Learn… Do… Teach… I heard these words this week in relation to a challenge to share knowledge with others.
I’m working on a project to get back to teaching basic (employable) skills to young people and those who are having a hard time being employed. This also applies to small business owners who have to be all things, and ofttimes feel overwhelmed.
The Learn…Do…Teach concept was a message to me to take action, to not wait until I have it perfectly put together. (I have to tell you, that’s my greatest frustration!)
Before I go any further, though, let me take a moment to say a special thank you to Margo, Naomi and Caitlin. If I can paraphrase one of Naomi’s favorite phrases that I think applies to each of you: “She is kind, she shows up and she is always reaching for the unexpected.” You have each been a source of more encouragement than you know! Thank you…
So as part of this journey, I had the opportunity to prepare a blog post on creating images for blogs, helping new personal business owners develop skills to feel confident in posting blogs that will get attention. Long time readers may recognize some of these images that I used as examples.
Here is what I wrote… see if this would be helpful to anyone you know.
It’s part of a larger video series I am recording along with an e-book (you see what you started Margo!). This seems too big at times, but after what I have watched Naomi do, I can clearly hear Caitlin’s voice in my ear saying, “Don’t you turn back now!” 😉 What a wonderful and supportive group of friends!
From Simple To Stunning:
Creating Beautiful Images For Your Blog
So you’re thinking of starting a new blog for your business.. Great idea!
Personal businesses need all the help we can give and a blog is a terrific place to start. But there are blogs… and then there are BLOGS! And images are often the difference-makers.
Quality images increase the chances of being found, increase chances of being ranked higher in the search lists, and make the blog material pop as well. It’s just smarter to use sharp images.
This is where most new business owners get stuck
Ok, I hear you. You don’t have professional video or photography equipment so you rely on your cell phone to take pictures. Assuming you can easily get them from your phone to your computer, you feel like they’re good enough, right? Some people do. Yes… and those would be those yawn-inducing blogs I mentioned . They lack focus and punch.
No.. the facts say really sharp blogs use images they have customized for the post topic and mood. And you can do it too!
What? You say you don’t have photo editing software? And, if you had the money to buy all that technical stuff you wouldn’t need to start a blog in the first place? Hmmm. Not to worry my friends.
What if …I told you there is a way to tweak any photo with just what you already have?
- That you could go from simple to stunning with what you already have in your hands- and in under 10 minutes in most cases?
- That a few moments spent on customizing a photo image could make the difference between visitors who browse ‘one & done’-style versus those who like what they see and read more pages, and become your engaged prospect?
There are dozens of choices out there and many people will have different preferences. In fact, I own Photoshop (in Creative Suite 6) but don’t often use it for this because it’s too cumbersome for small projects like a one-off image for my blogs (I now have 4 blogs to manage so I want quick and easy!)
For most images I can improve the look with just two products, two that were already on my computer when I bought it 5 years ago. Yes, even though I also have a newer laptop (and an iPad Air, so don’t feel too sorry for me just yet!) I still use my PC and these two simple programs to get the job done.
The first is Windows Photo Gallery (as an editor); the second is standard issue MS PowerPoint (for making and framing composite images as pictures).
My cell phone uploads the photos I take straight into my desktop folder (either manually from the SD card, or via Bluetooth to my Dropbox account). From there I open Windows Photo Gallery, select the image I want and begin. I should note that when I’m looking to enhance photos, I look for .jpg rather than .png files… more about the difference in a later post.
Take a look at this sample “Before” image of the 4 friends- not blog material on its own, but it turned out to be useful as working material.
As they say, there is more than one way to catch a fish, but the best way is the one that gets the fish in your pan in time for dinner!