A visual world
Being that we now live in a digital world, it only makes sense that much of that world has a visual aspect to it. If you are going to try and promote your product, it is crucial to have an amazing photo that aids a sale.
While there are many talented folks out there, most of us cannot identify as a creative “Jack of All Trades”. As a result, we often have to outsource different tasks or take a crash course on how to do it ourselves.
The 4 P’s
This applies to promoting your product through use of photography. Even though Instagram might have us all fooled into thinking that we’re the next Annie Leibovitz, there is a lot that goes into photographing your product in a professional way.
A blog on Shopify has provided a detailed run-down of how to approach the task as a beginner.
The best approach to take is the utilization of the four P’s of product photography: planning, photographing, post-production, and publishing.
Planning is the stage in which you determine what you want your end result to be, and the steps you need to take in order to achieve that result. First, ask yourself where your photos are going to end up. The answer to this question may help answer how to design the shoot (for example, if it should be themed).
After doing this, make sure you determine your budget. While everyone knows you have to spend money to make money, it can be easy to go over budget on something like this if you’re not paying close attention (for example, is it necessary to hire a makeup artist? Maybe first see if there’s a friend you could ask).
Shots, shots, shots
Once these two items are figured out, create a shot list that expresses everything you’re looking for from your photos. The more detailed you are with this list, the more likely everyone involved will be helpful in aiding your achievement.
Finally, ask yourself – where and what? Figure out where you should shoot and what equipment you need. These two components may be determined depending on what your budget is.
Next, you get to the actual photography portion of the process. This first thing you want to do here is prepare your product. Make sure all items are clean and look their best; this will make the editing process that much smoother.
The next step piggybacks off of preparation and is coined as “styling.” This is where you want to show your product at its very best, which helps give the customer an idea of what it will look like upon use.
Really make your product shine
And, while on the subject of making your product look its best, ask yourself if you should natural or artificial lighting.
This can make or break the look of the product.
Finally, with photographing, you want to familiarize yourself with the camera settings so that you can try a variety of things. These settings may include (but are not limited to) ISO (which deals with light sensitivity,) aperture, and shutter speed.
The next phase in the product photography process is post-production. This is where you use different software to make your photos look the best they possibly can.
During this phase, you will want to remove distracting items from the background, use batch processing to fix errors on multiple photos, and retouch any impurities. The blog notes that if you do not feel comfortable doing this yourself (or do not have the time) it is normal to outsource this step to professionals.
Now, it’s time to debut your product to the world through publishing. Simply upload the images to wherever you want to show off your product.
The steps of product photography will have a lot of trial and error, so don’t get discouraged. Using this guide will help you get off on the right foot.
Bite-sized retail: Macy’s plans to move out of malls
(BUSINESS MARKETING) While Macy’s shares have recently climbed, the department store chain is making a change in regards to big retail shopping malls.
I was recently listening to a podcast on Barstool Sports, and was surprised to hear that their presenting sponsor was Macy’s. This struck me as odd considering the demographic for the show is women in their twenties to thirties, and Macy’s typically doesn’t cater to that crowd. Furthermore, department retail stores are becoming a bit antiquated as is.
The sponsorship made more sense once I learned that Macy’s is restructuring their operation, and now allowing their brand to go the way of the ghost. They feel that while malls will remain in operation, only the best (AKA the malls with the most foot traffic) will stand the test of changes in the shopping experience.
As we’ve seen a gigantic rise this year in online shopping, stores like Macy’s and JC Penney are working hard to keep themselves afloat. There is so much changing in brick and mortar retail that major shifts need to be made.
So, what is Macy’s proposing to do?
The upscale department store chain is going to be testing smaller stores in locations outside of major shopping malls. Bloomingdale’s stores will be doing the same. “We continue to believe that the best malls in the country will thrive,” CEO Jeff Gennette told CNBC analysts. “However, we also know that Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s have high potential [off]-mall and in smaller formats.”
While the pandemic assuredly plays a role in this, the need for change came even before the hit in March. Macy’s had announced in February their plans to close 125 stores in the next three years. This is in conjunction with Macy’s expansion of Macy’s Backstage, which offers more affordable options.
Gennette also stated that while those original plans are still in place, Macy’s has been closely monitoring the competition in the event that they need to adjust the store closure timeline. At the end of the second quarter, Macy’s had 771 stores, including Bloomingdale’s and Bluemercury.
Last week, Macy’s shares climbed 3 percent, after the retailer reported a more narrow loss than originally expected, along with stronger sales due to an uptick in their online business. So they’re already doing well in that regard. But will smaller stores be the change they need to survive?
Why you must nix MLM experience from your resume
(BUSINESS MARKETING) MLMs prey on people without much choice, but once you try to switch to something more stable, don’t use the MLM as experience.
MLM experience… Is it worth keeping on your resume?
Are you or someone you know looking for a job after a stint in an MLM? Well, first off, congratulations for pursuing a real job that will provide a steady salary! But I also know that transition can be hard. The job market is already tight and if you don’t have much other work experience on your resume, is it worth trying to leverage your MLM experience?
The short answer? Heck no.
As Ask the Manager puts it, there’s a “strong stigma against [MLMs],” meaning your work experience might very well put a bad taste in the mouth of anyone looking through resumes. And looking past the sketchy products many offer, when nearly half of people in MLMs lose money and another quarter barely break even, it sure doesn’t paint you in a good light to be involved.
(Not to mention, many who do turn a profit only do so by recruiting more people, not actually by selling many products.)
“But I wouldn’t say I worked for an MLM,” you or your friend might say, “I was a small business owner!”
It’s a common selling point for MLMs, that often throw around pseudo-feminist feel good slang like “Boss Babe” or a “Momtrepreneur,” to tell women joining that they’re now business women! Except, as you might have guessed, that’s not actually the case, unless by “Boss Babe” you mean “Babe Who Goes Bankrupt or Tries to Bankrupt Her Friends.”
A more accurate title for the job you did at an MLM would be Sales Rep, because you have no stake in the creation of the product, or setting the prices, or any of the myriad of tasks that a real entrepreneur has to face.
Okay, that doesn’t sound nearly as impressive as “small business owner.” And I know it’s tempting to talk up your experience on a resume, but that can fall apart pretty quickly if you can’t actually speak to actual entrepreneur experience. It makes you look like you don’t know what you’re talking about…which is also not a good look for the job hunt.
That said… Depending on your situation, it might be difficult to leave any potential work experience off your resume. I get it. MLMs often target people who don’t have options for other work opportunities – and it’s possible you’re one of the unlucky ones who doesn’t have much else to put on paper.
In this case, you’ll want to do it carefully. Use the sales representative title (or something similar) and, if you’re like the roughly 50% of people who lose money from MLMs, highlight your soft skills. Did you do cold calls? Tailor events to the people who would be attending? Get creative, just make sure to do it within reason.
It’s not ideal to use your MLM experience on a resume, but sometimes desperate times call for desperate measures. Still, congratulations to you, or anyone you know, who has decided to pursue something that will actually help pay the bills.
This smart card manages employee spending with ease
(BUSINESS MARKETING) Clever credit cards make it easier for companies to set spending policies and help alleviate expense problems for both them and their employees.
Company credit cards are a wonderful solution to managing business expenses. They work almost exactly like debit cards, which we all know how to use, am I right? It is the twenty-first century after all. Simply swipe, dip, or tap, and a transaction is complete.
However, keeping up with invoices and receipts is a nightmare. I know I’ve had my fair share of hunting down wrinkled pieces of paper after organizing work events. Filling out endless expense reports is tedious. Plus, the back and forth communication with the finance team to justify purchases can cause a headache on both ends.
Company credit cards make it easier for companies to keep track of who’s spending money and how much. However, they aren’t able to see final numbers until expense reports are submitted. This makes monitoring spending a challenge. Also, reviewing all the paperwork to reimburse employees is time-consuming.
But Spendesk is here to combat those downsides! This all-in-one corporate expense and spend management service provides a promising alternative to internal management. The French startup “combines spend approvals, company cards, and automated accounting into one refreshingly easy spend management solution.”
Their clever company cards are what companies and employees have all been waiting for! With increasing remote workforces, this new form of payment comes at just the right moment to help companies simplify their expenditures.
These smart cards remove limitations regular company cards have today. Spendesk’s employee debit cards offer companies options to monitor budgets, customize settings, and set specific authorizations. For instance, companies can set predefined budgets and spending category limitations on flights, hotels, restaurants, etc. Then they don’t have to worry about an employee taking advantage of their card by booking a first-class flight or eating at a high-end steakhouse.
All transactions are tracked in real time so finance and accounting can see purchases right as they happen. Increasing visibility is important, especially when your employee is working remotely.
And for employees, this new form of payment is more convenient and easier on the pocket. “These are smart employee company cards with built-in spending policies. Employees can pay for business expenses when they need to without ever having to spend their own money,” the company demonstrated in a company video.
Not having to dip into your checking account is a plus in my book! And for remote employees who just need to make a single purchase, Spendesk has single-use virtual debit cards, too.
Now, that’s a smart card!
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