How has the iPad helped gain buzz and awareness of your studio within your community?
I take my iPad everywhere with me. It’s the perfect business tool for keeping track of sessions, taking notes, showing my portfolio, signing contracts, and so much more. Using an iPad shows potential clients that I’m a professional who cares about their time and I’m prepared to provide them the best service possible. And since the iPad is still relatively new, I get lots of people who see me with it and say, “Is that the iPad?” and we get into a lively conversation.
How does Animoto specifically play a part in that?
Showing an Animoto video to potential clients and referral partners is a unique and fun way for them to view my work. It lets them know that I’ll do the extra and unexpected to make sure they have a great portrait experience. High school seniors love seeing themselves in Animoto videos and they share these with their friends which has helped me gain much more exposure. They tell their friends, “She’s the fun photographer!”I also use Animoto for my non-photography clients. I’ve created Animoto videos for my various business networking organizations which have used them as internet promos.
Do you also sell the Animoto videos or use them as teasers to get new clients?
Both. I sell the Animoto videos as part of my packages but I also create videos as part of my marketing.
You are incredibly active in your community. How has being such a high-profile community member helped spread the word about your studio?
I focus on the “Givers Gain” philosophy. (This philosophy is the foundation for BNI– Business Network International–for which I’m an Assistant Director here in Hawaii.) I focus on helping others achieve their goals and I work with like-minded individuals. By creating a community of “givers” we all win. Being active in the community is my way of giving back, it’s incredibly satisfying, and it also adds credibility to everything I do. People know I will work hard for them, whether it’s for a volunteer project or for their personal portrait project.
What other technology or social media tools do you use to spread the word about your studio – other than the iPad?
I’m a bit of a tekkie—I love new gadgets, new software and new tools! (My friends and business associates are always asking me which software, apps, or gadgets I’m currently using.) Right now my two favorite, indispensible tools are my iPhone and my iPad. I’m on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and I have a blog. And I know some of my clients have posted their Animoto videos on MySpace.
How important do you feel it is for photographers to embrace new technology and why? Do you have any predictions on what these new technologies will do for the face of photography?
No matter what industry, it’s important to keep up with trends and technology. I don’t feel you have to own every piece of new technology or the latest equipment, (it would be nice if you could!) but it’s important to know what’s out there and to have the right tools to do your job. I always look for ways to streamline my business so I can be more profitable, provide a better service to my clients, and have more free time to spend at the beach. Keeping an eye on emerging technology helps me do that.Predictions for the future? It’s already amazing to me how much the face of photography has changed in the past several years. I think the most wonderful aspect of these new technologies is that it’s going to really unlock the creative genius in photographers and we’re going to see some things we’ve never seen before.
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