If you’ve ever done research on buying a sports photography franchise, it’s likely you’ve heard of TSS Photography. But, did you know both the Military Times and Franchise Business Review picked TSS Photography as one of the top franchises in the country for military veterans?
The decision from Military Times was most recent and you can read more about the Franchise Business Review’s decision in the blog, “Franchise Business Review Names TSS Photography a Top Franchise for Veterans.”
While doing your research, it’s important to get more than facts and figures. Keep reading to learn why two U.S. Navy veterans chose TSS Photography.
Why Jason and Michael chose TSS Photography
Jason Jackson and Michael Rauen are building a TSS Photography franchise in southern Texas. They use their experiences from military life in the U.S. Navy to work together and make the franchise successful.
“My experience is probably a bit different from most people who buy a TSS Photography franchise,” Jason said. “I worked for two years part-time with a franchise in the Fort Lauderdale area while still active duty with the Navy.”
When Jason was transferred to a new location in southern Texas, he spent a couple of years talking with TSS about the opportunities there.
“I did a lot of ground research, while also researching competitors,” Jason said. “I looked at the population, demographics, and possibilities–allowing myself to fully understand what I would be getting into. Owning a business wasn’t my plan from the get-go, but it was too good of a plan to turn down.”
Michael found the opportunity enticing too. He loved the idea of having the freedom to run his business the way he wanted.
“I was coming off active duty and wondering what I was going to do,” Michael said. “I spent a lot of time thinking about whether I was going to take a corporate job and take care of someone else’s products or build my own. I decided to work where I could build the business and run it the way I wanted.”
The flexibility of building and running a sports photography business with TSS Photography made the decision easier.
“I am still active duty with the Navy and I plan to retire in about two years,” Jason said. “I chose to move forward when I did, so when I retire I hope to be able to walk into a full-time career with our photography business.”
Jason wasn’t the only one who felt the situation was right for moving forward.
“I’ve had a tough time finding something that felt right,” Michael said. “It seemed hard to get very far with other jobs while continuing to serve as a Navy Reservist. When I had the opportunity to partner with another person with similar values–honor, courage, and commitment–I decided this was a decision I could trust.
Why they love their franchise
Jason and Michael shared several reasons why they started the franchise and why they continue to be excited to build it.
“You can take on as much or as little work as you want,” Jason said. “You can schedule around your active duty schedule and build the business at your own pace. There’s not a lot of maintenance required. It was a low-cost startup and it was easy to see how the business model worked.”
Michael had some ideas of his own, which were born from his experience in the Navy.
“I have been a network engineer and supply officer and I’ve done a lot of different things,” Michael said. “I’ve had a computer business and regular corporate jobs. Learning how advanced TSS Photography is and that TSS is on the leading edge with technical systems–that spoke to my technological side. It helped me learn to redirect some of my abilities on the computer side.”
Both men mentioned that being part of a team was important to them.
“It works out well for us,” Michael said. “I handle more of the computer side of the house, while Jason handles more of the photography side. We both have a background in marketing and are able to sell our services to potential clients.”
The support of the broader TSS Photography network is a key factor in their happiness and success.
“Since I worked with another franchise owner in the past, I had a head start,” Jason admitted. “We were able to quickly go to TSS University–an intense training at the headquarters in Oklahoma City. We learned a ton about the core of the business.”
Advice to others looking at TSS Photography
Jason and Michael are proud of the business they are building and enjoy the fact that TSS Photography franchisees aren’t in competition with each other. Michael says it best when he said it “is a ‘we’ situation. When one of us does well, we all do well.”
They’ve got a few words of advice for those still looking for their perfect photography franchise to buy.
“I would tell someone thinking about buying a TSS Photography franchise to go for it,” Jason said. “Everything was pretty transparent throughout the entire process. I would say photography is probably 25 percent of our work, with sales and building relationships rounding out the rest.”
He did have one piece of advice for people who weren’t comfortable speaking in front of others. He said you should “brush up on speaking in front of large groups.” Presenting to decision makers is a large part of the job.
Jason wasn’t the only one with advice. Michael had a few thoughts for anyone interested in a sports photography business.
“Know your market and know what you’re good at,” he said. “We started out on the sports side of the house because we weren’t very familiar with the school photography. Nine months later, we had learned enough to be comfortable selling our product for picture day at our area schools. It’s also important to learn how to reach out to the other franchise owners. Don’t be afraid to not know something.”
What are you waiting for?
Are you looking for your forever career? Do you want to run your own business and set your own schedule? It’s easy to learn more about the process of buying a TSS Photography franchise. You can start by downloading additional information.
If you’re still unsure, or simply want to hear stories from more TSS Photography franchisees who are veterans, read “Veterans Plant Their Flag with TSS Photography.”