A Photographer’s Diary, Business All Day

Last week saw me attending my very first business conference which I really enjoyed. I still do find myself walking around either taking photographs on weekdays or at an event like this and realising that this is what I do now for work and it’s really exciting.

So what did I learn? Well firstly, if I’d gone on the first day there had been a free bar, which considering I’d gone by train would have been ok with me. I turned up early expecting the venue to be heaving yet strangely it was very quiet all day and there were hardly any trade stands there, and of those that were there, very few that had any relevance to me, though I suppose with Healing with Photography I have quite a niche market.

I went to four workshops during the day, two of which I thoroughly enjoyed. These were the two where the presenters didn’t feel the need to swear every other word whilst explaining repeatedly this is who I am and I swear. Had I not been sitting front row in one and boxed in during another I would probably have left. However, I wasn’t quite brave enough to risk being heckled by the speaker, whom I was so keen to see I’d gotten there early and got a front row seat!

The first seminar I enjoyed and got a lot from was a company called Mojo, founder Andrew Thorp talked about selling your story before answering with what you do. This was very canny I have to say and I started to implement it immediately. It goes something like this; someone asks you what do you do and for me I now start with “I suffered with depression, anxiety and low self- esteem and through my landscape photography and studying meditation and other self-help techniques I recovered and now share what I learnt with others through my courses.”

By telling the story first it’s been discovered people listen longer, you get them emotionally involved and they want to buy before you even get to the product. Give it a try and see if it works for you. I know that people always perk up when I get to the why I do what I do; by putting it at the beginning has been an interesting experiment that is working well.

The other seminar which I got a lot from was a lady talking about Twitter. Although I have been using Twitter for a while, and know how to use it properly as a business tool it was good to listen to someone else give tips I’d never thought of. Such as; type #journorequest into the search box and you will find a wealth of journalists, many from mainstream media looking for all manner of people to interview. It’s well worth taking a few minutes each day to see who needs what. Here’s a good tip I thought, put your contacts email addresses through your email account like Gmail and then search for them through Twitter to see if they are on there. She was quite insistent that sometimes it’s easier to have daily conversations with someone on Twitter yet they wouldn’t give you the time of day on the phone.

The speaker was very hot on insisting that you must give good content when you give links to people to follow. Giving something of value to let them see that you are worthwhile following and not always looking for the sale. I have to say that although I know the benefits of Twitter I have been letting it slip of late and it’s something that I’m starting to address.

Well I have lots of things to put into practice, not least to check the listings for #journorequest for today.

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