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Check Out Bethany McCamish’s Story

Today we’d like to introduce you to Bethany McCamish.

Hi Bethany, it’s an honor to have you on the platform. Thanks for taking the time to share your story with us – to start maybe you can share some of your backstory with our readers?
Hi! I’m Bethany McCamish, brand strategist and founder of Bethany Works®, a full-service design studio. Before founding Bethany Works®, I spent five years as an English teacher and graphic design instructor building a regionally recognized curriculum. For more than seven years, I was integrated in the Pacific Northwest arts community, running and curating shows that tell a story, all while sharpening my communication skills.

My journey to owning my own business started with a personal finance blog, probably the exact opposite of what you may expect from a full-time designer. As a teacher, I was working on getting my finances in order with my partner and pursuing financial independence. We started a blog to document our journey. My partner soon realized blogging was not for him, but I was hooked. The blog and my writing brought me coverage from CNBC, Forbes, Business Insider, and two Plutus Award Nominations. That blog also connected me to a whole new world of individuals running online-only businesses and led to my very first freelance clients. I wrote for Business Insider, Student Loan Planner, and so many more companies. While this was enjoyable, my degree was in the arts (BFA) and only secondarily English. The arts, including design and photography, was my passion. So when a friend from the online community approached me about doing freelance design work, I said yes very enthusiastically. It was the start of something bigger than I even guessed.

I worked full-time teaching during the day and spent my evenings and weekends freelancing for a little over a year. The hustle was real, but I had worked four jobs to get through college, one of them being a small photography side hustle, so I was used to juggling lots of projects. The income from my side hustle of freelance design and writing was quickly matching that of my teaching career. This combined with my partner and I considering a major move for his job, led me to take the leap of quitting my 9-5 and taking my side hustle to a full-fledged business. That move landed us here in Phoenix, AZ where my design studio has taken off. I work specifically with purpose-driven businesses to craft branding that stands out and brand strategy that is backed by psychology. My clients are from all over the United States, but I have found some amazing connections with other small businesswomen in the area that I am so grateful for.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
No, I would not ever say that entrepreneurship is an easy path, but I will say that for me, it was so worth it. I am glad I stuck with my full-time teaching job to build up a client base, as this provided some stability once I made the leap to business owner. That said, there is so much to learn about running a business, so I experienced a learning curve for sure. I also found the work-life balance to be tough. I am always thinking about my next step, how to better serve my clients, and how to grow. I have had to put some healthy boundaries in place to make sure I also focus on the next steps with my family.

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
I am in the creation business. I make ideas a reality-tangible-easily interpreted to an ideal audience. So it felt like a natural progression that I what I made a reality should also make the world a better place. That is why I specifically work with purpose-driven businesses and entrepreneurs.

Over the past year and a half, I have been able to put this into practice by working with businesses and individuals who are giving back to communities, fighting injustice, and shedding light on overlooked or undervalued topics. This could look like donating a consistent amount of profits to a charity each month or the content they produce. The way in which businesses can make a difference and serve a purpose can vary significantly, but I find this to be what makes my job so exciting. I am happy to say that I have never felt more excited to create beautiful branding and websites than when I work with people like this.

We’d love to hear about how you think about risk taking?
Everything you do in business carries risk. It was risky quitting my stable career in education, but it is also risky to put yourself out there as a creative. In general, it is a very undervalued profession or one written off as talent. But branding, brand strategy and website building is an earned skill that allows businesses to target their ideal audiences and increase their revenue. In addition, the work we do as creatives stands the test of time and builds a solid foundation for business growth. I know this, but believing in it every single day and not letting imposter syndrome or the comments of others seep in is the biggest risk of all.

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