0-5 seconds: Sum your business up in a sentence
We take photographs that make you go ooo, eee and aaa.
5-10 seconds: What's the business model?
We focus mainly on weddings and commercial work but really we love anything where people are involved. And we're always coming up with new and wacky ideas to extend the navyblur. brand: we have created the navyblur booth, for example. It's like a photo booth but bigger and better!
10-15 seconds: Who are your competitors?
EVERYONE! Well, not really. But there are tonnes of people out there with a camera and many are amazing photographers. navyblur. has a specific niche: we build on relationships with our clients instead of treating them like part of a factory line up.
15-20 seconds: What's your USP?
We always aim to make every photo session different, thinking of creative ideas to bring into the shoot: little DIY add-ons. I think real enthusiasm and passion is hard to beat. We want people to leave excited to see how their photos turn out and remembering a fun day.
20-25 seconds: How have you funded it so far?
As we do jobs, the money goes straight back into the business, so we are mainly self-funded. We are, however, also very fortunate to have generous and supportive families. There have been a couple of big payments that we just didn't have the money to cover straight away. But the investments were provided on a loan basis.
25-30 seconds: What were you doing before?
Xander studied A-level photography and then decided to do a two-year photography course in Northern Ireland to hone his skills. Christine lives in Northern Ireland, photography wasn't on the curriculum at her school but she did have the opportunity to work with a well-known wedding photographer as part of her work experience. This is where she knew this is what she wanted to do.
30-35 seconds: Where did the idea come from?
When we met at 18, we were both keen on photography so we thought we could do some little family sessions. I bought a home studio and we did little jobs here and there. About a year into my course we decided we wanted a business with a brand and its own identity. navyblur. was created in July 2009.
35-40 seconds: What's the smartest thing you've done so far?
Going full time and creating a completely unique brand. Also, on a personal level, the smartest thing was to stop comparing our success to others.
40-45 seconds: What's the stupidest?
At first, trying to run our business like everyone else was at the time. Trying to offer the same packages, compete with pricing and not do anything differently. We always knew that wasn't really us, we had to think for ourselves. Do things our way, even if it goes against what others consider to be the norm, is right and fair for both us and our clients.
45-50 seconds: If your business was a biscuit, what would it be?
Xander - McVities Digestive - All round pretty awesome and comfortable, (but it is a good biscuit! It's soft when dunked in tea but strong enough to not fall in!)
Christine - Tunnocks Teacakes - The colourful and shiny wrapper grabs your attention, then the marshmallowy chocolately goodness inside never disappoints!
50-55 seconds: Which idea are you a bit jealous of?
Probably the idea of the photobooth, we would have loved to have come up with that but we feel our booth has its own little quirks so it's fine!
55-60 seconds: Where are you going to be in 12 months' time?
We'll be entering the wedding season full steam ahead and still getting excited about all that is happening with our amazing clients. We hope to have a great name for ourselves throughout the UK and Ireland thanks for our endless wit and charm!
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