Find Your Product and Customer Target: Exercises

 

Craft Photography Fundamentals

 

Lesson Info

Find Your Product and Customer Target: Exercises

We're then gonna add in that statement, just like I said, and we're gonna put our product in it, so if I can't say, let's go back, if I can't say, let's go back. If I can't say: "My product's visual beacons are clean and sleek "with black background and lots of contrast." now there's a dissonance between me and what I like, and what my product fits. And you have to then decide is the product more important or am I more important. And I'm gonna tell you right now it's probably the product, because just because you love something, if your product doesn't match with that you're not gonna be able to sell it if there's this weird dissonance between your aesthetic, and your customer and your product's aesthetic. So then I would go back and do the five minute flip from your product's perspective. What does my product look good with? What would my product photograph well as? And kind of redo your assignment. But I'm not too worried about that with us because as makers, our personal aesthetic i...

s generally what we're making, okay. We're not accountants who are just selling numbers, we're selling what we have created and love. Not that accountants don't love numbers. I'm sure they do, okay, and they're very important. So let's go to the one, so if we have aligned our product and our personal, we then have to align with our customer. So we're gonna ask ourselves some questions about our customers to really give us an good guide, so this is our customer exercise. Ask yourself these questions: if you had to pick one celebrity client or customer, living or dead, who would it be? This isn't necessarily your favorite person, this is the celebrity that you could see buying your product and then being the best person to talk about it and convince other people to buy it. I find this question really interesting, because we've talked to the audience tonight, I've talked to a really good friend of mine and I showed her these questions, and she was like, that's the hardest question out of them all. But for some people it's the easiest question of them all so the reason I put in the celebrity, and then we get into real people, is because for some people it's hard to get into the minds of their loved ones or people they know, and kind of figure that out, and it's just easier to take someone fictional in their life and align that, and get the qualities from that, so that's why that question is in there. But what qualities, then, about that celebrity make them ideal for your product, okay? If I picked Audrey Hepburn and I picked Amy Schumer, that's her name, right, the comedian? They are very different, okay. They're both women, they're both celebrities, they both had a lot of money, right? So there's some common things, but how I market to Audrey is how I market to Amy, okay. Amy's gonna want humor and sarcasm, and a little grittiness, right. Audrey is gonna want classic and elegant and timeless. So I have to, when I put that celebrity, or even a fictional character in that position I can think about what do they really want, like what could I see them loving, right? And then I can start to make connections in that way. Yes? So, it would be great to talk about that one, in particular, Yes. With some of our in studio audience members, and for those of you who are at home feel free to do this exercise right along with us and tell us what your product is and what celebrity might be matching that. Who is your ideal celebrity? Maybe they're watching. (all laughing) Maybe they watch CreativeLive. Go for it. So I'm pretty new to this space of creating stuff, although I've enjoyed art and photography for a while, but it's so weird because those are the two people I was thinking of. That's awesome. And I'm like, I do have multiple Instagram handles, just because I feel like one side is completely, I take a lot of pictures of corks, so that's on black background, and then my normal, or original, Instagram is bright and colorful and probably needs to be refined, but I kind of like both of those. I don't know what to do. So I actually think that that's a smart move, right, you've separated them, you've made them two separate entities, and they reach two separate customers, and that's okay. You don't have to have multiples but if you do find that you have two definite styles that you really love, and two different audiences that you reach I do think it's smart to keep them separated like that. It's a lot more work. Yeah Switching back in and out. So, and you may find over time that you start to really love doing one more than the other, and that's okay, too. That's the beauty of being a small business owner, is that we can sort of move into the things that we really love and are passionate about. That's why you're your own boss. Yeah. So... I actually think that was very smart, good job. Anybody else have someone they want to say, or why it was hard? Yeah? I'll go. For me, actually this was the hardest of all the exercises because it was hard to find that one perfect person to fit; I actually couldn't find someone that was exact. But I thought, I make jewelry, very modern, bold jewelry with silver and enamel, and I picked Ruby Rose. She's the actress and DJ from Australia, and the reason why I picked her is because she's very authentic, she's very bold, she's very modern, and I felt like if she was using my jewelry, she would represent it the way I would want it to be represented. Perfect, and what I love about what you've just said is those three words: modern and bold and authentic, and that is your brand, those are your words, right? And that's what this exercise does, right, because you really have to think about, like, what are those qualities. And sometimes it's hard for us to see that in ourselves, right, so we're looking out and we're like, who do I want and what qualities do I want them to have? And those are what you want, and what you have, and what your brand represents, and so it's easier to say those good things about someone else and not yourself. So, yeah, I think that that's really amazing. Yes? We have some great ones that are coming in from the folks at home, so I wanted to do some shout-outs. And one is from Kennedy from Paris, who's joining us from Paris. Awesome! "Angelina Jolie would be my celebrity, "she is like my brand: beautiful, chic, and engaged in a better vision for this planet." So that's a good one. Awesome, yes. And there was one other one I wanted to read, and that was from Sonja B, who says Gwyneth Paltrow is hers. Her jewelry is, Sonja B's, is "simple, streamlined and elegant". Okay, that's awesome. Yeah. So what's so good about this too, is that you've come up with these key words, but now as you're styling you have a backstory now. Because now you're styling for Gwyneth, or you're styling for Audrey, or you're styling for Amy, so you don't have to make up this whole world. You now have someone literally in your mind you can see as you're styling. And, yes, it's an ideal, right. It's an ideal but we should be working towards the ideal, and when we do that then other people will join us and find that in us. And so that's why I like this little assignment so much, because it is literally someone we can see in our mind as we're styling, and would they like that? Would they like this background? Would they like this prop? And that helps us decide those things as we go along. Alright, let's talk about the next one. So I wanna bring it then down to a more real level, because those are our ideals but it's important to be real about who your customer is, okay? If you wanna create images that speak to your consumer then you really need to know who they are, and what colors do they like? Where do they live? What do they like to do in their spare time? How much money do they make? That's important, it's not something we like to talk about but it's important to know, kind of the salary base of the customers that you're working towards for several reasons, but a main one in photography is: I'm not gonna style with things from Walmart if my customer is Anthropologie. So it's really important for me to know my price points and who's buying from me. Okay, getting deeper: what do they value the most in their life? What are their worries in life? I actually heard April in her workshop, which was super good , talking about, like at 3a.m. what are they thinking about? What is their, like they wake up and what is their first thought? What problems are they facing? What do they do at the end of the day to relax? And my personal favorite, what were their last five Google searches? Okay, when they get on the computer what are they looking for, and how do I convince them to look for me? Okay, so this was actually my little brother, so my whole family's super creative, parent's in letter press, I'm in photography, a sister that's a graphic designer, and she also writes children's literature and is an editor, and another one that does amazing interiors and buys furniture and restores it, and then we have a brother, and he's a doctor, so that's disappointing. (audience laughter) But we still love him. So he's the odd man out, but he married someone just like us so that's cool. So he is actually interviewing right now for his residency, and this was the question that they asked him in his interview. They said would you be willing to show us your phone and your last five Google searches. So that's where I actually came up from this, because I thought that was fascinating, like how much that tells you about a person, what their last five Google searches were. So that's something just to kind of think about and play around with, because it does help us market towards them. What are they searching for, and how do I get in those search terms, and those SEO terms?

Class Description

You need great photos of your craft products if you want them to sell online, but just because you are awesome at making things doesn’t mean you are great at taking photos – until now. 

In Craft Photography Fundamentals with Candice Stringham, you’ll learn everything a craft merchant needs to know to take photos that really showcase the story behind your work. You’ll learn about: 

  • Creating affordable, photogenic backdrops and sets 
  • Capturing all kinds of textures 
  • Shooting with an iphone and DSLR camera 
  • Edits that add polish to your final images 
  • Creating a consistent look that makes your brand stand-out 
You’ll learn the basics of photo staging and you’ll see how a few simple lighting tricks can transform the look and feel of your final image. You’ll also get tips on working with props so you end up with a catalog-quality shot. And Candice will help you take advantage of your camera’s settings, the easy way. 

If you want to produce photographs that are as beautiful as the product you are showcasing, join Candice Stringham for the beginner-friendly class, Craft Photography Fundamentals

Reviews

a Creativelive Student
 

This class taught by Candice was amazing. She teaches in such a step-by-step, easy to understand pace. She shares so much of her own tips and tricks she uses to create beautiful images without spending a fortune or having all kinds of expensive equipment. Having the DSLR lessons included was really great for anyone who wants to do more than the camera phones are capable of. Learning the basics of how to use a DSLR is confusing for most people, but Candice broke it down in the simplest way possible. Social media is all about imagery, so if you want to put out the most beautiful eye-catching photos, then you want to learn how to use more than the camera phone. I don't have a business where I need to take photos of things I sell and I still enjoyed her class so much. As a photographer, I am going to use her ideas and insight when I photograph things for fun. There is so much to gain from this class. I would highly recommend taking her class. She is a wealth of great ideas and information and has that friendly personality of someone you'd want to sit and have coffee with.

yomichaela
 

A wonderful class to get you going with craft/product photography. Candice provides (and shows) fantastic examples and it's really fun to watch her work through a shoot, moving items, etc. to create the final image. She also covers some basic photography tips which is very helpful. Great class! I definitely recommend to others!

Melinda Malamoco
 

I loved this class! Candice is so personable, clear and relatable. I would want to hang out with her and be creative! I have been taking pictures for YEARS, and for my Etsy store for over two years, and I still learned a lot in her class. The lessons are set up in a way that you can follow, take what you want and don't worry about what you don't need. I will say that I got a TON of ideas for how to better display my brand, what my personal style is and how to be consistent with it. I so recommend this class for anyone who has small business or just wants to be able to take better pictures of their products. Okay, off to build a prop kit!