It's WPPI week and what a trip it's been so far. I've written about this so many times in the past. The number one reason to be at any good convention is networking, but I want to define it further - it's not just about meeting new people, but physically connecting with people you talk to all the time, but have never actually met.
We're all so focused on social media - we post, we tweet, we count our "likes" and encourage more "followers", but what about shaking somebody's hand who's been helping you in your cyber world? You might know more about them than your next door neighbor, but you've never actually made eye contact and spoken.
That ability to make personal contact is the mortar that holds the bricks of your network together. It adds so much to the dimension of support. Some times it just takes standing in a hallway and catching up to people as they walk by.
Another reason to hit every show is just to see what's new...in the case of the picture above, I was drawn to the Tenba booth at first by all the commotion with a Sumo wrestler, but it was all for an introduction to Tenba's new line of Messenger DNA bags. This is about durability and diversity, because it's rare that anybody carries just a camera anymore. We're traveling with a camera body or two, lenses, a laptop, often even a small projector. Then comes a phone, the chargers for everything and who knows what else you're taking with you.
Added to the promotional mix for Tenba was getting your picture taken above and then being able to immediately hit the iPad, email it to yourself and have it to use in a "I-can't-believe-he-posted-that" image.
If you missed WPPI this year, don't worry about it - but put it on your calendar for next year, along with regional shows you have coming up in your area and PPE in New York if you can make it. Building your business isn't just about your skill set, it's about getting to know the people who are helping you build it.
And, while your at it, check out these bags!
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.