Option #2 “feels” better to me because that was my original idea.
That was my hunch
1 - Coworking as a way to subsidize the cost of a space you’d like to have but can’t afford, more often than not, ends up with you taking on even MORE space than you need and then being financially responsible for it. Worse…this ends up not being treated like a business because it’s not your primary business.
You don’t have to make a coworking space your ONLY business if you don’t want to, but I’d caution you from thinking that you can just pop up a space and run it on the side indefinitely.
2 - Be careful of letting yourself become a slave to an “idea” instead of focusing on how to best serve a community. There are two paths, only one leads to success in business:
- serve an idea
- serve a customer
Hint: your “idea” will keep asking to borrow money.
Your “idea” is going to change and morph over time no matter what you do, so locking into a specific idea now is setting yourself up for quite a bit of headache and heartache down the road.
This also comes down to what your goals are beyond how you divvy up space. Studio rental tends to become a fairly thankless and transactional business by comparison to a community space, UNLESS you have a plan for putting work to the community building work into things, like Angel has done with Cohere Bandwidth by embedding it into a bigger local community of arts and creativity. Making a studio a part of a bigger creative ecosystem, either locally or online, can help you create a MUCH more resilient model.
It also puts you in a position to know who the community that uses it is, and thus having a much better sense of how to structure your memberships to cover costs and even fund the opening in the first place.
Do you want to be in the business of renting space? Or do you want to be surrounded by creative people? They’re not exactly mutually exclusive, but the direction your personal priorities lean should color this decision.
On Tue, Oct 13, 2015 at 10:15 AM, Geoffrey Badner [email protected] wrote:
Alex & Katherine,
Thanks for your replies.
Option #2 “feels” better to me because that was my original idea. After looking for ways to fund the space (at NYC rents) the coworking space came into the picture. I’ve worked in several coworking spaces in NYC and always felt they were lacking in ways that I could improve on.
That issue aside, your comments echo those of others who have seen the space I’m considering. They seem to feel that, even with having the two spaces well separated and insulated for sound, having people shooting in the studio will disrupt the coworking space. Also, having people in the studio worry about annoying the people in the office areas would bring an an unappealing worry to the creative space.
I think I’ll probably end up with something similar to these membership-based shoot studios:
http://studioslic.com (I’m currently a member here)
Just not confident I can afford to do this in the space I want.
On Monday, October 12, 2015 at 12:58:03 PM UTC-4, Geoffrey Badner wrote:
Hello. First post here
I’m a photographer from Brooklyn, NY and I’m interested in opening a shared creative space for others in the photo business – photographers, hair/makeup, stylists, etc. I’ve located an excellent 7,000 sq. ft space and have done a couple of layout plans that map back to two different business models.
1: Shared Desks + Studio
This idea cuts the space into 2/3rds hot desks, permanent desks and a couple of offices with 1/3 remaining for a single large studio space. This allows for daily drop ins, month to month desk and a couple closed office rentals and is designed to provide a steadier cash flow for the space while also providing a very nice shoot space.
2: Three Studios
This idea removes all of the desks and offices and uses almost the entire floor for three studio spaces (plus a nice common area with couches and a conference room). This is more what I feel like I want to do, but it relies completely on community members booking the studios regularly to support the community. To do this, I have to charge a higher monthly price point for even the lowest tier.
I’m wondering… is option 2 just too much of a niche? Option 1 seems like the smarter business decision, but I really like the concept of 2.
Thanks for your thoughts!
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