Look around you, every material object you see, started out as a thought in some man’s mind. The car you drive, the bricks that form your home, the toaster you used for breakfast this morning, the plate you ate from, the cell phone that you can’t put down. All things (material objects) have their origin in the mind of man, and the manifestation of these objects are the result of Thought.
The mind of man is creative. It must be understood that this creative power originates not in the mind of man but in the “Universal Mind”(God), the source of all power, wisdom, and intelligence. This “Universal Mind” is omnipresent, omnipotent, and omniscience.
Being omnipresent, mind permeates all things and all space. “The ALL(God) is in Everything, and Everything is in the ALL(God)” This means that the essence of God resides within you, and all individuals. (“ The Kingdom of God is Within”) We are Individualized Spirit. All your power comes from within.
This mind permeates every cell of your body in the form of negative energy. We have come to understand that this energy comprises our “subconscious mind” it acts without our conscious knowledge. This subconscious mind is our true connection between God, the universe, and our conscious mind.
The Universal Mind and You
“God made man in His own image” (Spiritual Image). A through examination of the word man will bring you to its origin, which is the word mind. Now replace the word man with the word mind. The scripture will then read “God made mind in His own image”. Thus, the mind of man is a part of the Universal Mind. It should be noted that a part of anything possesses the same substance and quality of that from which it comes. The only difference is one of degree.
The subconscious mind is the connecting link between the Universal mind and the conscious mind of man. Our subconscious mind is responsive to the desires (will) of our conscious mind.
The conscious mind is the positive energy of thought. The only activity of mind is thinking. Our conscious mind thinks, and impresses upon our negatively charged subconscious mind, which is the connecting link between you, and the Universal Mind(God). This connection produces the power necessary to cause the manifestation of that particular thought. Making your conscious mind the creator of things, environments, and circustances.
Be very careful, your creative conscious mind is susceptible to all forms of influence, gathered in by your senses, what you hear, see, smell, taste, and or feel. Your thoughts are not only influenced by impressions from your senses, but they are also affected by your beliefs, most of which are received via heredity. Your beliefs guide and direct your thoughts, therefore shape your reality. (circumstances, environments) It must be noted that your deeply ingrained beliefs can be either empowering or disempowering. Examine all your beliefs.
I must take a moment to enlighten you to that most of us are oppressed, and subjugated. We have an oppressor in some form or another, whether it be in the form of government or some elitist power. This oppression is rooted in consumerism. As a consumer you are the power that fuels our intricately “constructed society”. And, your beliefs are shaped to keep us in that position. You can only change your position by becoming a producer, thereby lessening the effects of consumerism.
Your subconscious receives all thoughts both good and bad it does not discriminate. If your thoughts are of peace, love, wealth and happiness, your circumstance and environment will be good. But, if your thoughts are based on fear, poverty, and lack, your thoughts will manifest circumstances accordingly. You have been given the power to think on the level of “The Absolute’(God), now use that power.
You Are a Creator
Now that you understand that you are a creator, what are you going to create? Are you going to continue to create bad circumstances by harboring thoughts of poverty and lack, based on fear? Or, are you going to think thoughts of joy, peace, and abundance? Resulting in a life of true happiness filled with good health, wealth, and love.
The power of thought could be considered to be man’s greatest discovery. I submit to you that the major difference between the super rich and the common man is this discovery and the use of it’s power.
There are those who made this discovery and have used this power to create large amount of wealth. Then, there are those who have made this discovery and have not acted on it.
Then there are those who are just now becoming aware. Now that you are beginning to develop this understanding, what are you going to do with it? What kind of lifestyle do you wish to manifest?
If you have found yourself here on this page because you want to RETIRE and create your own LIFESTYLE, become fully FINANCIALLY SELF-RELIANT, and you also absolutely love the idea of being able to LIVE ANYWHERE, then this could well be exactly what you're looking for.
More and more people are looking for a realistic way to RETIRE and actually INCREASE THEIR INCOME while living a lifestyle of complete freedom. I can tell you that it is absolutely realistic and more so than ever in today's digital world.
In my retirement what was really important to me was not just the fact I wanted to be able to make money with my own business. But I wanted to find something I could really believe in and enjoy. I wanted to follow the advice of one of my favorite motivational gurus Tony Robbins and set myself up with a business that would not just bring success, but fulfillment as well.
“Success without fulfillment is the ultimate failure”. - Tony Robbins.
What kind of retirement business is right for you?
For me the most important thing was finding a business I could build around what I like to do. When you work doing what you enjoy, you no longer consider it to be work. So offer a product or service that resonates around that which you most enjoy. For me it is photography. As an affiliate marketer, I am developing products and services base on my niche of photography.
Like the famous author, Robert Kiyosaki states, you should start with anything that is very product-driven and extremely easy to fulfill on. Something you believe in and feel confident selling. It needs to be a product or service you can sell many times over every week without spending a lot of your personal time on customer service and support or transactions.
Get started with Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is a great one to start with. This is where you sell other businesses products and get a commission – without having to do any fulfillment or delivery. If you're an affiliate, the amount of products you can sell is unlimited. And the beauty of it is that you can sell those products or services many times over, 24/7, 365 days a year. So even when you're on the beach or sleeping, you are busy growing your income as you grow your sales.
Another option is to sell physical products with an E-commerce business. With physical products, you don't have to reinvent the wheel. You can order existing products in bulk at a fraction of the cost and then set up a sales system.
Opportunities like Amazon FBA will do the heavy lifting for you. They will process the payments from customers and deal with the packaging, distribution, and customer service. In the meantime, you'll get busy selling the products and setting up marketing and ad campaigns to make those sales happen – which you can do from ANYWHERE in just one or two hours a day.
Whatever you're selling, the first 10 sales are going to be the hardest. But once you've made your first double figures in sales, you'll gain the confidence that you can rinse and repeat – and grow. You'll learn exactly how many sales you need to be making each week and each month to reach your goals.
People always want the ultimate answer to the question "how long is it going to take?" But I've seen so much diversity – from 2 days to 12 months to make the first 10 sales. It comes down to whether you picked the right product for the market at the current time – and your commitment to learning the digital skills you need to succeed.
If you are serious about getting a business started and you're looking for a genuine way to do it as a retiree, without having to break the bank and at the same time not have a ceiling on your income potential.
Then be sure to check out this FREE video series that's been responsible for helping THOUSANDS of people just like you to start an online business from scratch and around their day jobs.
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If you want to learn how to become a travel photographer, you in the right place.
It was a beautiful day in Montreal. I was on a regular afternoon jog listening to a popular photography podcast. The topic of the episode was travel photography. The guests of the show were two professional photographers with the years of experience.
At the end of the podcast during the listeners’ question and answer session, the first question immediately grabbed my attention. Why? Because I’ve been asked the same, or nearly identical, question many times before.
So what’s the question?
“I want to start traveling more specifically for photography, but I do not know where to start. Do you have any idea where I should go or how to plan my trip? Should I edit photos while I am there or should I wait until I return home? What cameras, lenses and other equipment do I take? Help! I am suffering from analysis paralysis“. Ok, so perhaps the question has multiple parts but it still rang true to my experience. I was curious to hear the answers because I knew it was a loaded question and definitely not an easy one.
The photographers’ answers surprised me.
Here are some of them:
“South Asia is a good place to go.”“Do not go to Bangkok.”“If you do not know, choose a place randomly.”“Europe, maybe.” Instead of addressing the complex subject of travel photography, the photographers only concentrated on a single aspect: the location. Their answers disappointed me because I do not consider the location to be an essential part of travel photography. You do not need to travel to a remote and exotic destination to enjoy travel photography.
A simple 4-step process on how to become a travel photographer
I decided to put together a blueprint or guide to help people who want to get involved in travel photography but do not know where to start. I used a similar approach when I first started and it has proven successful over the years.
First and foremost, please do not start your travel photography journey with a trip to South Asia. It will be a waste of time and money, not to mention it will be full of disappointments.
Start smaller and grow from there.
Any urban park has all the essential elements of travel photography: landscapes, cityscapes, people, etc….
Plan your visits during different times of the day. Learn how to deal with the harsh midday light, overcast, rain, sunsets and sunrises. In doing so, you will figure out what minimum equipment you need to cover different scenarios of travel photography.
For example, I realized pretty early that a minimalistic approach to photography suits me the best and all I need is a camera with a walk around lens. For years, I used a combination of a Canon 60D + Sigma 17-70mm and now I have a similar setup of a Sony a6000 + Sony 16-70mm.
I am lucky enough to have a beautiful park in only short walking distance from where I live. Even now, when I have a new piece of equipment, I always test it there. When I switched from a Canon to a Sony, it was a steep learning curve and the local park was the ideal place for learning and testing my new equipment.
Now that it is winter, I ordered new photo gloves and, when I receive them, I will go to the park for a few hours to see if I like them or not.
Park Rene Levesque in Montreal is my testing ground
Step 2: Mini Simulation
The next step is to go on a day-long trip at a location within a 1-2-hour driving range. In my case, I know all the national and provincial parks around Montreal and most of them make perfect destinations for short photo trips.
This trip will take you away from the comfort of your home for the entire day and will allow you to start micro planning and testing your skills.
Make sure you plan in advance what spot to visit at sunset or sunrise. It is not always easy to do both during a short trip, so choose only one and make sure you visit the best spot. Use Google search, Google maps, and 500px to pinpoint the perfect location for your sunrise or sunset shoot.
Also, you have to decide how many camera batteries to bring with you, if you need spare memory cards, and so on. If your trip involves challenging hiking, it also might be a good idea to leave the tripod at home.
These trips are designed for photographers to make mistakes and to learn from them. With every new trip, you will learn more about planning, your equipment, and your habits.
When you comfortable with the short trips, it is time to graduate to multi-day trips.
Mont-Saint-Bruno national park is only 30km from Montreal
Step 3: Multi-Day Driving Trips
This is how real travel photography started for me.
Montreal is located within a 5-7 hour driving distance from New York, Boston and Toronto with Niagara Falls. My trips dedicated exclusively to photography started with 2-3 day driving trips to those destinations.
Multi-days trips require much more planning where you should always do your research first and then plan all your sunrises, sunsets and everything in between.
Another new challenge you have to face on these trips is to figure out how to deal with editing and backups.
I am not giving you a specific scenario to follow because, based on my experience, travel routines are always changing and evolving.
For example, in the beginning, I always did some basic edits of my new photos by the end of every day of the trip. Now, I only concentrate on my shooting and I start the editing process when I am back at home. But, I always have the option to edit photos simply by connecting my tablet to camera using Wi-Fi, grabbing a few photos, editing them with Snapseed and posting them to social media.
At the same time, my backup routine has not changed a lot. By the end of the day, I backup all new photos to two external hard drives and always make sure to keep them in two separate places. I have one with me at all times in my bag and the second I keep in the safe in the hotel or in the trunk of my car.
Also, I do not rush to format my memory cards. I keep photos on the cards until I run out of space on all four of them and only then do I start formatting.
The beauty of driving trips is that you do not have to be too selective about the equipment you bring with you. You can load your trunk with everything you own and later figure out what pieces are essential for your style of photography.
New York. Taken from Staten Island Ferry.
Step 4: Hacking Family Vacation
The next step is to hack your family vacation.
You have to be careful with this one so as to ensure you do not agitate your loved ones or ruin the vacation for them.
A family trip can serve as the perfect opportunity for testing your air travel routines. It requires additional research to figure out carry on allowances on every leg of your trip and to decide what equipment to bring.
After I brought all my equipment on one of my first family trips to Cuba and hardly used any of it, I started to pack differently by bringing only the necessities along. Also, after I switched from DSLR to Mirrorless, I can pack everything (almost everything) in my carry on without worrying about lost luggage.
So how do you start planning?
Begin by planning your vacation as you normally would and concentrate on family activities first. When these are done and everybody is happy, you can enhance your trip with photography adventures.
During the vacation, the only time when you can be 100% dedicated to your photography is when everybody is sleeping. On each day of vacation you will have a few hours between sunrise and breakfast to concentrate on your photography. And, not only will your family be in bed at 5 am, about 99.9% of tourists will be in their beds as well. In fact, you would be surprised how beautiful Venice looks at sunrise – it is completely different and calm without the chaos of crowds.
Cuba. Sunrise at Cayo Coco beach.
Last year, my wife and I went to Niagara Falls in the middle of summer on a weekend getaway. It was so crowded during the day that I had no chance of using a tripod. It was even difficult to take any pictures without having people in the frame. But, when I went to the Falls the next morning just before sunrise, I had the entire place to myself. The only person I met there was another photographer who had the same idea.
The goal of successfully combining a family vacation with photography and to be able to enjoy them both is to plan every single sunrise in advance. The rest of the days will be dedicated to family activities and are much more difficult to plan. You can enjoy your family while trying to be as opportunistic as possible with your photography.
After you have completed dozens of one-day local trips, half a dozen of short driving trips and at least a couple of family vacations, you will be ready to go on extensive trips dedicated exclusively to photography. You will acquire the necessary skills and establish personal routines that will help you be comfortable, confident and safe during your travels.
Learning any new complex process requires breaking it down into smaller digestible chunks that you can then start to tackle one at a time. Travel photography is no different. You cannot learn everything in one shot. By starting small, you will gradually accumulate knowledge, experience and establish your unique routines.
I hope my simple blueprint will help you fulfill your dream of becoming a travel photographer and accelerate the learning process.
By Viktor Elizarov
I am a travel photographer and educator from Montreal, Canada, and a founder of PhotoTraces. I travel around the world and share my experiences here. Feel free to check my Travel Portfolio and download Free Lightroom Presets.
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In 1907, Auguste and Louis Lumière presented autochrome—a revolutionary method for reproducing color in photographs. The world was stunned and enraptured. “Soon the world will be color-mad,” photographer Alfred Stieglitz wrote that July from Munich. “And Lumière will be responsible.”
We’ve come a long way in the last century, and we no longer need potato starch—the crucial ingredient in the autochrome process—to render color. But the power of color hasn’t faded over time; all these decades later, the world is still color-mad.
While you can find color theory in any painting classroom, it remains a somewhat overlooked field in the world of photography, so we’re devoting a three-part series of articles to examine colors and the relationships between them. This is just part one–an introduction to the color wheel–so keep an eye out for the rest in the coming months.
The Color Wheel
A color wheel is just a convenient way of visualizing the relationships between colors. The most common wheel used by painters is based on RYB color system–where red, yellow, and blue are the primary colors. Mix those colors, and you end up with secondary colors orange, green, and violet. Combining those results in one of six tertiary colors: red-orange, yellow-orange, yellow-green, blue-green, blue-violet, or red-violet.
Sometimes, however, photographers might use the RGB system–in which case, red, green, and blue are the primaries. Mixing these colors will create secondary colors yellow, cyan, and magenta. The RGB system also has six tertiary colors: orange, chartreuse green, spring green, azure, violet, or rose.
In this brief introduction, we’ll look at six easy ways photographers can use the color wheel and simple “color schemes” to strengthen their compositions. While photographers can certainly use the RGB system, we’ll rely on RYB for right now.
A monochromatic color scheme uses one of the twelve colors on the color wheel with different tints, shades, and tones. You create a tint by adding white to your base color, a shade by adding black, and a tone by adding gray. Photographers can use these schemes to create harmony throughout a composition.
Puchong Pannoi’s photograph of the ancient city of Bagan in Myanmar has many layers, from temples to trees to a hot air balloon floating in the distance. While these elements could be distracting in the eyes of another photographer, Pannoi has brought them all together beautifully–with a little help from a monochromatic palette.
Monochromatic color schemes can often be bold. According to photography legend, Ansel Adams was once so displeased upon seeing one of William Eggleston’s most famous monochromatic photos that he remarked, “If you can’t make it good, make it red.” Fortunately, these days dramatic color is not only accepted but embraced–with stunning results. Take a cue from 500px Contributor Estislav Ploshtakov, and use it to make a strong impact.
For a complementary color palette, use two colors on opposite sides of the color wheel. Complementary color schemes are well-suited for photography because they add contrast–resulting in pictures that “pop” off the page and screen. Here, Da Miane uses complementary colors green and red.
In this street photo from Singapore, Peter Stewart uses complementary colors blue and orange. No need for an overly complex composition–these colors catch our eye all on their own.
In this variation on a complementary color scheme, you’ll select your base color, and then instead of using the color directly opposite, you’ll use the two colors on either side of it.
In this colorful photo, Claudio de Sat photographs the blue sky against the architecture of East Berlin’s Plattenbauten buildings. He then incorporates hues closer to red-orange and yellow-orange on the color wheel. The result is a striking and harmonious photo with a little bit less of the dramatic tension we’re used to seeing in photos with complementary colors.
A tetradic color scheme, sometimes called double-complementary, features a total of four colors, including two sets of complementary colors. Of the basic color schemes we’ll cover here, this one might be the trickiest to pull off–if only for the fact that it incorporates four colors.
This photo by Alena Haurylik does it brilliantly. By using two complementary pairs (orange-blue, green-red) in moderation, it succeeds in being both eye-catching and sophisticated.
Analogous color schemes incorporate three colors that sit next to each other on the color wheel. Wildlife photographer Jonne Seijdel encountered this dazzling Rwenzori three-horned chameleon while traveling through the Rwenzori mountains in Uganda. In this photo, he was able to include side-by-side colors for a pleasing and dynamic result. Perhaps unsurprisingly, given this example, analogous colors are often found in nature.
When using analogous colors, photographers usually choose one dominant color and then use the others in a supporting role. Designers use what they call the “60-30-10 rule”–meaning that the main color (usually primary or secondary) takes up 60% of the space, while a supporting color (secondary or tertiary) takes up 30%, and the final color takes up just 10%.
This photograph by Jovana Rikalo, appropriately titled Orange Dream, features mainly the color orange, with red and yellow accents.
A triadic color scheme comprises any three colors that are evenly spaced around the color wheel. Like complementary colors, these schemes are vibrant and full of contrast. In the majority of situations, these will be the three primary or secondary colors. 500px Contributor Sabrina Hb’s portrait of a woman and fruit in Colombia might be called Yellow, but those touches of blue and red on the woman’s dress complete the photo–giving it that extra “oomph” and vitality.
Designers generally recommend sticking to the three primary or three secondary colors for that “clean” look. Use too many tertiary colors, and you run the risk of a photo that looks muddy. This landscape by Gunar Streu is another perfect example of color done right because it uses the three secondary colors of the RYB color system: orange, violet, and green.
While color theory might be easiest to implement in the studio, these talented photographers remind us that photographers of any genre, from street to wildlife to architecture, can use it to their advantage. Color is a photographer’s playground. Experiment with different schemes, and see what works best for you. We’ll see you again in part two of this three-part series on color theory.
While color theory might be easiest to implement in the studio, these talented photographers remind us that photographers of any genre, from street to wildlife to architecture, can use it to their advantage. Color is a photographer’s playground. Experiment with different schemes, and see what works best for you.
Stay tuned for part two of this three-part series on color theory.
In 1797, the engraver and painter John Thomas Smith, who worked as the keeper of prints at the British Museum, came up with a revolutionary theory.
In his view, landscape paintings worked best not when sky and land were given equal weight, but when one or the other took up an entire two-thirds of the canvas. Contrary to popular wisdom, which favored the “formal half” or a one-to-one ratio, he wondered if the most appealing compositions, in fact, featured a different ratio altogether: one-to-two.
Smith’s theory predates the invention of the camera by about twenty years, but these days, we know it as one of the guiding principles of photography. Now, when we discuss composition, we still use the same term Smith coined all those years ago: the rule of thirds.
Once you understand this common photographic technique, you can learn to position your subject in any image so that the photo is both visually balanced and interesting to your viewers. In this article, we’ll explore the rule of thirds and how you can use it to your advantage.
What is the rule of thirds?
The rule of thirds is one of the easiest ways to experiment with your composition; it is simply a matter of placing the elements in your image so that each of them carries the proper amount of visual weight.
Imagine you are looking at a tic-tac-toe board. Notice how the lines on that board create three distinct horizontal sections and three distinct vertical sections. There are also four points where the lines intersect. According to the rule of thirds, placing your subject along a line or point on this grid will create a more dynamic composition.
You have the option to view a rule of thirds grid as an overlay in your DSLR viewfinder, and you can even look for a grid option in the camera settings on your phone. This can be helpful when you’re practicing the rule of thirds, but be wary of using it too much as it may interfere with your ability to visualize other compositions while you shoot. The best way to master the rule of thirds is to practice visualizing it in your mind.
How to use the rule of thirds
New photographers tend to put their subjects in the very center of the frame. While this can result in a strong composition under the right circumstances, it can also create static images that lack interest.
This is partly due to the way our eyes view a scene: they naturally try to follow the lines and points on the grid, even when the grid is not visible. It’s also due to another compositional element: balanced asymmetry. Usually, your subject will already carry the greatest impact out of all the elements in your image, so it wields a lot of visual weight. By positioning the subject so that it takes up approximately one-third of the image, you’re leaving enough negative space to balance that weight.
In landscapes Try aligning your horizon line with one of the two horizontal lines on the grid. This keeps your viewer’s eye from getting stuck going side to side. If the sky is distractingly bright, this is an easy way to balance that punch of brightness with the more muted detail in the land portion of your image.
In portraiture The eyes are usually the focus of a portrait, so try to line up your model’s eyes along the grid to give them high visual exposure. For group portraits, use stools, steps, or natural height strategically to utilize different areas of the grid.
Some things to consider
The rule of thirds is a great “cheat sheet” for getting dynamic compositions out of almost any scene. However, it’s not always the best choice for every photo. If you’re shooting in one of the following circumstances, the rule of thirds might not be right for your image.
You want something to have a larger-than-life effect Platon is famous for his in-your-face portraits of celebrities and world leaders. You really get a sense of who they are, and for that kind of impact, the subject is the only thing that matters. Although some of his other work does use the rule of thirds, these pieces would only be hindered by it.
If you already use the rule of thirds too frequently This rule is meant to stimulate creativity, not inhibit it. If you’ve come to rely heavily on the rule of thirds and notice that a lot of your work is looking eerily similar, it may be time to try something new.
You’re battling lens distortion If you’re using a wide-angle lens, placing your subject in one of the outer thirds could cause them to appear too distorted. If that’s not the effect you are going for, switch lenses or switch photography rules.
The rule of thirds in post-processing
Sometimes we want a rule of thirds composition, but due to shooting circumstances, it’s not easy or possible on-location. If you’re shooting macro photography of insects, for example, you’re already using a lot of mental energy just to get the right point of focus before your subject moves on. In a situation like that, it can help to shoot just a little wider than you think you need. That leaves you room to crop for the rule of thirds in post-processing.
If you plan to do this, check your camera settings before you shoot. Be sure you are shooting in RAW and give yourself a nice, high-resolution file to work with so that you aren’t cropping away all of your image quality. Keep a copy of the original image in your backups in case you need to go back to the drawing board.
If you simply want to enhance the rule of thirds effect, you can use an adjustment layer mask (or in Lightroom, an adjustment brush) to draw attention to elements that line up with the grid. You can add a little pop of saturation, enhance the brightness, or do some selective sharpening to draw attention to those areas.
Practice is all it takes to master this rule completely. Try setting up a dedicated shoot for this technique and see how many different compositions you can think of. When you walk around without your camera, try visualizing compositions from the things you see around you that follow the rule of thirds. You can also gain a lot of inspiration from finding examples of images that use the rule of thirds to analyze.
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James Maher is a New York Photographer, a huge Knicks fan, and a lifelong New Yorker who got his driver’s license at 30 years old — as any true Manhattanite should. Maher never took the conventional route. His love of photography started with using Photoshop to make fake driver license IDs at the University of Madison with his college roommates.
Over time, he grew his business to offer an eclectic mix of products and services — including photography print sales, a portrait business, conducting workshops, creating online content, and authoring three books. Despite having a diverse business, COVID-19 still shut down his business along with the rest of New York.
He knew he had to transition some of his business online, so he took some time to look at short-term revenue options that could set him up for long-term growth. He began brainstorming how he could re-create traditional in-person experiences into new online opportunities.
In order to do so, he followed 5 essential steps to grow his email list and pivot his business to an online format.
The 5 essential steps to growing your list
Step 1: Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO is a process of optimizing your website to get organic (or unpaid) traffic. Maher drives traffic by regularly providing unique, engaging, and free content on his site for people interested in learning about photography.
For example, he gives away a free New York travel photography guide on his website. This free guide is an essential part of Maher’s SEO and content marketing strategy.
Although each audience member will receive multiple emails in the sequence, Maher reminds them at the top of each email of the content they may have missed or that will be coming in a future email.
Each email includes thought-provoking images and step-by-step instructions for other photographers.
“My email list was always vital and incredibly important to my business, but it’s even more important now because I have started to transition to more online content,” says Maher.
Step 4: Let analytics be your content compass
AWeber’s analytics help guide Maher determine the type of content he sends and when. “It gives me a lot of information about how my information is perceived, and if the content is engaging,” says Maher.
Maher reviews regularly both the open and the click-through rate on the content that he sends. Sending engaging content has allowed him to attract new audiences to his email list.
Step 5: Expand your reach
Maher uses his downtime to set himself up for long-term success by creating content and online products to grow his email list.
His latest online product, “Editing and Putting Together a Portfolio in Street Photography,” drove revenue and allowed him to promote some of his other services like individual portfolio reviews.
While social distancing is still in place in New York City, Maher takes time to introduce himself to as many new groups of people as possible. For example, he gives photography zoom presentations to groups and camera clubs around the country. Most people who attend the presentation visit his website and join his email list.
Promote to your own email list
Maher also promotes the new online course to his email audience.
During this time, when many members of his audience have reduced income, Maher has adjusted his payment model to “pay what you can.”
The suggested price for the online class is $25. The average payment turned out to be about $25 because some people were getting it for free or $5, but some people paid $50 or $100.
“I’m going to do that going forward for more of my products now. It provides me some income and builds my emails list, so it is a win-win for everyone.” says Maher.
Take advantage of lower advertising rates to promote on social media
The rates for advertising are much lower than usual due to COVID-19, so it is a great time to promote posts on social media to stand out from the crowd.
Maher uses Facebook ads to target local photographers in the Northeast. They see the ad, download the photography travel guide, and are added to his AWeber list.
AWeber then sends an automated email sequence that lets them get to know Maher, learn photography tips, and get a sense of the type of content they will receive from going forward.
“I’m testing and tweaking the Facebook ad a bit now given that people aren’t really traveling to New York with COVID-19 going on. But I’m finding that it’s still doing very well at converting photographers, particularly with the cheaper ad pricing. If you provide them with good, interesting content, you can grow your list,” says Maher.
Short term cash needs can translate into long term growth
Maher has shifted his business’s focus toward creating online experiences that provide short-term revenue that keeps his business going. He created online classes about photo editing and online photography portfolio reviews. He even started working with photographers to help them create portfolio websites.
Every post, promotion, or email drives people to his sign up forms with the end goal of growing his email list.
The creation of each online product is just the first phase of its product life. “Each online product will eventually integrate into a bigger package in the long term. I’ve been building this business for about 17 years, and I had the formula down — but COVID-19 broke the formula,” says Maher.
“The silver lining is COVID-19 gave me the time to execute on ideas I always had in the back of my head. I believe my business is going to come out of COVID-19 stronger and more prepared for the future.”
Connect with your audience and start growing your email list today!
With AWeber, you’ll get everything you need to grow your own business online — including sign up forms, newsletters, landing pages, and access to our award-winning customer solutions team.
In today’s highly competitive market for photography, it is not an easy task to build your brand and have people notice you. Now days, you need to stand out from the rest of the crowd and bring people in. If you’ve wondered how to market your photography, look no further. In this article, I am going to over my top 3 ways to market not only my pictures, but my business as a whole.
If you are looking to save money and also grow your sales skills, try going business to business or calling local stores to ask if you can display your work or leave flyers or business cards with them. I have found out that the majority of businesses welcomed it! I started by going to three of the busiest towns in my area and spoke personally to every business I could. After introducing myself, I let them know that I was looking to possibly leave some business cards and flyers, in hopes of gaining new clients. If they showed interest, I would continue by telling them more about my business model. By doing this, if any customers had questions, they might be able to answer a simple yes or no question, which will lead to them taking your card or flyer.
As time went on, I found myself extending my range of towns, and going even further to neighboring communities. I also included areas that were not very high traffic, because you never know who will be looking to have work done. Once I had a blog/website, I would offer to put their business on my page and help promote them as well!
This leads me into my next part of marketing, which is having a visual website of some sort. When I first started out, I had a blog from Blogspot. It was something that I was able to post my work, and considering it is a free service, it was great for just starting off. Just recently I was able to get an actual website, and I would definitely suggest this. Having the versatility of different layouts you can have to display your work they way you want is a huge plus.
The way you create your website is key to marketing your business. When someone visits your webpage, they want to know automatically were they are at, and what the page is about. For example, on my website I have the title at the top in a bold font, with my tagline, logo, picture of me with my contact information and my gallery at the top. I place this at this top because the customer can automatically get a sense about what they are going to be looking at, and the quality of work that I do.
Sending out a marketing email is a tactic that brings in a lot of customers for me. This is something that you can put a lot of information into and add your own little touches for a personal design. When a client opens a marketing blast, you want them to be drawn into something at the very top of the page, in order to get them to scroll down more. In my marketing blast emails, I have a headline at the top of the email that says either HUGE SALE, or BOOKING SPECIAL in bold colors and a font that really pops, because if you can catch their attention with the title and headline, then they will want to scroll more to see what it is all about.
Lastly, I have found that Facebook Ads are extremely helpful! At first I was not sure how I felt about paying for Facebook advertisements, but taking what I have learned from my email blasts and applying that to the Facebook ads really made it a game changer. The nice thing about Facebook ads is that you can create your own graphic and then hit boost post to really get it out to the public.
Once you have your ad graphically ready, you upload it to Facebook, and then you can choose your target audience. This is a huge part of getting the word out there, it will allow you to choose male or female, age groups, the location you want, and also add keywords that might be on users pages, such as pregnant, or senior pictures, even marriage. By doing this you can get the exact group of people you are looking to market to.
Another great part of using Facebook ads is that you can set your budget and how long you want to run the ad for. If you only have a budget for $20.00 that’s all you have to pay. It will tell you how many people it is expected to reach and spread out the post evenly across all of the days you want to run it for. You also have the option to add more money and extend the ad run-time, if you choose to. At the end of your ad run, you will get a detailed report of how many people saw your post, clicked on the ad, where they were from, male or female and age range, etc. so you can define your next post even more. See below for an example of one of my ads.
Whether you are going business to business and asking to leave your card or flyer at the front of their store, ramping up your website, or even starting to try out Facebook ads, there is always some way to market yourself. The best part is, with all of the technology we have at hand, it doesn’t have to cost you a lot of money. Building a business is hard work, and it takes a lot of determination to make it a success, but if you believe in yourself and use multiple avenues for marketing, your success will become a reality very soon.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ryan Jakubowski My name is Ryan Jakubowski and I have been doing photography for the last 10+ years. It has grown from an interest into a strong passion of mine that I will never stop doing. I decided to start my business, J&C Photography, over 7 years ago and it continues to take off each year! I photograph a number of different events such as weddings, senior portraits, newborns and even the severe weather that comes across the state of Michigan. For me every shoot is something new, and brings with it its own experience, and that is what keeps bringing me back every time.
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