the-shelf software, even when it is subjected to time-consuming adaptation, still causes confusion and wasted time because hand calculations are necessary. Having worked with or taught several thousand students over the past twenty years, I know how frustrated photographers become when they understand the need for this information, but they simply do not have the time or expertise to create a software system to manage their studios. So, many turn to popular applications such as "Quicken" or "Quick Books" to learn more about their business finances. They spend hours paying bills and entering financial information, however these programs do not reveal exactly where or why the business is making or losing money. This can be disastrous for a business since the owner is unable to create effective performance improvement strategies. The business simply drifts along, never reaching its full potential.

Through SuccessWare, available for both Windows and Macintosh computers, studios can receive the managerial information they need. Thousands of studios are now using the software and achieving remarkable results that more than justify the purchase price.

I am not paid for this endorsement. In fact, I know that SuccessWare, Inc., unlike other software companies, has made a conscious decision not to pay anyone for endorsements. I simply believe in what this product can do for studio owners since I've seen it over and over again with my own eyes. I have worked long and hard at helping studio owners improve their profitability, and I can assure you there is nothing in the industry to equal the performance of SuccessWare. I am certain that you will recover every dollar of the purchase price through improved profitability and time saved. Investing in SuccessWare is simply the best business decision you can make. 

Ann K. Monteith
Annville PA

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