Are these GOOD ideas or BAD ideas?


TPF Noob!
Jan 23, 2012
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I probably should have asked someone before I started talking to people about this, but they seemed like really good ideas to me at the time.

Here's the idea: Offering free photography to families in need / families who have lost homes due to fire / disaster / etc

I contacted the local community action agencies and told them i would be willing to donate at least one free photography session to a family in need. a family who has suffered a house fire would be a prime candidate, because they would have probably lost family photos in the fire. They LOVED the idea and responded immediately. they'll be sending me a list of deserving families soon.

ok... now here's where i start feeling like a turd...

not only would i feel good about donating my time and services to these families, but i would also be bringing attention to my business as well. i live in a small town and i'm thinking i could score a spot in the newspaper, no problem, by doing this.

is this unethical? am i douche for even thinking of how this is going to benefit me? agh.

my husband says NO WAY - do you think politicians ever do anything good just for the feeling they get? lol. I guess not, but I'm not a politician.

You're just fine.If you donate to charity, do you not take the receipt and write it off at the end of the year?
I can't see how its unethical in the least. You are free to choose how you use your services and skills that you have and also free to set the price for those services.

I know many photographers who donate time to causes that they value, shooting for animal rehoming centres would be one good example where they are able to provide a level of service that the centres simply cannot afford. And yes a part of that is that their name gets out there and that they might well make some extra clients. The centre gets shots they can't afford and the photographer gets exposure - no one is harmed at all.

Similar story for your situation - you're providing services to people who otherwise would be unlikely to afford your services given recent events. As a part of that your name gets out there and you might well find some of them coming back to purchase your services, or others, from the event.

Most times photographers get a little uppity about people providing "free" is when the free being provided is something which would otherwise be a normally affordable charge. In other words when its undercutting the market (and by being free undercutting significantly). In this case you're not undercutting the market in the least
Alright, so I shouldn't feel bad about it. Good deal. I'm pretty excited about it, too. There's a family that lost everything they own in a nearby town, and my contact in the community action agency is going to have them give me a call.

Anything I can do to give myself a leg up right now is really a big deal.
Your helping out someone in need, AND helping out yourself! Sounds like a win-win to me!

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