Posted in blogs, creative writing, Digital printing, graphic design, newsletters, photography, printing, publishing, small business, small business sales, Uncategorized, video production, web design

Models, Images and Videos: How to do Your Best

Everyone is a designer. Everyone is a photographer. Everyone is a videographer. Or, so it would seem in the new tech world, where we upload and share 1.8 billion photos every day.

But, do you really want to be like everyone else? If you, design, edit or contribute to a newsletter, blog, ad book, webpage, technical report, or simply post on social media streams, there are a few things I’d like you to keep in mind.

The Subject Matters

DragandDrop
© Capitol Copy Service 2014*

Sure, there are candid, in-the-moment photos you can use. And, there are millions of stock photos on the web. But to really illuminate your subject, a professional model is best. For a recent photo display, we used a model. Here’s why:

  • Easy to photograph and takes less time than amateurs
  • Prepares for the photo shoot with clothing, make-up and hair styled
  • Patient
  • Experienced in posing
  • Offers feedback and suggestions for improving results
  • Photos customized to our product or service

Top tips for taking photos (from award winning photographer, David Pratt- DSP Photos)

3d little human read an open book

  • Be aware of photo opportunities
  • Make sure subject has enough light or use flash on camera  and never shoot into the sun
  • Composition- Shoot images tight, fill frame with what is important
  • Keep it simple – Just because you have the latest and greatest camera with all the bells and whistles does not mean you have to use them all the time.
  • Be quick – Just shoot it, if you think about it, it will be gone!
  • Use a tripod or mono pod in low light situations.

 

Videos Add Dimension

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a video with sound must be worth more, right? Videos done professionally assist your audience in many ways:

Encourage Action!

Sure, it’s very basic, but this 12 second video, embedded on our webpage, increased response more than 75%!

 

How-To For Making a Sale!

 

We produced a video for a product just released to the market. It needed to reach a global audience and we needed to show ease of use:

 

 

Sound was not necessary for the demonstration, as you can see.

Visit the full website here: Stethoshield

In addition to the website, the video was shown at several trade shows and at presentations to buyers. Within a month, orders for the product came in from across the US.

 

Animation!

Even something inanimate benefits from video. The concept was to show the product as a shopper would see it on a shelf. (Package design and video by Capitol Copy)

 

Top tips for producing your own video (from “Social Media in a Nutshell” seminar, 2014)

  • Use the best equipment you can afford
  • Learn or understand editing
  • Use professional models
  • Give most attention to sound or don’t include it
  • Make sure your video plays on most major platforms
  • Keep videos short
  • Start your own YouTube page to upload, download and showcase videos

 

Legal and Ethical Issues

It’s happened to us hundreds of times………..

Customer: “Can you print this from my file?

Us: “Sure, we’d be happy to. I see you have photos and graphics in the file. Are they yours?

Customer: “No, I just downloaded them from some website.

Us: “Well, they will not print well because they are low-resolution. And, there are copyright issues.

Customer: <big sigh>

So, how do you avoid this conundrum?

 

Top tips for using images

  • Take your own photo (your smartphone camera can do it!)
  • Pay for professional design services (capitol-copy.com)
  • Use a model
  • Buy clip art or photos from legitimate websites, like IStockPhoto or DollarPhotoClub

 

Thanks for stopping by!

RayRenBallRay@Capitol-Copy.com

 

 

*Contact information for Hulda Lind: Lindmodel@gmail.com

twitter-bird-white-on-blue@Huldalindkrist

68051_10151509108346729_1731694342_aIcemodel Hulda Lind Kristins

Posted in blogs, business lunch, creative writing, Digital printing, dining out, graphic design, printing, publishing, small business, small business sales, trenton nj, trenton restaurants

Highlight of My Day? Lunch!

burgerDessertRosasPaniniRosas

Well, not really. But it is something I look forward to each business day. While pondering this blog title, I stumbled upon an old review by Small Business Trends:

SBTrends

Matchmaking business lunch.

The recent expansion of LetsLunch builds on the fairly common blending of eating and doing business. What’s not to like?

You Can’t Eat Social Media

So, either you or your organization has an awesome social media strategy. You’re immersed in LinkedIn updates 24/7. And, you cross-post on a variety of platforms. Is there something missing? As we stress in our Social Media seminars: “never forget you are connecting with people. It’s hard work making and keeping friends on line or off.”  Here are some reasons to try LetsLunch, or something like it:

  • –        People like doing business with people they know
  • –        Lunch helps a conversation blossom in a way the web-based cannot
  • –        Networks will expand through mutual introductions
  • –        Conversations are more confidential
  • –        Real connections mean better understanding
  • –        Opportunity to sample new restaurants and foods

Often, lunch is brown-bag or fast food, as time permits. But, they can be shared as well. One of our paper sales reps dropped by and we both brown-bagged lunch, chatted about new products and services and saved the time and expense of a restaurant.

Martini.jpgThe Three Martini Lunch

Because we use a variety of machines in our business, it’s not a good idea to operate them “under the influence.” But, there are many other options for the business lunch. Our local Downtown Deli is a favorite spot for a meet and greet. Despite being busy and crowded, there is always a place to talk without shouting.

More formally, Trattoria Rosa Bianca  in Yardley offers a relaxed atmosphere where you are certain to linger, (if only for the fresh and unique dishes they create!)

Are You in Silicon Valley?

If so, we’re not having lunch anytime soon. But, if you are within the Mercer County, NJ area, why not form a local chapter of LetsLunch or something similar, like Highlight, Banjo or Grubwithus? LetsLunch emphasizes the business/professional purpose of the midday repast, as compared to the others. Truthfully, you don’t really need a social media platform to organize a business lunch. For about two years, I was part of an informal business lunch group we called TABLED: Trenton Area Business Leaders Eating and Drinking. Appointments were made by e-mail blasts and texting, with good results.

Restaurants, of course, should have a vested interest in social dining groups, and we should encourage them to develop geographic loyalty. In addition, sharing their menus online helps with planning the business lunch and saves time.

AppleGirlBottom Lines and Waistlines

I know; there are those who worry about the expense and the additional calories. So here are some suggestions to help overcome those fears:

  • –        Limit the number of lunches each week
  • –        Order less, or less filling food
  • –        Walk to lunch
  • –        Have a brown-bag business lunch in a park or in a food court
  • –        Order the lunch specials, which are frequently smaller and less costly
  • –        Remember the purpose of your business lunch.

Do Not Click On This Photo if You Are Over 30.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Anyway, here are 10 ways to make your lunch break more productive, even if you are over 30: Productive Lunch

Thanks for reading. Lunch anyone?

-Ray

RayRenBall

(First 3 Photos © Trattoria Rosa Bianca, 2013. Used with permission)