Laura Pearman is a photographer but she’s taken a very interesting route to market and done some really creative things in terms of business model along the way. The digital marketing consultant and entrepreneur spectrum is very broad and Laura shows us, as you’ll find out, that at the end of the day - you are at the heart of it all.
Links and mentions
Laura's Instagram: @lpearmanphotos
Laura's ROI Checklist
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Automatic Show Transcript
Hi there. Thanks for joining me for this episode of gravity, the digital marketing entrepreneurs podcast. I'm Bob gentle and every week I'm joined by digital marketing business owners, creators, consultants and practitioners who share what makes their business work. Whether you run your own business, or you're just thinking of stepping out on your own for the first time, you're in the right place. If you're new to the podcast, and welcome along, just take a second right now to subscribe to the show and your podcast player. That way you won't miss new weekly episodes. And you can dig into some older ones when you finish this one. This week, I was speaking to Laura Peerman. Lauren is a photographer. And she's taken a very interesting route to market and done some very creative things in terms of a business model along the way. The digital marketing consultant and entrepreneur spectrum is very broad. And Laura shows us as you'll find out that at the end of the day, you are the heart of it all. So welcome along. And let's meet Laura pyramid. Welcome to the podcast. Thanks so much for joining me. You want to start by maybe telling us a little bit about who you are, where you are in the kind of work you do.
Yes, absolutely. First of all, Bob, thank you so much for having me on
You're absolutely welcome. I've been looking forward to this for a long time.
Yeah, we've been planning on getting around to it. And here we are finally. So right now I am in the northeast of the UK. I'm in a place a little place called Jarrow, which is right near to the time refer. And it is an absolutely gorgeous day. It's one of those days when you're an entrepreneur, and you sit down in the morning with the sun beaming through your windows and you like can I just cancel every 30 shall work from the pub, doing the little bunny rabbit fingers here. So I've been strongly thinking about that. I might do that after we finished today. Well, I'm glad you didn't
know. I couldn't let you down. We've been planning it for ages.
And you I believe are the first photographer I've had on the podcast.
Oh, well get me That's good. I like
yeah, did you take your quite an unusual perspective on photography or a particular niche? You want to maybe just take in or unpack that? Yeah,
of course. Yeah. So I think I'm
very, this might sound a bit weird. But I am very Gemini, in a lot of ways. I am a Gemini from the star signs. But I love this idea of duality. And the more and more I reflect on that the more and more I realize I'm actually living my life like that. So I initially started my education in the world of marketing and public relations. That was actually my first degree. And I went off for different jobs in that and thought I'm not really being creative enough. You know, I wish I could be more creative. Where did the creative kids hang out within the marketing space? And actually, it was working out with that all of the creators are hired in so I thought, Oh, no, I'm not really in the right space here. And went off to travel I find myself like most of the 20 something backpackers who are in the world. And eventually, in a very long winded way got into photography. And noticed when I was in the photography space, from even from like studying in college, I was really, like punctual. I like to get things done in the right way. I loved managing people, I love project managing. And I loved unpacking and thinking about how things worked from a marketing point of view. So how would this image sit in a magazine? How and
if I didn't fit
there, right? So I'm kind of one of these people, where I'm kind of ping pong balling between these two worlds. So that's where the creation of this quite unique and different businesses come from. It's because I've kind of realized I am a bit of a freak, I don't fully fit in world world, I don't really fully fit in that world. So I'll just keep trying between the two.
And what is it? How would you sum up what pays the bills these days?
Okay, so I am primarily a headshot photographer. And right now we have, I think it's probably a bit of a trend, I don't know how long the trend is going to last for. But we're in a trend now where we've got a big surge in online entrepreneurs. And they are focusing right now a lot on personal branding. So a couple of years ago, they were all really into talking about lifestyle photography, because they were wanting to show the world that they were building this lifestyle business. So from a real macro perspective, I think that we are seeing a massive shift now people are getting made redundant. Or maybe mothers and you know, fathers are doing the paternity and maternity leave and thinking, right? How can we just stay at home and make money. So we've got this big Exodus now into the online space where people are generating money. So I kind of hopping on that trend, I suppose in that I'm bringing my marketing know how when it comes to analyzing brands and analyzing, you know, demographics call to action, quite basic marketing stuff, but how that is interpreted through headshots. So right now, the main thing that's paying my bills is shooting headshots for online entrepreneurs. And I've dabbled a little bit in expanding that. So I'm offering like speaker photography packages, I've been doing that for probably the last two years or so maybe two and a half years. And my theory behind that was that percentage of people who I serve, you get a lot of online entrepreneurs who speak and that's a big generator for their business model. And I figured if I offer them a service that actually fulfills a direct need, then I can slowly work my way into my little charm offensive, and then they'll use me as a headshots photographer. But actually, I found that that percentage is a lot smaller than I think. So right now I'll be fully transparent and tell everyone who's listening to this, that we're looking at a way to kind of shift that a little bit. But still, the majority of our money is going out and doing headshot photography. For online entrepreneurs, we've got the online thing that we're slowly building, which we can get to later on. But that is the main bright women in right now.
I think one place I'd like to go is maybe, and I know this from my own experience that a great headshot. This is sounds a little bit like an assassin, a great headshot can be a game changer. Obviously, if it's the wrong kind of headshot is a game changer.
It really kind of Yeah, it really can I we offer a wide rate we have four different services. So it goes from like the quick half hour, and very little planning, but just a great technical shot. So you know, you can use it and look professional, right through to like a whole day eight hour shoot, where we've got a stylist and changing your outfit, you've got, you know, maybe a bit of beauty prep, including the management of your prep in the run up to the day. So you really do look like your best self. But it doesn't matter, it's usually irrelevant in that if somebody has gone from having just a selfie or a quick dry Joby to even my most basic level, it does, it makes a big difference in how you're presenting yourself to the online world. But I think it's also a bit of a internal mental shift. You're proud of that headshot now and you're happy to put yourself out there just a little bit more. And a, it has a shift in that respect. And then I suppose when we usually people come in on that quick surface with me the turbo service. And then over time, they progress up through the different services to my top and one that I just described, they're called the full show army service. And that one is market, it's engineered from a marketing point of view to make sure that it's almost a viral shoot. So everyone in the crew on shoot day is tweeting Instagram, and they're making sure that the everyone in the world knows who you are, what your call to action is. And by the way, you run a headshot session. And then after that we do a big Harrar again with a lovely vlog, where we do we do from behind the scenes footage of me taking the photos to what the shoot the images looked at, like at the end to you talking about how you feel and what changes it's made to your business. So that is almost shifting into the area of making this a marketing campaign within its its own right, I suppose when you get to that level?
Yeah. I think one
place I'd like to go is confidence. Yeah. Because you mentioned that briefly that a great headshot, when you start using it online, via Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, it will make a difference to how people engage with you're on those platforms. And I know from my own experience, that once you have a great headshot, you feel much more confident to be present on those platforms. It's a strange thing. But do you have any good stories about direct impact of a headshot on somebody's business?
Yes, I've got I've got a lot, I'm trying to think of a good one that I can share here. So I had a lady last year who she worked in the financial planning space, and she was going in as like an independent contractor or freelancer. And helping charities mainly work on their financials to make sure that they were creating more revenue. So quite a dry area of the world really, when you look at it through my eyes anyway. But I really got on with this girl and she said, Look, I want to make a big splash here. But I am terrified. Like we don't do this in the finance world. It's not something we're not show offs. You know, like all of you we have creatives. So we we went all whole hog. And we did a whole day of photography fee based around the idea of decadence and opulence she wanted to build out her business so that she was going to be entering into the online space. And her ultimate goal is to build a membership for any CEO, but it's mainly female, female business owners who are also online, but even if they're just doing a service or a product, but it's getting smart with numbers. So she's kind of tackling all of those stereotypes where women have put to shit call it it's like the princess theory where you think that you're going to meet prince charming and he's going to take care of you. So she's she's got all these great stories. So for me as the headshots photographer, it was about putting all of those great stories and theories into her photos. And she made such a huge splash within the finance world, she was able to launch her membership with a big band. With the support of these photographs. And Pete she's found that that has that lovely effect of a personal brand where she's repelling them wrong people away from her but attracting the people who just fall in love with her online. And from knowing her before and after this section. It's it's a total game changer. She was really shy and reserved and quite quiet. And here she has now the like the figurehead of a
whole new business venture. It's incredible.
Yeah, it's really like you've got that big, flashy flag out front. And it makes you much more confident to then stand behind that. That's right.
Yeah. And even I think if you are quite a shy person, maybe the idea of guesting on somebody else's blog show fills you with terror, you can actually make a great headshot part of creating almost a bit of a confidence barrier. If you have a really good headshot. There you go. You can start guesting on podcast shows and try that as a star when no one's going to see your moving face. But you've got this one image that you know is going to open some doors. I don't know if this is something that you agree with Bob but lot of podcast hosts that I've worked with over the years, I much prefer guests to come ready with great visual assets because it just improves the overall quality of the show. Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. So I think if you're a little more shy, you know, swallowing but biting that bullet to get the first headshot is a great way to just kind of start making progress in the online space, especially when it comes to content creation.
The way you describe what you do, it reminds me a little bit of Mark Schaefer, he wrote a book, he's written lots of books, one of the books that he taught, never stopping. I remember one of the ways he describes content is as a pyramid, at the top of the pyramid, you have hero content, slightly lower down the pyramid, you have hub content at the bottom of the pyramid, you have hygiene content. And the reason it's a pyramid is it's talking about the frequency of production and the production. So at the bottom of the pyramid, you're doing it a lot, and it's quite easy to do. But the production value is quite low. And the higher up the pyramid you get, the higher the production value, and the more difficult it is, and the less frequently you do it. And I think in photography terms, your work really sets at the top of the pyramid as the hero content. And a lot of businesses don't produce hero content themselves. And so if it's, if it's written content, it's a long form ebook or a book. If it's video content, and it's the high production corporate video type thing. Yeah. And in photography, it's great headshots, and great documentary footage. And not very many people do it. Yeah. But it's essential part. Yes,
it is essential. Absolutely. And if you want to build out that pyramid, and it's about, you know, another book that he did was being known, you want to be known for something, but if you keep pushing out this hatching content, you're not gonna really get known for anything, because everyone else is doing that all the time as well.
Yeah. But if you do focus on the balance in that pyramid, you can almost sort of relax about the hygiene because it's easy to ridiculously so and everybody's doing it. So you will not stand out. That's right. Yeah. But actually take a step or two up the pyramid. Suddenly, it's very quiet. And certainly knowing who you work with, and I do know who you work with. They stand out.
they want to stand out a lot of fighting. Now, as we've progressed through time, just a short, late, I'm talking about five years of building this up, people are a lot more savvy now in the way that they want to be seen online and the way that they can implement headshots for themselves. I'm getting to the point now where clients are coming to me usually repeat clients and they're late, right, we've got an idea for a specific launch, I want to launch this particular thing, we're going to be doing an ad set in this style. So can we do a shoot that promotes just that?
And that's all they'll use bad shots for
it get in really complicated, but it just shows you how quickly this world that we're working in is starting to evolve, it's going to be really fascinating to see where we're at in like five years time, I think.
Yeah, I think specifically things like Facebook ads, they depend so much on that really clever use of an image.
Yeah, it can make all the difference,
though, it does make all the difference. And I've run some really what I thought were clever Facebook ads, and it just bombed because the image was just too dark to tell it wasn't inspiring. Just very, very odd sometimes, but the right image, right correctly thought through will have a big impact. Looking at the rest of that pyramid, obviously the hero shots, great. If you need to get those hero shots, you need somebody like a Laura pyramid. But a lot of us really struggle with the hub content as well, the sort of day to day photography. And that's true. the realm of the selfie. And I know on your website and in, in your world as well, you do talk a lot about the selfie. It's not all about the higher Laura pyramid to do the photography, but it's okay. You need to get it right. Give me a ring. But day to day you need to be taking care of yourself as well.
Absolutely, yeah, it's something I've started to feel very passionately about. So I've come at this, again, typical Gemini from two different angles. The first thing was, I noticed that a lot of people who I kind of wanted to work with were kicking out good selfies. And initially, that put me off a bit and I thought all know once and they won't want to work with me because they clearly have mastered their phone. So then I decided right, okay, I'm going to do my own little selfie strategy here. You know, it's a very typical thing. I think anyone, when you work in a certain industry, you're the last one that gets served in that industry, right? So I have to really work hard to make sure my headshots
are up to snuff. The cobblers children never have new shoes, right? So,
um, what was where was I so we get when it when it comes to that, I noticed that when I was doing these selfies, I wasn't sharing them anywhere online. When I was taking them, it was bringing up quite a lot of self confidence stuff for me to say, Oh, you know that, that doesn't look good. And I thought right if I'm either I'm overly critical, or this is the process that everyone goes through when they try to take a selfie. Isn't that interesting. So then again, that you ality thing kicks in and get your butt over the top and headshots photographer, I probably shouldn't really be talking about selfies. And then I actually thought, No, hang on, I'm going to test this out. And I'm going to share my journey with this. And that was where the love your selfie challenge kind of came from. And right now behind the scenes, we're doing a little bit more of a beta test on that to see if we can offer a little bit more of a very clear, subscription style service. But everyone else feels the same way. And I've noticed that women are a lot more forthcoming about sharing their feelings. Well, big
work week do that anyway.
But it's an interesting thing people have have been putting off investing time or energy or money into a top and headshot because of their preconceptions about themselves. So actually, when you look at it from a headshots photographer point of view, you will never going to get those people anyway. So it makes more sense. Obviously, from a personal point of view, I would love to know that from a like a legacy piece that I've helped more people around the world feel better about themselves. And they are better equipped to document their own lives. That's the ultimate goal here. But from the more direct money and converting side, we are kind of building people know that training themselves with their own equipment, which we all have in our mobile phones, by the way to figure out how to use the damn camera up, and also how to document alive. So with this search that we were talking about at the beginning of the podcast with personal branding, that is absolutely hope content, talk about, I don't know, maybe you take Friday's off because you want to be with your kids, or maybe having a really nutritional a really nutritious diet really does help you as a financial partner. Well, so what that's a personal thing, why not do some selfies of you in the kitchen, cook it up. So it's, it doesn't feel right for me to go in there and be the top and headshots photographer, you know, you're just doing the school meal prep, you should be doing that with the selfie. So that's where we've got, we've got the five day challenge, which I'm more than happy for any listener to come on and have it go out. And it basically goes through five little techniques of how to use your phone camera. So it's a little bit like phone are Griffey technical, but it's also wrapped in phone and self confidence and silly little games that you can play while you're doing it. So you can kind of get over your own self confidence stuff.
And that's a challenge people can join anytime,
it's it's just about gone evergreen, now we've just finished the last bits on it going evergreen, so that should be live, by the time this podcast goes out.
I will go and join it myself. Because as you know, this is something I struggle with a
lot. Yes, I'm looking forward to seeing you there. But
I'm interested to speak about your event photography a bit because I see you like you seem to be flying more than Richard Branson.
I wish I was fine. The same class that
I saw you were out to Social Media Marketing World, let's look at that. How was Social Media Marketing World for you,
I really enjoy that event. So the first the first time I went, I think I fell into the same trap. Everyone who goes there for the first 10 days and I had back to back schedule, you know, you've got this beautiful brochure when you sign in and get your little lanyard and your badge. And it's a whole program of everything that's available. And the marketer in me was like on steroids, oh my goodness, this algorithm or that how that's how you do box, or this is how you to Facebook ads, because that actually does interest me. And then by the end of that first trip, so that was 2017. My first one, by the end of that I realized, oh, there's a whole other set of things that are happening as kind of like satellite events around the main conference. And by the last day, I found myself I was just kind of walking around, they have a big networking Plaza there. I thought yeah, this is where I need to be. This is where the people who are likely to convert into headshot clients are going to be hanging out. So I've been for 2018 and 2019. And I've kind of gone more into that lot of space. So I think I this year, I went to two talks, maybe in the flesh. And that was to fill some time in between networking drinks, or going to private parties or going out to dinner. And so it's an interesting one, I still have all the content, of course that me and my team will have to go back through the brochure when I get back and right yeah, we do need a bone up a little bit on this thing with Pinterest now and go back and listen to that. But I found it's an interesting event from that respect, because it's so multi track, you can very easily drown and gorge on all of this content. But actually, people have come from all over the world to this beautiful part of the world. It makes so much more sense for me in my business, to meet those people and network with them, and then hopefully shoot with them. Under that lovely San Diego sun.
Yeah. Oh, sorry, I was watching from the site. And it did look very nice.
It was beautiful. They said it was a little bit later on. So the weather was much better. I know it's a little earlier on next year. So it'll be interesting from a weather point of view. But you said this is the headshots we talked about are coming out now I have to get really, I keep going a lot before I go overseas or to a new location, I started watching the winner like a month in advance, and figuring out when golden hours going to be and all that geeky stuff to make sure that the people that have booked me get the absolute best service. So I will see how it is I'm sure it'll be much nicer than February here in the UK. Of course.
One thing that you do quite often at events is you will book lots of speaking shots for headshots for attendees. Yes, I've seen that quite often. And I'm really curious to know, how does that work with locations? Are you depending on and this is something that's kind of bugged me a little bit with photographers over the year in general, that you booked photographer, and then the photographer wants you to have arranged everything.
You say, I am not that person. And I remember those people and I
do know a few of those photographers. But yeah, it doesn't work that way. If you're if you're out of town, or then you're paying me for a service and the services for me to have burned up on the place. So a good example of this is I worked at a fitness retreat, as the in retreat photographer in my bed. I've never been a more bear my life. But I spent about three or four days in Google Maps as the little yellow guy, looking out all the best places to shoot out how you get in those places do I need to get permission from anyone ringing ahead, making sure that hotels with lovely lobbies would let me shoot in there, kind of creating pre deals with them. So that when you're there with me on the shoe, I've got a couple of different routes that we can take, probably weather contingencies are in there as well. But when we pull up to this lovely lobby, and I know you're going to love it, and you've got all that gorgeous, yeah, let's shoot in here, I just need to give like a little nod to the guy who's behind reception because it's all been pre agreed. So if I can't get in there in person to go the day before and say right, I'll be coming back here tomorrow with a big rucksack on my back and a client, I need you to be nice to the client. And I've already agreed this, if I can't do that in the flesh, I will be getting in touch with them ahead of time. So I tried to not leave anything to the last minute. And when you have to which I know a lot of my fellow photographers like to do or Yeah, they just can't be bothered, they can't be bothered to do their work and look ahead and make sure that their clients have a great service.
And I can't tell you how important that is. Because as the customer, you're anxious already, just the fact you've hired a photographer, yeah, 70% of people will be super anxious. And if you then walk into a venue and everybody's kind of looking over their shoulder going Quick, quick, somebody's coming to get it done fast. Yeah, boy, can't smile anymore.
Yeah, it fully translates to your pictures. So when you're looking at their pictures, all you see is you look a bit nervous and worried that you're going to get kicked out, you don't want that to be done your headshot at all.
Another thing that I've worked with lots of photographers, and one photographer in particular got it right, he could see straightaway, I didn't know how to smile for a camera, as something that you spoke about before we started recording, it kind of triggered this particular area of conversation, that people are not natural models. And one thing that I know, you do, because I've read about it is you're very good at working with the people to get the picture. And photography is not all about how to use a camera,
oh, hundred percent, you know, you know this, say what you learn at a drive before you you do your test. And then you pass your test and you let you shoot a cocky 17 year old who of course, it's fine. I've got along since the year after that is when you learn to drive. It's exactly the same with photography. So I spent two years learning all of the intricacies and all of the geeky things about photography, retouching image processing, and a little bit on how to build for a job and how to plan a shoot but not really very much because the college's on that's not what they're there to teach. And then when you actually go into industry, you realize this photography, business is only a tiny little fraction of the job. And if you want to work with people, that is the majority of it, you have to be able to respond. So I think I had a bit of a baptism of fire with Bob in that when I first came out of college like 10 years ago, I went and worked in a family studio. So I was dealing with like crying, babies vomited up the walls, parents getting really stressed out and yelling at their children. I really went through the wringer with it. But it must have really helped me with learning. I like to call it you photographer crack. So it's like the banner you have as a photographer. And it makes all the difference in the show. So you can pick up when you're on a shoot as a photographer, you want it to feel like it's this seamless process and the photographer had your back because you felt a bit nervous. So like we've we've just said that with the basic surface stuff they've planned out, they've got all of the pre agreement, things that they needed to as part of the service, it's all taken care of. But actually, there's an undercurrent there, it's a bit like the iceberg thing that they show you in marketing. So these are the things that we have above the water. And it's a big thing under the water. It's all the stuff under the water. So I might be noticing that actually, you've seen a blink a lot, you've got quite sensitive eyes. So it's not good to have you in a certain type of light. And whatever I do, I'm not going to say you've got a bit of a brain blinker problem there may because we're not going to talk about it, because that's just going to make you feel even more uncomfortable. But I know now from my years of experience, the things that we can do, to try and avoid having you with one eye shot on every single image. And I'm just going to run you through those exercises on repeat, and make it seem like it's the easiest, most fun, silly thing in the world. So that over time you relax, and then there you go, we're getting the magic. And another thing I love to do with clients, and this is something from working with, like little toddlers is just having a constant conversation. So I'm doing all of that subliminally. And we might be talking about how you're going on holiday to x place Morales. And I want to get you laughing as much as possible. So I'm like a real clown in a city goofing around making a real laughs of myself, because all I want you to do is to laugh naturally. And then I'm quickly catching it. and nine times out of 10. When you see those laughter ones you like, Oh, I didn't even realize you were taking pictures that I really like that shot and there you go, we've got the shot, you've got to do what you need to to get the shot. But only over time as a photographer, do you learn the ways that you pull that out of the person. So I know like in the fashion world, when I worked there briefly, a lot of the time, there was a real disconnect between the photographer and the model. So the model comes in, and she has her own little posing routine that she does. And she probably doesn't really engage or talk to the photographer, unless the cameras in front of their face. And similarly, the photographers the same, the photographer might be rude and horrible, because he wants to get a real kind of bitchy look out of the model. So it's a very different world. I think that's one of the reasons I'm not in the fashion world. Because I don't like that I like to really connect with the person that I'm photographing and understand them on a deeper level. So yeah, it's all down to the experience is the short answer to that
makes a lot of sense. And what I would also say is, having worked with a professional photographer once the really really got it,
that is that something you can take into your hub content, simply knowing what your face is supposed to feel like when you're actually smiling to the camera. It's actually quite different to the way you think your face feels when
we so we all have like a bad habit. So if you are a fan of friends, you know, the Chancellor smiling face when he's getting the wedding photos. And that's something we've gone through a lot in the love your selfie stuff that we're putting out now. And if you do this, like I always do an open mouth smile. And if I've had a few to drink, like an event party, you know, with us, the goofy smile is comin out every time look back at it, like are you doing that, again, or so that's my habit. We all have two or three of these posing habits. But like you say, when you've worked with a professional, and they know how to kind of teach you on how to hold your face, it's about the muscle memory. And over time, when you work close muscles, you realize, Oh, this is what it feels like to make that face. So yeah, it works great. And you'll have content when you're at home doing your own selfies for yourself.
So if you ever wanted a good reason to go and hire Laura at an event, that's it right there. It's not just a one shot deal. It's a great investment over time.
Yes, it's a life.
So you mentioned a couple of things that you're doing in your business, you've got the event photography, you've got a headshot photography, on top, so to speak. You've got some other things going on as well, that are more sort of product ties. But that you're kind of just at the beginning stages that That's right. How do you want to grow that so because you mentioned members? Well,
it's an interesting one. So I know that sometimes you gave your guests tips and advice. So again, feel free to jump on in on this. So we built out the love your selfie challenge to start with. And I'm really keen to not become one of the photographers out there who makes such a success online with an online business that they have to stop being a photographer day to day. So I really ideally love being a photographer. But my ideal lifestyle balance would be to maybe shoot one killer, amazing headshot session a month. And it's hard like a good two months, planning time into it. So it works like clockwork, there's a whole crew on set. But I need that to happen every month. So right now it does work, we have a spread between the four services that I talked through area. So this is where the creation of the online thing. That was the main impetus behind it, I noticed I had this fascination with selfies, I saw that there's a lot of photographers out there who were teaching, just photo graffiti. But that didn't really fit into the rest of my, my system of my business. So that's why we went down the route of selfies. So we've we've tried it a few different ways right now we're carrying out a beta test where it's going to be I'm calling it the love your selfie in spouse corruption. So you subscribe, but we know we've subscribed to everything, no don't mean Netflix, Hello Fresh, and you name it, you can get a subscription for it as well as business product. So I thought I would wonder what that looks and feels like. So if you're trying to be a little bit more comfortable with your selfies, and you're not really interested in buying another online course, for a high amount of money, why not have this come in as a little monthly, like a one monthly challenge, you get a basic, full of graffiti skill taught to you. And you get a whole bunch of different inspirational ideas for so for the rest of that month. While you're awake, creating your hub content, you have everything you could possibly need to take some great selfies to push out in your social media. So right now, we're testing that it's in a beta test. I've got a small group of my ideal demographic working their way through that. But I'm trying to know, guess what's going to happen come September when that ends? And I don't know if it's gonna work. I'm not sure because I've noticed that everyone's loving the inspiration, but nobody's actually taking action. So does it feel better to put that out, as of course, I'm not sure right now we have a few You're right, we have a few different online products where I could do just mood boarding and kind of help you conceive your personal branding, and how that looks from a visual point of view. So that's an online product that we have, we have more of a selfie strategy. So I come in and find out what you haven't in the way of visual I sets in your business. And I help you navigate how you need to put that out in just hope content all on your own. So it's kind of a little bit done for you. But you have to do the heavy lifting of taking the photos. And and I have to be honest, those online products are not getting the kind of engagement that I wanted them to yet. So I don't know if this, the beta test is going to prove my doubt that people are just too lazy. And they like to subscribe to inspiration, but they don't want to take action. In which case does it make more sense for them to get maybe a nice little robust how to book with a toolkit built in? I really don't know, it's an interesting thing. I think with the online space in particular, I've noticed as a creative, I could come up with ideas, no problem till the cows come home. But actually, when you get into the nitty gritty of building the online business out, a lot of it has to be down to trial and error at every single step of the way.
Yeah, and I think testing things. repeatedly, eventually something will stick. But I guess it really brings me on to the next question, which is what does your marketing look like? How reflect back on how do I know Laura p pyramid? And it's really through other people's communities? Yes. And I noticed you recently started. I know you had a YouTube channel for a while. But you were talking about building that up again?
Yes, we're back with a vengeance on YouTube.
And potentially owning your own audience will allow you to reach those customers that actually needs specifically what you've got. Yes. Certainly the people. I know it's a long game. But if you play the long game, actually, the odds of winning are quite high. Yes, it's
sticking in, isn't it? And like you say testing it and being very, very particular in
the way that you're building up funnels.
What looking all the time where where are people exiting? What was the feedback there? Why are they doing that? And yeah, it's just a very, in comparison to delivering direct service is so much more slow paced. You're absolutely right.
Yeah, but certainly, I think the visual element of personal branding is ridiculously important. I would say it's almost more important than any other element of content marketing. It's just, it opens everything else
changer. It's a game changer. It doesn't matter what
business you've got. If you're relatable to online, people will love or hate you. But that makes your life so much easier as a marketer because you, you know how to dial that up even more and become even more divisive. So you have these fans that adore and love every single thing you do sure you can have a few little haters along the way. But isn't it much easier to have this tribe of dedicated loyal fans, otherwise, he will just buy anything from you. It really does make a big difference. I mean, in the higher end of my business were in early days of building out a lot more of a personal like your personal private photographer. So kind of taking inspiration from Gary Vee and D rock, I suppose, is looking at how can we, you know, I've contacted my top tier clients who have maybe asked me for an NDA agreement. So you actually don't even see their pictures online? Because I've promised them that I won't share them in my marketing. What does it look like to them to have a personal photographer so we're looking at maybe building that out a little bit more, but again, early days with that, so I'll have to come back on the show Bob in like a year and tell you how it all went?
Well that sounds like a date.
Okay, let's do it. So,
Laura, if people want to connect with you, how would you like them to do that?
So I love to play on, stick around.
Surprise, surprise. The photographer like said stick around and you can find me on Instagram. My hangout is L. Pearman photos. Pearman is like the fruit with man on the end. So I'm often on stories, just goofing around being silly.
But I love playing on Instagram, the more so that's where you're gonna get the real me.
I'll put a link to that in the show notes. Oh, fantastic.
Laura. You've been a great guest. Thank you so much for your time. I will have you back in a year. Yes. See what's
I hope you enjoyed hearing Laurel story as much as I did talking to her. Laura's focus on her niche has really paid off her reputation is soaring within a very defined target market. It felt challenged or energized by the idea of Laura's selfie challenge, then go and check it out. And I think I might need to get stuck into before I go. Just a quick reminder to subscribe and if you haven't already, join our Facebook group. You can find the link from the website Bob gentle.com or just search gravity, digital marketing and Facebook and you'll find us easily. If you did enjoy the show than I'd love you to review the show on iTunes. It would mean a lot to me, and it's the very best way to help me reach more subscribers. My name is Bob gentle thanks again to Laura for giving me your time this week, to you for listening. See you next week.