Archive for July, 2009

What do your photos say about you?

Thursday, July 16th, 2009

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JULY 16, 2009

I met today with Rich Brooks, president of flyte new media (www.flyte.biz) in Portland. He is a web design and business marketing specialist, with a voluminous knowledge of social networking sites and how to use them to advance a company’s marketing goals. He gave me some insight about how to use my blog more effectively. Up till now, I have been using it as a creative outlet, a way to share my personal vision through photography. Rich showed me that I could also be sharing my expertise in how companies can use photos effectively in their advertising or marketing campaigns. I now plan to incorporate advice in this area into my blog in addition to my personal photos and my ongoing Scarborough 350 project.

 

Today’s question is whether the photos on your website reinforce your corporate identity. Whether you’re using stock photography or having a professional come on site to produce custom photos, make sure that the visuals match your message. If you make hand-crafted, one of a kind items, you’ll want to have pictures that show your attention to detail. Photos that are poorly lit, that have bad shadows, that aren’t as finely crafted as the products you make will tell prospective customers that you are sloppy, not detail-oriented. If your company’s key to success is superior customer service, but the photos on your site are generic, stock shots of sunsets or landscapes, or, worse, pictures of your offices or equipment with no people in them, you’ll be missing the warmth that can be seen in the human interaction of your staff with your clients — the thing that will make prospective clients interested in doing business with you. If you serve a young, hip clientele, are your photos bold, bright, edgy and shot from interesting angles, or do you have a bunch of boring, line-‘em-up pictures that don’t tantalize the eye? Matching your photographic images to your corporate image will bring consistency and clarity to your message and help establish your brand.

Wet blanket.

Thursday, July 2nd, 2009

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JULY 2, 2009
Summers in Maine are short, but this year’s seems exceptionally so. I called the National Weather Service in Gray this afternoon to get the grim figures. According to the agent I spoke with, in June we only had three cloud-free days, and the temperature never broke the 80 degree mark. And then there was the rain — lots of rain — 8.5 inches of rain, nearly two and a half times what is normal for the month. Sad to say, but July is following in June’s footsteps.

I couldn’t take one more day of sitting inside, staring at my computer screen all day, so camera in hand, I set out for Old Orchard Beach to see what was happening in that seaside resort town. I usually avoid going there in the summer because it gets so packed with people, and it’s impossible to find parking. As I drove along East Grand Ave., motel after motel sported Vacancy signs. Parking spots were abundant as only a handful of tourists braved the rain and walked through downtown. Normally on a July 4th weekend the beach would be wall-to-wall with sunbathers, but it looked more like a winter scene.

I snapped a shot of one of the vendors at Bill’s Pizza, situated a stone’s throw from the beach and the amusement park, as she stared out across the street, nary a customer in sight. Upon inquiry, I learned that on a typical summer day the shop sells 400 pizzas — today it was 20. With all the challenges we’ve been facing in this tough economy, does Mother Nature really have to pile on the misery? So many of the businesses in OOB are seasonal, depending on a few months to earn the bulk of their income. There are no government bailouts for this sector of the economy, though.