The Power of LIVE content
Live content allows you to connect and build authentic interaction and trust and relationship. But now in a different way. And excitingly enough, in a way that scales. With live content, you can scale the unscalable. You can scale the unscalable. Here's what I mean when I say that. People wanna do business with people that they trust. People wanna do business with people that they've had a connection with, an interaction with. People wanna do business with people who are passionate about what they do. People wanna do business with people who, they get to be a part of that creation process. They get to be a part of actually seeing this thing kind of start and then build into something else. Live content allows you to do that. So here's the cool thing about it. A great example in regards to wedding photography. Otherwise in scaling the unscalable. Let's say I go shoot a wedding. Okay, I shoot an amazing wedding. And I come back and what tends to happen is, if I'm lucky, a month later, th...
ree months later, a year later, I get an email or a phone call from someone who attended the wedding, and they're like, "Hey, I attended "so-and-so's wedding that you photographed, "and I got to see you out there. "I got to see your interaction "and your enthusiasm and your passion. "I got to see the way you interacted with the couple "and even their family. "You even said hi to me. "I got to see all that, and when I saw it "I like knew I want this guy to be my photographer. "I could picture you being my photographer "on my wedding day. "That's why I'm calling you. "That's why I'm reaching out and connecting with you." Shooting a wedding, that's not a scalable thing. It's not a scalable thing. I can shoot, like, how many weddings a year? It's not scalable. But going live while shooting a wedding suddenly takes the lid off the reach that I was previously limited to. Now, the closest thing that we had to this prior was vlogging, and still vlogs are very popular. Vlogging, right? Vlogging, you go out and you film, and you shoot, and you edit, and then you render, and then you gotta post it up, and it takes time, and then you gotta find an audience for this vlog. So vlogging was previously the thing that we would try to do to scale that. But even that, it took so much time and work and energy, and again you go and you put it on YouTube, and you gotta find an audience on YouTube. "Hey, go take a look at this." It's different now. Now, you simply pull out your phone, add a shoot, simply pull out your phone, and you press a button, and you are now live to an entire audience that is waiting. You get pushed out to everyone, and they're just waiting to see it. It's changed. This is scalable. This is so powerful. I hope this kind of gives you just a little bit of an idea of the power that live content has. But there's more. There's more. Attention. When you press go live, when you press live, you now have priority in all of your marketing efforts in all grids that are out there. Facebook, on Instagram, on Parascope, Twitter, on YouTube. You go live and you show up in people's feed. I go live today and you all follow me, it says, "Yo, Ben Hartley's live." "Bing, bing, bing, bing, bing. "Ben Hartley's live!" You show up in people's feed. Now, you post a picture on Instagram, you post a picture on Facebook, does it go to the very top? Do you get a notification that said, "Ben Hartley just posted a new status update?" You don't. You move to the top. You have attention now. Showing is always better than telling. Showing is better than telling, right? The best part of show and tell is never the tell, it's the show, right? It's the show. I could tell you about my passion. I could do a blog post about my passion. I could take a photograph on Instagram and caption it, and tell you all about my passion. Or I could show you. Or I could just bring you in on my world, and you can actually experience it and see it based off the way that I hold myself and the way I communicate, because it's just there, I can't hide it, it's passion. It's just there, it's coming out. Live content allows you to build trust, because with live content, you get to show your personality, you get to show your passion, you get to show your authenticity, you get to show your heart. When you show those things, trust is established. Trust is established with live content. And with trust comes relationship. People wanna do business with people that they know, people that they like, people that they trust. I wanna hire a second shooter who's my friend. I wanna hire a second shooter who I know, who I like, and who I trust. I don't wanna hire a second shooter who's a stranger. That's my first go-to. That's your clients' first go-to. Your clients are looking for people that they know, that they like, that they trust, that they have a relationship with. That's who they're looking for. Here's my favorite thing. One of my favorite things about live content is its inherent togetherness. Easily my favorite thing about live content. Your audience, they are a part of that creation process with you. They are. They're a part of that creation process with you. They get to shape it, they get to mold it based off of their interaction. When they comment, it changes things. You guys are familiar with Kickstarter, right? Kickstarter works by... They find backers who help bring an idea into reality by funding it. What makes a really great Kickstarter campaign is when it's less about you pay X and you get X. That's commerce, that's going to Wal-Mart, right? I'm gonna pay you X, I'm gonna get X. A great Kickstarter campaign makes the backers feel like they're a part of the creation process, that they're shaping it and they're molding it, and they get to change it. All that kind of stuff. That's what makes Kickstarter so successful, is when people actually back it, and they can see it come from idea to fruition, they're loyal, they're a part of it, and they want everyone else to be a part of it too. Facebook's kinda come out with some early data on this in regards to numbers behind live content, and so we're gonna talk about this. And these numbers that we're gonna talk about, my guesses are actually that these numbers are really underestimated, because this was early on, and live content has already taken so many turns, and it's already grown so much more since this, and so we're gonna still go with the conservative route here. Early on, three times more views. That inherent togetherness that we're talking about means that there's three more times views as prerecorded content. Because anything can happen. Anything can happen. You don't wanna look away. Anything can happen. That's what makes CreativeLive so awesome. This is one of the reasons... There's a number of reasons of its success, but this is one of them. I could eat it right now on this stage. Anything can happen. It means 10 times more comments on live content, because when people comment, it shapes the content right before their eyes. It's kind of like magic. It's kind of addicting. When you comment on a live post, and then that person who's going live interacts, and they're changing their dialog. And then it brings up somebody else's comment. Maybe somebody else asked a question in regards to it, and it just starts weaving. 10 times more comments. And lastly is this. Better get used to it. It's not going anywhere. We are in the early stages of it, and it's not going anywhere. There will be no hiding in 2018, '19, '20, '25, '30, there's gonna be no hiding behind a status update. This is me kinda pontificating here for a little bit. Live content is going to be a key component of any platform, any major platform moving forward. That's my guess. I'm not saying it's the only thing. I'm not saying it's all gonna be about live stream, live stream, live stream, but I'm gonna guess that it's gonna be an aspect to any key social component that's gonna come out in the next few years. And it's only gonna get crazier, with augmented reality, and virtual reality. It's next, and that's going to weave into live content. So, earlier I said something, and I kind of breathed past it, and I wanna come back to it. I said this. I said, "You are enough." I said, "You are enough." I said, "Your work's not enough, "Your IQ's not enough, your gear's not enough. "You are enough." I'll bet as photographers, as creatives, as artists, that kind of rubs us the wrong way. It's like you're putting your work out there, and your talent out there, and for me to say it's not enough, or even just the fact that so much of us is in that work and we're putting it out there, and I'll be that so many of you, when you see this, you thought this: "Nah, I don't feel like that. "I don't feel like I'm enough. "That's great for you, dude on CreativeLive. "I don't feel like I'm enough. "I don't feel like I'm interesting. "I don't feel like I have anything "to say out on live content. "I don't think I have anything to offer. "No one wants to watch me. "I'm not an extrovert." If you felt that way, you're in really good company. You're in really good company. Can I just remind you all that we are all people? We are all messed up? Anyone who looks like they got it all together, we're all messed up. I have to struggle and fight against this every single day, all the time. And for good reason. I wanna spend a considerable amount of time talking about this, because it's so important to why we're not doing more live videos. The reason that we feel inferior. One of them is because we live in a culture of exceptionalism. In Mark Manson's book, the Subtle Art of Not Giving a *. It's a very poignant title. (laughs) The Subtle Art of Not Giving a *. Mark Manson describes it as the culture of exceptionalism. And what he means is this. He explains that we are surrounded by the most extremes of all situations at all times. It's always right there for us. We are constantly inundated with the most beautiful people. When you turn on the news, it's the scariest news stories, often delivered by the most beautiful people, right? The most eccentric, the top 1% of quality of all things, the top 1% of imagery. You go and you pull a Pinterest or Instagram, you're seeing the best of the best of the very best, and it's always there. It's no wonder we feel inferior. It's no wonder we're terrified to go live and press a button, and put ourselves out there into the world when we are comparing ourselves to the top .2% of the population, at all times, in all things, independently from one another. It's not reality. We have to recognize the fact that that is not reality. And so the challenge is you're not in the top .2%. I'm not in the top .2%. You're not, we're not. So how do you find value in the present? If you're not there, how do you find value in the present? Right now, today, here, how do I find value in where I'm at right now? You're not where you wanna be. You're not. I'm not where I wanna be. Once you get 500 followers on Instagram, you're gonna want 1,000, and then you're gonna want 5,000 followers. Once you get that one award, that one fearless award, you're gonna get that one fearless award, and then you're gonna look at the guy who's got 32 fearless awards, and you're like, "I want that." We are not where we wanna be. However, dissatisfaction in your current condition, it's actually a good thing. To be dissatisfied in where you are at, it's not inherently bad. It's a good thing, right? It moves us forward. It's the human spirit of improving. However, if all you are is dissatisfied, if all you are is looking at what other people have, and you can't acknowledge the great gift and value that you have today, you're gonna sabotage your rate of growth. Stop looking at what other people have, and start looking at what's in your hands. It's right there, you've got amazing things. You have value in where you're at right now. The journey that you're on has value. Maybe you wanna be a full-time photographer and you're not. You're working a full-daytime job. Second shooting, maybe? Maybe you're dabbling? I don't know. What is the value in that? What's the value in where you are today? Working full-time job, second shooting for somebody else. There's so many things. Maybe it's the fact that you get to learn from someone who's gone before you. Maybe you can advance your career faster by learning from somebody else. Maybe you can build your portfolio. Maybe there's financial freedom, because it's like a second point of income. Maybe it's not a point of income at all. But you're meeting people, you're interacting, you're networking, you get a chance to learn what it's like to interact with the bride, you get a chance to meet vendors, florists, wedding planners, other photographers. Maybe it's the fact that you just get to spend more time with your kids. Again, today, stop looking at down the road, when you wanna be full-time and you wanna be crazy busy all the time, and start recognizing that you don't have to work on Saturdays every wedding. Enjoy spending time with your kids. Find value in the present where you are today. Speaking of kids, there's my little girl, Bea, little super girl. (laughs) She was three months old when I took this photograph. It hangs in my house at the top of the stairs. And when Bea was just like a tiny little thing, ever since she's been little to today, my wife has given me the opportunity to carry her to bed. I get to be the one to actually pick her up and hold her and carry her up the stairs, lay her down for her naps, carry her up the stairs and lay her down for bed, whenever given the opportunity. And it is an opportunity. It is such a joy. And every time that I have that chance to do that, I tell her all the things. "I love you, I'm proud of you, you make me happy." I tell her all these things, over and over and over. But the last thing I tell her when I put her into bed is this. I lay her down and I say, "I love you, Bea. "You're gonna do great and meaningful things. "You're gonna do great and meaningful things." You were created to do great and meaningful things. But okay, pump the breaks. What do I know? Yes, I'm her dad. You were created to do great and meaningful things? What do I know? What does that mean? It's not like she's born into royalty, or she's gonna take over some great responsibility and do great and meaningful things. For all I know, she could fail. She could trip and stumble and fall at every point and stage of life. Really, she could. But I know. I know she was created to do great and meaningful things. I know you were created to do great and meaningful things. I know I, to be quite frank, was created to do great and meaningful things. Somebody once pushed back at me, and they're like, "Hey man. "That's like a lotta weight you're putting "on your little girl's shoulders. "Like, great and meaningful things? "You should probably (snaps fingers) "dull it back a little bit." (laughs) And I was like, "Nah, nah, nah." 'Cause there's more, there's a reason why. There's a reason why you were created to do great and meaningful things. You were created to do great and meaningful things, not because of what you did or did not do, but because you were created. It's not about what you did or didn't do. You were created to do great and meaningful things because you were created. Let me break this down for just a hot second. There's two different ways to think about this, right? The God of the universe put you on this earth, called you by name. It's like straight-up miracle status. You were created to do great and meaningful things. You were created. And if that's too theistic for you, then let's go completely scientific, which I'm very okay with doing. 400 trillion to one. Mel Robbins says 400 trillion to one are the odds of being born to being human! 400 trillion to one. You could have been a tree, you could have been a mosquito someone's swatting at. You could have been a pheasant. Do pheasants fly? (audience laughs) I think pheasants fly, right? But you weren't, you aren't! You're a human! That's straight-up miracle status. One way or the other, whichever way you wanna view it, you're a miracle. And so I will always be the little hummingbird in my daughter's ear, letting her know of her miracle status. Her intrinsic, by the way, miracle status. The miracle status that can't be removed, can't be taken away. It doesn't matter what she did or did not do. She is straight-up miracle status, created to do great and meaningful things. Despite what somebody said about you, despite what somebody did to you, you were created. You were created. So when you start doubting, you hop into bed and say, "I was created to do great and meaningful things." When you are terrified, about to go live, and like, "No one wants to hear me," you're gonna go live and you're like, "Nah. "I don't wanna do that." You were created to do great and meaningful things. Remind yourself of that and say this. "I got this, I got this, "jump, I got this, jump." This is something I really firmly believe in, especially as photographers, as artists, as creative, as entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, is self worth, is confidence. I think we wrestle with it all the time. We are constantly having to put ourselves out there to the world and be okay with that. And that takes a toll on us. It's a challenge, but it's one that I think we need to be active in our pursuit of maintaining. I made a video. It's like 20 minutes long. I'm not going to go into it right now. Unpacking so many more beliefs and things that I do to elevate and maintain my confidence, to elevate and maintain my self-worth, to move through every day as a creative, as a business owner. I want you guys to go watch it. It's there for you. Sixfigurephotography.com/golive. It's like 20 minutes long, but I think it's gonna be worth your time at the end. There's a few other resources there that we'll get to later. But go and just watch that video. Go watch it.