I started working on my presentations for ShutterFest in April yesterday. I've got plenty of time, but decided to start building some of my background slides now. As I started wandering through the sites of the artists I respect the most, I noticed a common denominator. It wasn't earth-shaking, but it was interesting to see. As I surfed the Internet, QUALITY was always number one.
It's the one common denominator on every site of every photographer or company any of us consider iconic. I know it's not a revolutionary concept, but we've all gotten so caught up in social media, blogging and creating buzz, too often we forget, a well-exposed, composed and presented image is still King!
All the marketing genius in the world isn't going to substitute for the quality of your photographs. And while lots of hype and discounting might seem to get more business in the door initially, it won't get you a second time buyer. People won't come back to you if your work or service was "underwhelming".
So, the next time you put images up on your website, think quality. Think about what you're about to post. Is it really your very best work? Is it representative of a philosophy that suggests you never compromise the final image? Does it really show the skill set you want to present?
Then think about the way you run your business, the way you market yourself and the level of customer service you provide - quality is the key to success on every level. You've got a choice to make - do you want to be Nordstroms or the Blue Light Special at Kmart?
I found two quotes that seem appropriate to the topic:
"Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives." William A Foster
"When you're out of quality you're out of business." Anonymous
Illustration Credit: © kbuntu - Fotolia.com
Check out "Why?" one of the most popular features on the SCU Blog. It's a very simple concept - one image, one artist and one short sound bite. Each artist shares what makes the image one of their most favorite. We're over 100 artists featured since the project started. Click on the link above and you can scroll through all of the episodes to date.