Hitting the open road is an amazing feeling! Road trips are filled with adventure, simplicity, nostalgia and carefree vibes. However, in order for the journey to be a truly enjoyable experience, some planning and preparation are required. You need to know your starting location, your final destination, the best route to take and what you will need along the way (food, beverages, music, etc.).
Tomorrow (August 11th) I will be embarking on a Western Canada adventure, where I will be delivering my photography services to businesses in other provinces, with the goal of increasing their visibility and helping to “put them on the map”.
During the month of August, I will be in Alberta and British Columbia in September.
I am offering a Canada West Photo Package, which I will tell you more about at the end of this article, because I want to focus on the information here first. I believe that education is important and I want to help support you and your business the best way I can.
Let’s Start The Road Trip
When it comes to business visibility and imagery, a roadmap analogy with similar principles to an actual road trip applies. Let’s take a deeper look into what that means.
Assess Your Current Location
Do you know why attention and visibility is the number one thing you need to have to succeed in business today? Because without it, you simply don’t exist. I know it might sound harsh, but it’s the unfortunate truth.
There are three main reasons why attention and visibility are so hard to get for your business online:
- The internet is endless, with pages upon pages of Google results when you search for a simple item or service.
- People typically have an attention span of 3 seconds or less.
- We exist in a society that judges a book by its cover. If your business’ “book cover” or images online, doesn’t catch their attention, or catches their attention for a negative reason, then they will simply keep scrolling past you. They may ignore you in the future, too. Don’t let that happen.
When going on a road trip, you have to know where you are starting, so you can plot the right route to get to your end destination. When a potential customer searches for your type of business, you only have one opportunity to make a positive first impression. I can help make sure it’s a great one!
Let me ask you, how effective is your business’ visibility today?
Take a minute with that question and really think about it. Are the images you are currently using attracting or repelling your potential customers? When is the last time you updated your business photos online? Or *gasp* do you even have photos of your business online?
Gas up the car
Once you have determined where you are starting from on the business visibility road map, it’s time to add fuel to the car. This task involves determining what simple & low-tech tools you can use to get started right away.
Google/Google Maps/Google My Business are the number one places your business needs to exist online. Having a Google Maps Business account is like using premium fuel for your gas tank, but at the more affordable rate of regular gas. A Google account can supercharge your visibility online because Google is the most used search engine worldwide.
Customers (current and potential) read reviews before purchasing a product or service. Reviews on Google are gold and they are trusted, especially on a Google page, as it is very hard to tamper with the authentication process of a reviewer.
Next, where can you source photos to use on a Google page, your website or for your social media channels? Below are three excellent places:
- Professional photos: Maybe you had some images taken previously, that still look relevant today and show your product or services. If you have them, use them!
- Photos from your phone: Most of us have a mini professional camera in our pocket. There are a number of automatic settings that will often capture a decent image to tide you over until you can schedule a photo session with a professional (such as myself).
- Stock photos: If you can find some images with similar colours/look to your business branding, this type of photography can work quite well. Some free sites, with relevant images available include: Unsplash, Burst and Pixabay.
Take the Best Route
Now that we know where we are starting from on the road map, and we’ve learned how to fill the gas tank, it’s time to figure out the best route to drive. Is it the hilly one through the mountains? Or the congested city streets?
There are 5 essentials you must have that will help you get more attention and turn that attention into customers and clients:
- Be searchable and easy to find online
This includes having a website, setting up a Google Business profile and being present on social media.
- Create an emotional response
When a customer finds you, grab their attention through your images. A picture is worth 1,000 words, so tell that story and create an emotional response.
High quality photos provide a strong digital first impression
The importance of a professional photographer can’t be understated. Work with them to plan your images and create a strong digital first impression (DFI).
What are your business values, goals and messages? Your customers want to know what they will experience. The visual brand of your business needs to be consistent across all online platforms and social media.
- Claim expertise
Show your customers how you are an expert in your field with your photos. How? Have images of YOU, providing your service or product or photos of you coaching or speaking. Let the viewer make that human connection.
How to Sell Without Saying a Word
A very important element to the road trip is the music! Road trips are often defined by the songs we play in the car.
Music has so much emotion in the melodies and lyrics are such fantastic ways to tell stories. Unlike road trip music where a song tells a story in 3-5 minutes, your business images need to tell a story in 3-7 seconds.
Important question: How do you sell without saying a word?
A tried and true way to market a product or service is to show your customer the experience they will have working with your business. The number one secret question in every prospect's mind is: “Are they going to take care of me?” followed directly by “Are they going to do what they promised?” Images quickly tell your prospect what they will experience.
Now that we know how to tell a story and evoke emotion with an image, we have an idea of what our road trip playlist might be.
I’m ready to hit the road!
Hopefully, I will be making a stop at your business.
How I Can Help Your Business
As I mentioned earlier, I am offering a Canada West Photo Package, which includes the following:
- Business Branding Essentials Photography Session (25 images) when I am in your city/surrounding area - valued at $1,497
- Business Image Audit (completed in late July/early August) - valued at $257
Actual cost: $1,694 + Ontario HST (savings of $60)
Total package value: $1,754 + Ontario HST
Current Itinerary (give or take a day or two)
- August 20 to 21: Calgary, Alberta
- August 22 to 26: Edmonton, Alberta
- September 14 to 20: Penticton, British Columbia
- September 21 to 26: Vancouver, British Columbia
Secure your spot today by filling out the contact form at https://bonniedickson.com/pages/contact-us
If you have any questions, you are able to include them on the form.
Spaces are limited to 2-3 per city I will be visiting.