91 - Your Printed and Online Image Represents You: Tom talks Business Graphics - Screw The Commute

91 – Your Printed and Online Image Represents You: Tom talks Business Graphics

Business Graphics. This is something people spend a fortune on unnecessarily, which just makes it harder for their business to be profitable. I’m not saying there aren’t times when you should hire a real pro to do some graphics. I’m just saying you can get high quality graphics very cheaply and you can do many yourself with the cheap and free tools available now.

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Screw The Commute Podcast Show Notes Episode 091

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[03:13] Tom's introduction to Business Graphics

[04:21] High and low resolution graphics

[07:19] You can you save a lot of money

[10:10] Services for business graphics

[15:55] Photo manipulation

[17:17] Apps for your smartphone

[18:30] Copyrights

[21:27] Themes

Entrepreneurial Resources Mentioned in This Podcast

Higher Education Webinar – It's the second webinar on the page: https://screwthecommute.com/webinars

Screw The Commutehttps://screwthecommute.com/

entrepreneurship distance learning school, home based business, lifestyle business

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Know a young person for our Youth Episode Series? Send an email to Tom! – orders@antion.com







Tailor Brandshttps://www.tailorbrands.com

Poster My Wallhttps://www.postermywall.com



Buffer Stories Creatorhttps://buffer.com/stories-creator




Thrive Themeshttp://thrivethemes.com/affiliates/ref.php?id=1213

Photo Collagehttps://itunes.apple.com/us/app/photo-collage-collageable/id1085652055

Photo Mirrorhttps://itunes.apple.com/us/app/photo-mirror-effects-reflection-editor/id1019418266

Photo Wonderhttps://itunes.apple.com/us/app/photo-wonder/id501945443

Afterlight 2https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/afterlight-2/id1293122457


Internet Marketing Training Centerhttps://imtcva.org/

Related Episodes

Tiffani Hockings – https://screwthecommute.com/SYE1/

Copywriting – https://screwthecommute.com/13/

Gayl Murphy – https://screwthecommute.com/90/

Robert Siciliano – https://screwthecommute.com/92/

More Entrepreneurial Resources for Home Based Business, Lifestyle Business, Passive Income, Professional Speaking and Online Business

I discovered a great new headline / subject line / subheading generator that will actually analyze which headlines and subject lines are best for your market. I negotiated a deal with the developer of this revolutionary and inexpensive software. Oh, and it's good on Mac and PC. Go here: http://jvz1.com/c/41743/183906

The WordPress Ecourse. Learn how to Make World Class Websites for $20 or less. https://www.GreatInternetMarketing.com/wordpressecourse

Build a website, wordpress training, wordpress website, web design

Entrepreneurial Facebook Group

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entrepreneurship distance learning school, home based business, lifestyle business

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Episode 091 Today we’re going to talk about Business Graphics. I know it doesn’t sound like a real sexy topic but I’ll tell you what, you could save and make yourself a lot of money with proper use of business graphics and how to get them really, really, cheap.
Last Episode 090 Gayl Murphy The original traffic tootsie in Los Angeles. She is a long time Hollywood correspondent and she’ll teach you how to do a great interview without getting clobbered.
Our Podcast App. Is in the iTunes store. You can also go to https://www.ScrewTheCommute.com/app where we have complete instructions to show you how to use all the fancy features so you can take us with you on the road and put in on your cell phone and tablet.
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Main Event
Business graphics. This is something people spend a fortune on unnecessarily which just makes it harder for their business to be profitable. I’m not saying there aren’t times when you should hire a real pro to do some graphics. I’m just saying you can get high quality graphics very cheaply and you can do many yourself with the cheap and free tools available now.
What are business graphics and where are they needed? Business graphics are your website and blog headers, charts and graphs. Your YouTube channel, Facebook and Instagram stories and ads, Pinterest, Twitter and whatever other social media you use. Almost all of them use graphics.
Business graphics also include pictures like headshots and action shots of you, your employees and products. And don’t forget shots of your customers if they don’t mind. Many of them would be honored to be asked to be on your blog or website.
Some graphics can be funky like a handwritten or scribbled note and some need to be sharp. You need high a low-resolution graphics. Low resolution is for the web and high resolution is for print. Let’s talk about that for a minute. People make this mistake all the time. They take a picture with their iPhone which I think automatically takes the highest quality and highest resolution picture it can. Then they upload that high-resolution picture to their website. What you have just done is slow your webpage loading down terribly and the picture won’t look any better.
Why won’t it look any better? Because computer screens….even the best ones only can display about 72 dots per inch. I think even the highest super-duper ones can only do 96 dots per inch. This is considered low resolution. So, when you upload your 300 dots per inch high resolution photo up to your website, you are doing nothing but hurting yourself by slowing down your page load time. Google came out a couple years ago and said if your website doesn’t load instantly, you’ll never see the light of day in the search results and even if you did, people wouldn’t wait around for your page to load.
On the other hand, if you have brochures and flyers or maybe you speak for a living and your picture is going to be printed in an event program, you MUST use high resolution graphics or your graphic will look terrible. So, Print is high resolution and web is low resolution. You always start with high resolution and adapt it down for web use. That way you have the high-resolution graphic if you ever need it for print, but for the web you will convert a copy to low resolution. Also, I need to say that you can always reduce the resolution if your original graphic is high resolution, but you can’t take a low-resolution graphic and turn it into a high-resolution graphic. It just doesn’t work that way.
It’s just like this podcast. We record it at the highest quality possible and then when it’s distributed online, we make a lower quality copy that’s small enough to stream so you can listen to it. The quality difference to you is almost imperceptible, but the file size is 10 times smaller and streaming speed is much faster so it can get through the Internet without stuttering and long download problems.
Cost Savings
Let’s talk about how much money you can save. A professional graphic artist or graphics firm will probably charge you from $250.00 on the low end to several thousand dollars on the high end and that’s just for a logo. Have them do all the other graphics I mentioned and you could get a bill for $15,000.00 or more.
This falls under the name of “branding” which just makes me sick. People talk you into spending fortunes on “branding” when you haven’t brought in a nickel yet in sales. Most small business owners brand themselves right into the poor house. Put out good products and services and your customers will tell you what your brand is. That’s a whole other podcast. What I want you to know is that you don’t have to spend a fortune to look great in your business. In this podcast I’m going to tell you how to do it.
Here’s an example. Long before digital cameras became commonplace, I had to spend over $400.00 to get good shots of my products and that was for each product. I had to go to a product shot specialist and spend half a day with them to get the shot. Then I had to wait a week for them to develop the large format pictures and get me a contact sheet to pick from. It was quite an ordeal.
Also, it’s kind of ironic that for many of these products we sold 4 times more writing advertorials where there’s no picture of the product at all. The only picture the customer got was the one I painted in their mind with good copywriting. I covered copywriting and advertorials in episode 13 of this podcast. It’s really worth it to go back and listen to that because that’s the number one skill I’ve identified in my entire 40 + years of business.
Anyway, after digital cameras came along it saved me a fortune in product shots. I still use a beautiful shot to this day with an audio album of mine on a beautiful flowing blue background LOL The shot was taken in my laundry room. I had an old ratty blue t-shirt I used as a rag and draped it over the back of a folding chair. I sat the audio album on the chair and shot a bunch of pictures closeup. It was just as good as the $400.00 spend half a day and wait a week product shots I was forced to use in the past.
So now I’ll tell you about some services you can use to get business graphics and then later I’ll cover some of the do it yourself tools we use.
If you want the cheapest possible way for someone else to create the graphics you need, visit https://www.Fiverr.com this is a place where tens of thousands of people around the world tell you what they’ll do for you for 5 bucks. Nowadays many of the vendors there have upgrades for additional money maybe 15 bucks or 25 bucks, but you’d be surprised what you can get for five bucks. And you can get way more than graphics. It’s a great place to look around. I got the voiceover for the opening to this podcast for 5 bucks and I’ve gotten beautiful radio commercials for 5 bucks and funny promotional pictures and lots of other stuff.
Make sure you check the reviews of people and if you get a really good job, make sure you keep track of that vendor so you can use them again later.
Some people I’ve talked to have said they hated fiverr and got nothing but crap. I suggest they didn’t really use it correctly. First of all, you must understand, many of these vendors are in third world countries and English is not their first language. You must be extremely simple and clear in your instructions of what you want. That’s a good idea whatever you are working on. Secondly, this is dirt cheap. You could literally have 50 different people working on your graphic and come out the same price as one cheap professional designer. Just Think about that. 50 times cheaper so c’mon now. Don’t complain if your 5-dollar graphic doesn’t suit you. I almost always put at least 5 different people working on a job at the same time and it’s really chump change and speeds up the process, i.e. I don’t try one and then another and then another. I do them all at the same time and for cheap I have 5 different graphics to pick from and I usually have them all in a couple days although most people will expedite your job for another 5 bucks.
Next up you have places like https://www.Logomatics.com that will make you a logo and give you unlimited revisions for about $25.00
Another interesting way you can get multiple people working on your project and giving you ideas is located at https://www.99Designs.com
At this site, you submit your project and what you are willing to pay and designers from around the world will show you their concept in hopes that you give them the actual job. The more money you are willing to pay, the more people who will submit their vision of your project. Pretty cool idea.
You can also submit your project to https://www.Upwork.com formerly elance.com where people will bid on your job. For graphics I like fiverr first and 99designs second. Upwork doesn’t seem to have a high percentage of graphics people.
Here’s some tools for your do-it-yourselfers out there. There are free logo generators like https://www.tailorbrands.com/ where you can type in some details of what you want and click on some fonts you like and a minute or so later you have a logo. For flyers you have places like https://www.PosterMyWall.com They have lots of different samples.
We really like Canva and have been using it for 4 years. https://www.Canva.com My social media person gave me some likes and dislikes on this free program.
What she likes:
• You can find affordable graphics for all kinds of business graphics. They also have a wide variety of free images you can search by keyword.
• It's very easy to drag and drop images and text onto your canvas
• If you've already created a graphic, it's easy to duplicate the same one and then edit it
• There's a ton of templates you can use and pre-defined social media sizes (YouTube thumbnail, Kindle e-book, etc.)
• You can save all of your brand colors and add fonts
We really love the program and it’s free.
What she doesn’t like:
• The program will stall at times when you're creating and you can't access your content, so you have to refresh the page. You don't lose anything, but you have to copy the content before you refresh and then paste it into the canvas.
• It's not very easy to search for content you've created in the past.
Photo Manipulation
For years we used FotoFlexer.com but it seems to have disappeared of the face of the earth so now we use https://www.Ipiccy.com You can do all kinds of things to fotos here and all for free. You can change the size, crop, put text on, blur and a ton of other things. This is an extremely handy online tool.
Of course, you can use things like photoshop, but it’s extremely complicated to learn and most things don’t need that level of sophistication. And Photoshop is not cheap.
A lot of people are using Facebook and Instagram stories. They have become very popular and they need a certain size image to look good. Enter Buffer Story Creator https://buffer.com/stories-creator and it makes it super easy for you to format photos and graphics to put on your Facebook and Instagram story accounts.
iPhone Apps
Here are some iPhone apps we like and most have an Android counterpart
Photo Collage has a whole bunch of layouts where you can plug in pics from your camera roll and Photo Collage combines a bunch of your photos into one. They have a ton of different layouts.
Photo Mirror also does collages and duplicates and mirrors images to create some really neat effects.
Photo Wonder again does collages and has a bunch of fun filters and overlays
Afterlight has advanced filters and textures and frames you can put around your pics
Camera 360 specializes in selfies and fun stickers.
There are tons of photo and graphic apps so just check them out and have some fun with them.
You must be extremely careful to make sure you have the rights to use your graphics. You can’t just steal stuff off the web and use it in your commercial ventures. There are companies where their entire business model is to sue people like you for copyright infringement. I know of a couple cases that students brought to me before they were students and then when they became students I had to hear about this and cry. One person used one photograph on one blog posting on a not even popular blog and got sued for something like $6500 in a federal copyright infringement lawsuit and settled out of court for like $4700.00. Another student came to me and had paid a web designer thousands to build their website and they got a copyright infringement suit for the graphics for $4300.00 and ended up paying it….of course the web designer was nowhere to be found and the website owner was liable.
One thing you can’t totally trust is Google images. You can search for all kinds of images and you can even filter out the copyrighted ones using the “usage rights” filter on the images menu system. The problem is that you can’t depend that everything is perfect and that the image you want to use is copyright free so you still could get sued for using it.
So, what do you do? I have yearly subscription to https://www.Clipart.com it has millions of photos and clipart that I can use in my projects.
There are too many places to list that provide this kind of service and they do come and go. Istockphoto is one of the big ones that’s been around for a long time, but it’s a little pricey. A new kid on the block is https://www.pexels.com/royalty-free-images/ but you can just Google “royalty free images” to find tons of places but make sure you carefully read their terms of services to make sure you don’t get in trouble.
What I want to give you my opinion about is that I think you should be careful using stock photos that have the obligatory Black, Asian, and female photos you see on many corporate sites. People are sick of these fake attempts to show diversity. I’d rather see you take real pictures of your employees and you helping real customers and put them on your website and blog. Make sure your employee agreement allows you to use their photos on work related things and that you get permission from your customers to use their photos.
It’s easier than ever to make your website graphics look great by using Themes. And in today’s atmosphere you must use a “responsive theme” which means it automatically adjusts to look good on cellphones and tablets. You will still have to order some graphics unique to your business to customize the theme, but you can easily achieve a world-class look for about $100.00 for a paid theme but I suggest and I’m an affiliate for Thrive themes where for about 20 bucks a month you have a whole bunch of themes to pick from and a sophisticated, but easy to use, webpage designer program so you can do everything yourself and you’ll be sure it looks great. This is a real bargain and my affiliate link will be in the show notes. I have tons of my students using this and people that never dreamed in a million years they could make a world-class looking website. And they’re doing it for about 20 bucks a month and updating everything and saving tons on website maintenance.
Where to start?
I would definitely get a free https://www.Ipiccy.com and https://www.Canva.com account and take the time to learn to use them or turn them over to an assistant to use. These are the two I use the most.
If you do a lot of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest postings I get a paid account at https://www.Clipart.com and for website stuff get the Thrive Themes package. Then you can explore the other places I talked about.
Go out and knock ‘em alive with your fantastic look both online and off.
In the meantime the Screw the Commute private Facebook group where you can interact with me, my staff and with other great entrepreneurs and like-minded people and it's a place where my staff and I put in training and business tips several times per week. And you can ask question and get feedback on things you are doing. I give you quick tips that have made and saved me tons of money over more than 40 years in business and myself and my staff also give you more in-depth postings on all kinds of business topics. Check it out in the show notes at screwthecommute.com let's get back to today's great guest.
Next Episode 092 Robert Siciliano. This guy hates fraud and loves personal security. He’s a man I admire because of his consumer protection work.

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