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Month: May 2011

What Marketing Is NOT

Every once in a while I’ll hear somebody make comments about how the essence of marketing is to “throw stuff out there and see what sticks.” Normally I don’t say much in response to this, but sometimes I just want to tell people “Um, that’s not correct.” This is very, very bad advice, and it’s not what marketing is. Marketing is, in fact, very methodical and draws heavily on statistics, demographic research and analytical data. In English: we use numbers, not gut feelings. Good marketing is all about looking at the facts and figures, and then making a smart decision based what you can deduce has a reasonable chance of success. And it’s not just one step either; it’s a process. You do your homework first, then attempt to reach your target audience on a small scale. Then you measure the results.  If they’re positive (i.e. you actually make a return on your investment), you can say you’ve run a successful test. Knowing that, you can then deploy a whole campaign. Anything other than this is just a waste of money. It doesn’t make business...

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Help! I moved a window off my screen!

If you’ve accidentally moved a window off screen on you mac, don’t panic. It’s happened to me before as well. This usually happens when you’ve recently been working on a laptop (such as a MacBook or MacBook Pro) and had it plugged into an external display—typically 23″ or 24″ inches. (Those seem to be the most problematic for me anyway.) Oftentimes once you disconnect the external display, your windows are arranged in a strange and funky way, and sometimes the programs you were working on are now located so far off the screen that you can’t even click and drag it back onto the visible part of your screen. If this happens to you, just try the following:       That’s it! Fixed!...

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Ashley Photography

I know a lot of photographers. So many, in fact, that I think I know more photographers than I do Realtors, and that’s really saying something. However; there are very few people who call themselves photographer who have actually earned that title. I know: I studied photography in College. I used to do film photography, and up until this year, I had a darkroom in my basement where I would laboriously “pour the soups,” developing film and creating prints for hours in the darkness and emerge, exhausted, with one or two good shots and a huge grin on my...

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Blank Canvas Syndrome

Something I’ve noticed over the years is that being creative isn’t necessarily difficult for me, but starting a creative project is. It’s the hardest part. There’s nothing more intimidating while creating than viewing a blank page or canvas. (My experience has mainly been with pixels and not paint, so my exposure to “blank canvas syndrome” has been on a computer). Whether writing the first draft of a document, or staring at a blank Photoshop canvas, it’s sometimes paralyzing for me. I’ll procrastinate to prevent making the first mark on that beautiful, blemish-free white rectangle. My mind starts to wander… what if I do it wrong? What if I start off on the wrong foot? What if I use the wrong color? What will other people think? What if I’m not in the right mood? Sometimes I start telling myself that I need to get some inspiration first. So I look at examples of what others have done in the past. If I’m creating a poster, I’ll look at examples of a poster. If I’m working on a new website, I’ll look at the latest trends in the web design world. But that can actually work against me and really make me miserable. Staring at someone else’s work won’t make me a more creative person, and sometimes it just makes me more critical of the work I have done in...

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