I Am Mad and Wont Take It Anymore

Recap of Free Call with Daniel Tardent

I am mad. Actually, I am really mad and here is why.

This past Tuesday I facilitated my monthly Free Call with Daniel Tardent. It was a call on Search Engine Optimization or SEO. We had almost 200 people who had pre-registered for the call. We had lots of questions that came in before the call. It was clear to us that SEO is a hot topic for you. Most of you don’t know a lot about what SEO means or how to do it right. And many of you don’t understand what your ranking in the search engine means, why you need a good one or, to take it further,  how to get your ranking to go up.

And yet, a lot of you didn’t show up to the call and we had very little response and sign-ups for the 21 Day course on SEO that we offered.

Just a moment ago I got off the phone with Daniel. The owner of Beautiful Artists Websites and the co-author of “The Artists SEO Success System.” I had to apologized to him on your behalf and told him that I am simply baffled.

Here is what I think is happening. You are reading this blog post because you understand at some level that your photography business is in fact a business. Not just a dream that will help you to support your Bohemian lifestyle.  You come here because you want to get clients, take pictures, have a calendar full of bookings and ultimately MAKE MONEY.

Let’s get this straight. I understand that you prefer to talk about the art. The lighting technique, what you did on the creative side and we could go on endlessly about what that new lens would do, that pro-pack, the new computer (hey I just bought the new 27 inch iMac), the proper back-up and rent that studio that you want so badly. But, let me ask you, how in the world are you going to pay for it?

I’ve been broke and I mean really broke for a very long time. It took me 13 years to figure out how to run my photography business like a business needs to be run. When I struck gold I decided that I will take my knowledge and will bring it back to you so that you, too can find your path to your success. And I can get you there much faster than the 13 years it took me. Even if I have to yell at you, drag you, kick you in the rear or do whatever a good coach and mentor does.

Keep doing what you are doing and nothing changes. If you are that happy and satisfied with how your business provides for you, you go do just that – nothing.

So why am I so mad at YOU?

You are wasting your and my time. I could be sitting on the beach with a bucket of Coronas and it’ll be a much better experience than the last two days!

I get it, the SEO Photography Course is not as sexy as a trip to the Provenance to photograph pretty flowers. It isn’t as fulfilling as that lighting workshop or a trip to the camera store to buy that new lens, camera or other equipment that you’ve wanting. And that course isn’t going to make you take better pictures or will make your website prettier or more current.

… But what it will do is get your work seen.

I know you don’t really want to do the business part. Why, because you probably suck at it. It’s not fulfilling or fun. So you rather spend your time and money doodling around cleaning up your images, and obsessing over your last image and what should go on your website, blog or fan page. You can stop doing it because nobody sees it anyway!!!

Let me translate the lingo for you:

  1. Unless you are seen, found, get traffic and show up in relevant searches you are not getting new clients.
  2. New clients mean money in the bank.
  3. Money in the bank means you can pay your bills.
  4. More jobs means that in addition to covering your overhead you actually will generate a profit.
  5. Profit means you have extra money to invest in new equipment and the fun stuff you really want to do.
  6. Perhaps you can even take your family on that VACATION in that NICE HOTEL.

How much more of your time do you want to waste? Time is money. So why would you not invest $197 for 21 days to make sure that all this time and money pays off? You need a little bit more discipline to get your business to the next level.

Do you know how your website ranks? I challenge you, find and download and install the Alexa toolbar. If you are in the millions you are as a matter of fact invisible. Your website is worthless as a marketing tool and an expensive portfolio.

Next, Google yourself. Do you show up in a relevant search? For example ‘wedding photographer your area’ or ‘still life photographer your area?’

Have you had a single job estimate or portfolio request or actual job come in through a caller who said ‘I found you through a Google search?’

If  the above hard questions are answered with “no” then what are you waiting for?

All it takes is 21 days for a ridiculously low fee of $197. Taught by a guy who spent 9 months learning and creating a system that others charge $5000 for!

Please, for your own sake, click on the link for the Free Call and listen what we talked about. Decide for yourself if perhaps the sexiest thing you can do for your business right now is to help yourself to show up on the Internet.

The course is scheduled to start on the 21st of this month. 3 one hour sessions on Wednesday. If you agree that your business deserves to found and seen, please click here to go to the shopping cart.

Because if you continue to snooze these opportunities away for whatever reason you have I won’t be offering courses anymore. I doing this because you told me you want help. So will you for crying out loud do your part!

Here is the link to the course again. I sincerely hope that you’ve just temporary forgot that we are talking about taking your business to the next level. To sweeten the deal, I’ll add a free month of the Silver Membership for anyone signing up, another $97 incentive for FREE. I want to click here now and sign yourself up.

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Comments

  1. Mike King says:

    I hadn't signed in but thanks for the kick up the backside that nearly all pro and wannabe photographers deserve. Well said!

  2. Chris Barton says:

    Do you know what? I am mad too! I am mad that you would try to promote a service to 'professional photographers' with such a cheap and nasty cheezee dollarstore microstock image!

  3. photosecrets says:

    Ts, ts Chris. We don't bash other photographers work. A good image is one that sells. I happen to think that this image is just as good as a RF or RM image, hence I licensed it.

  4. Chris Barton says:

    hmm... you are right, good images do sell. But when an image costs 2 dollars, who cares if it is good? It is basically been given away, gift horses, mouths etc

    And no, I'm afraid I don't consider this a 'good' image, it is a tired, cheezee, fake, cookie cutter image.

    When your market is professional photographers, I think you really have to consider the professional 'eye' that they will cast over an image you use.

    I'm not trying to be confrontational, I'm afraid I just think this looks bad.

  5. Chris Barton says:

    Another thing you may want to consider is that any photographers who 'dislike' microstock are unlikely to look favourably on the services you offer...

  6. Almost (did not sign up and therefore did not artificially raise expectations...) guilty as charged but deserving of a kick in the pants anyway. Beate, you've nailed me to a "T". I love the shooting side of life, I hate the marketing side, I don't know the effective ways to make that happen via the web and I need to get off my ass and do something about it.

  7. pogo says:

    chris barton-spot on.

    why doesn't she just go to the beach with her basket of Coronas raather than whinge about it.

    even her blog looks like cheap marketing biz

    and who wants a course with someone who rips you for minding your own business first. I want to know about SEO, I go to places like searchengineguide or searchenginewatch

    and why should I waste 197 USd on her? the whole point of this rant is very thinly veiled self-centered personal money interest. There's abs no guarantee that wasting money on her "course" will actually provide me better skills or insights than what I might already have or could gain by going elsewhere--and the ranting at public sux.

  8. pogo says:

    you might have said tht all the varied colored typeface, bold tyoe looks about as professional s any one of those scammy blz sites that are always trying to make fast bucks by selling nonexisteant business secrets.

    the tone is alienating-- even if I wanted to learn SEO, I wouldn't want to do it with somebody who rips the public.

    go to the beach and drink some Corona and cool off. this can't possibly be "professional" behavior. Besides the Habs beat the Caps--what more can you want than that?

    your language is also extremely offensive. I have a Masters in Information Science, so don't tell me what I can't do. I probably hve more wordsmithery skills and keywording skills than you can imagine, so why the heck waste money here.

    and maybe being invisible is not nearly so bad as being visibly offensive.

    you know, the pearl is the secret of the oyster and that's what makes it so valuable. you have to search for it.

  9. photosecrets says:

    Pogo, please... the pearl in the oyster? You want potential customers to search for you and hope that one fine day one deep sea diver accidentally finds you? Do you think this is actually going to happen? That is your business strategy? Never heard that one as an excuse of being flat broke until just now.

    I teach real world methods but what I do is not for everyone. It's for photo professionals who understand this is a business. Show me your bank account and I'll tell you if you are a success. Yeah, yeah I know your pictures are great - but are you making money?

  10. Chris Barton says:

    Hi Beate

    can you show us some 'real world' SEO results?

    Can you show us what relevant phrases your blog ranks for? How much traffic do you get as result of your SEO work?

    thanks
    Chris

  11. photosecrets says:

    Again Chris, I do not think RM shooters are better than RF shooters are better than Subscription shooters are better than Microstock shooters. For the same reason I don't think Fashion shooters are better than Still Life shooters are better than Celebrity Shooters are better than Wedding Photographers are better than...

    Get it? The business behind the art is a universal principle. This stand true for any business, really. I happen to teach photography because that is what I know. This bashing of other types of photographers - you got to stop that, seriously. That gets you nowhere. Focus on what you have chosen as your business model and make that work. Let others do what works for them.

    We are not at war with each other, the real fight is what is going on out there, in the market place. Consumers, customers, media etc. You cannot prevent or ridicule customers licensing $1 images that do a good enough job to illustrate whatever that might be. Make sure that your images are so unique and high value that customers are willing to spend the extra $$ for your work.

    Now if you disagree with the delivery of my message, I am OK with that. You are entitled to that. I am discussing content, substance and business methods. I got to shake the tree to get you guys to listen. I've worked in this space long enough. You could just spend all day complaining to each other about the industry and never make any progress. My clients focus on their own work and how they can differentiate themselves. That includes finding your voice and niche.

  12. photosecrets says:

    Relentless aren't we? My blog ranks #1 in pages per view with 16.7 pages per visitor. That does not mean it is the highest ranked photography blog (it's not). My overall Alexa ranking ranges from 450K to today 563K (likely to go up with all the fuzz about yesterday's blog entry.) It shows up in Google searches for a number of tags. However this has been achieved only with what I know today and I am not a specialist on SEO which is why I brought someone else in to teach it. After the course I should know a lot more, though.

  13. Chris Barton says:

    Hi Beate

    Re: "You cannot prevent or ridicule customers licensing $1 images..."

    I cannot prevent it, but I can ridicule it:

    http://fairtradephotographer.blogspot.com/2010/03/microstock-why-would-reputable-company.html

    this page got 50,000 visitors in one week.

    And the article is relevant to you because your audience is professional photographers, who will increasingly be aware of TinEye and how it can be used with one click to find the source of images. Which means when you promote services to professional photographers with a dollar store image, they will immediately know this.

    regards
    Chris

  14. Chris Barton says:

    sounds great!

    please give us an update after the course.

    regards
    Chris

  15. Michael says:

    Chris, Just as an FYI. Doing as Beate has suggested in the past has taken me from a 21 million Alexa rating to 498,768 and climbing. And I haven't taken the course yet. Your site is at 232,292 currently and you had the largest spike in your ratings as of April 5th this year. Just a month ago you were just under that 490k mark yourself, and you seem to be slipping back towards it.

    Your tactic, more like your shot in the dark post, did you good short term results. Perhaps great even. But what is your long term plan? Perhaps another shot in the dark?

    If you will notice the post above was directed to those who requested SEO information (like me). If you are such a SEO god hold on to your rating. I will continue to grow mine and in hte not too distant future I will wave to you as we pass on the Alexa scale... As I rise and you sink.

    Tell us about stock please. Show us how you know more than a woman who came to this country with squat, built a stock agency that was purchased by Corbis. You know Corbis, the one owned by Bill Gates.

    What is your track record? Why should I listen to you over a woman who has been a success and works to give back. If you look up the sale you will see she doesn't have to work. She chooses to.

    So Chris, what have you done lately to teach/share success?

  16. matthew pace says:

    Chill...there are a host of gurus out there including Beate. Nothing wrong with that..whatever her method is it caught our attention so maybe there is something she does that we can use to catch a buyers attention as well.

    At ASMP I have hosted a number of them giving seminars. While no one but no one has a magic pill that most are looking for, there is always some gem in their program that one can use...a spark something that you never thought of or jsut forgot.

    The real problem is that most don't really apply it once they discover it. They keep on looking for it all in one rather than a series of gems from various places that turn your jewelry box into a treasury. Everyone has something to offer, if you don't think so, it's because you're not listening.

  17. Chris Barton says:

    Hi Michael

    I don't remember claiming to be an SEO 'God'. Infact if you look though my postings I have made no claims to know anything about SEO.

    However, since you asked...

    I started my blog 5 months ago, have written about 8 articles in that time, and my blog has a far higher ranking than Beate's which has been going more than year and has many more articles.

    Less work, more results.

    But that's just my blog.

    My 'site' (at least my main stock photo site) has an Alexa ranking of 14,335. That is higher than Alamy. You know Alamy, the one that has more than 18 million images online. The biggest online stock collection in the world.

    According to Google Analytics, in the past month my site got:

    2,221,959 Page Views (that's page views, not 'hits')
    716,889 Unique Visitors

    My track record in getting work for photographers through SEO?

    Here is a link to a list of all the keywords which visitors used to come to my site yesterday. Note this is just yesterday, and this is just searches with the word 'photographer' in them.

    http://www.photographersdirect.com/photographers_20100417.html

    And yes, I personally did the SEO work.

    Re: "I will wave to you as we pass on the Alexa scale… As I rise and you sink."

    Please do - hey, I will even buy you a bottle of champagne to celebrate - it is going to be a big day!
    :)

  18. James Markus says:

    I'm really happy to see you in a linkedin group, Chris. Out of curiosity - in your opinion do meta tags matter anymore or not? I put them in my site and got a 10-12% spike, but I was on a downward spiral. So, it stopped the bleeding, and got me a handful of steady visitors.

  19. James Markus says:

    I see I clicked through the LinkedIn Photography Professionals discussion board onto Beate's blog...so disregard my previous post. I have read Beate's rant, and I agree with Chris that it does not come off as professional. However, I did learn one practical piece of advice by reading it, and if even in a rant Beate can convey good advice...well that has value to me.

  20. Chris Barton says:

    Hi Markus - I will answer you privately - I have your email address.

    Chris

  21. Chris Barton says:

    Hey Michael,

    Re your comment: "Show us how you know more than a woman who came to this country with squat, built a stock agency that was purchased by Corbis. You know Corbis, the one owned by Bill Gates."

    This is funny - I thought I ought to find out something about this guy 'Bill Gates' you mentioned and his site 'Corbis' (because Michael, I like do do at least a little research before I write stuff) and, as you seem a big fan of 'Alexa rankings', I thought I would check them out too, so here's a screenshot:

    http://www.photographersdirect.com/tempimages/pd_corbis.jpg

    I'm no expert, but as far as I understand this, it means my site actually got more vistors than this 'Corbis' site did on two occasions in the past 3 months. Wow - go figure!

    Maybe your pal Bill will come knocking on my door one of these days....

    And if he does, do you know who I am going to go to for advice? No, sorry, not you Michael, Beate.
    :)

  22. Michael says:

    Chris, If you come to me to learn how to negotiate with the likes of Bill Gate's legal team I am going to steer you away. I have negotiated multimillion dollar contracts with Dell, Adobe, Verizon Wireless and, yes Microsoft. But anyone who has ever been in negotiations with them knows, read that contract well because the only loopholes in it are one way. And I can tell you right now, it ain't your way.

    Beate would be a good start but you may want to hire a team of her.