When we met these beautiful young sisters three years ago we were taken with them immediately! They were comfortable in front of the camera from the very beginning and that hasn’t changed at all. Younger sis was one of our very first “flower pot” babies when she was 6 months old! She’s 3 1/2 now with personality to burn and her older sister who was 6 then is quite the 9 year old young lady now!
They were very well prepared and coordinated for this shoot and we had a great time with them. It makes for a very special photo shoot when you can reconnect with the kids you knew from so little and watch them grow up right in front of your camera! Enjoy!
And so the campus tour rolled along… this time into Ann Arbor to see a couple of our favorite Frameable Wolverines! The cold front was just moving in and the weather was bitter cold but we didn’t let that stop the fun……or the FOOD! Shocking we know…. 🙂
The Frameable Faces Campus Tour checks in at Pizza House!
Nicole and Cheyenne met us at Pizza House – one of the most popular spots on campus and home of the best chipatis you’ll find anywhere. A chipati is a yummy salad wrapped in yummy and warm chipati bread served with chipati sauce. The pizza and garlic bread rocks as well – actually pretty much everything is good at Pizza House… It was a historic MLK day with this year marking the 50th anniversary of the “I Have A Dream” speech and it was also inauguration day. The girls didn’t have classes and we were able to relax and catch up for a couple hours in the late afternoon for an early dinner.
Chicago style deep dish pizza and a chipati! Mmmmm....
Ally and a couple of her favorite Frameable Wolverines!
Doug with Nicole and Cheyenne
In keeping with the theme established in East Lansing, we took a stroll over to Insomnia Cookies for dessert… and we can only say that it’s a good thing there isn’t one of these in West Bloomfield. It’s dangerous enough with a Just Baked right across the street from the studio (YUM), but late night cookie delivery could be a big problem. 🙂
Yet again at Insomnia Cookies.... So goood...
Another fun trip with two of our Frameables who are also responsible for two of our greatest images ever – Nicole standing in the water with the beautiful orange sunset many of you have seen and the stunning image of Cheyenne printed on the big beautiful plexiglass which still hangs in the studio. We love our Frameable Seniors and we love to share in their successes as they enjoy their college experience!
We have been saying for a long time that it would be fun to visit our seniors when they go away to college, so this year we launched the first annual Frameable Faces Campus Tour! We started out with a trip to East Lansing to visit our Frameable Spartans, and we had a great time!
Frameables at "El Az"!
As usual this get together centered around food. We arrived on campus and picked up Lainie, Jessica, and Chelsea at their apartments/dorms and headed over to El Azteco which is a Mexican dining favorite at Michigan State for the famous Topopo Salad. We had lots of laughs and it was great to catch up! If you enjoy a good salad and you haven’t had one of these you are missing out….
Two Topopos! Yum!
Ally with some of her favorite Frameable Spartans!
Doug with Jessica, Chelsea and Lainie
We then walked a few blocks over to Insomnia Cookies – one of the best concepts ever. Cookies served warm and even delivered until 2:45 AM – wish we would have had this when we were in college….
The Insomnia Cookies didn't last long...
Each one of these girls were responsible for some our best “iconic” shots of all time – Lainie actually IN the water with a dress on, Jessica in the snow in a white dress, and Chelsea on the pink background on a huge canvas that hung in our studio for a long time. Three of our all time favorites! All in all it was a great night and we hope to do this every year! Next stop, Ann Arbor….!
This is really a follow up post to “Restoring History” which focused on photo restoration. Here is a little social media strategy discussion – as of this writing the strategy for the “Restoring History” post is in a test mode as we speak, and hopefully we can get some results we can learn from as we go along….
The Option To Promote A Facebook Post
For those who may not know, Facebook rolled out a new tool a few months ago where you can pay to promote your status updates so that they will reach more users. They also changed their algorithms so that posts don’t automatically reach as many folks as they used to without paying. If you post something that people love, comment and share then you can still get good results but it’s not a gimme like it was before. Many people became very upset about this when they saw their reach suddenly dwindle unannounced. I’ve written in the past about staying the course and not freaking out about it – in a way it’s a good thing because now boring lame content doesn’t get the free ride it used to get and good content that is useful and interesting still gets rewarded. Meanwhile if you want to give your content a boost you can pay to have it promoted.
Identifying A Guru For Some Guidance
Jay Baer is a social media strategist and author whom I follow and he posted a great article with the criteria he uses for determining How To Know When To Promote A Facebook Post back on 10/27/12. If you manage a facebook business page it’s worth reading and bookmarking. In short he discusses a 4 part “STIR” criteria that includes a waiting period to figure out first if your post is engagement worthy on its own, and the suggestion to promote a post that has a link to click on or some call to action.
Other Factors To Consider
Before yesterday we only promoted twice. Each time we did the minimum level and we only promoted to people who already like our page. There is also the option of promoting to people who like your page and their friends. Depending on your product, your overall Facebook strategy, and the post you are promoting there are a few factors to consider in addition to “STIR” when promoting:
- Organic vs. paid approach. We’ve been fiercely committed to earning Facebook likes one at a time without gimmicks to inflate our numbers. We want our content to be entertaining and useful. Being “salesy” is spammy and boring. We want people to like our page because it’s likeable – not because we beg for it or flood their news feeds (they’ll shut us off if we do that anyway). Too many promoted posts can threaten that aesthetic which is why we had only done it twice before.
- First impression if you go outside your likes. If you promote a post to your likes and their friends keep in mind that this post may be for many their first exposure to your brand. Is this post focused on a topic that is more tightly focused on current clients? Make sure the post serves as a good first impression and consider whether it has broad appeal.
- Geography and goal of the post. Make sure you are going to get the proper bang for your buck. If you are a local business that can only serve local clients then you may want to be careful about promoting to your likes and their friends. You may spend money reaching too many folks who are out of state and may never be your client. Then again word of mouth can travel out of state and then back into your neighborhood from afar so it’s not that black and white, but just be sure to consider what are you trying to accomplish with the additional exposure you are paying for.
The Case Study
So we’ll let you in on the strategy we used yesterday when we promoted the post “Restoring History”. We did the maximum amount with the option of promoting to our likes and their friends for a three day period. First off the post met all 4 of Jay Baer’s STIR criteria before we promoted it. We also considered the 3 additional factors outlined above:
- Even though it’s a promoted post which by definition isn’t exactly an organic approach, we feel it is interesting and useful content which keeps with the spirit of how we attract folks to our page. I’m not promoting a BIG SALE! or running a cheesy contest to just gain empty likes. If people follow us as a result they’ll likely do it because they appreciate the content – it will expose them to our blog and maybe they’ll see there is real value here. Like we mentioned before, we do NOT promote often and that won’t change.
- Even though photo restoration is NOT our core business by any means, I don’t mind this post creating a first impression of our studio to people who don’t know us. It’s a thoughtful post that will show we have something worthwhile to say and we think it has broad appeal. Not a bad way to discover Frameable Faces.
- This is one service and maybe the ONLY service that we offer that we can offer to people out of state without them ever visiting our studio. While I don’t anticipate a ton of out of state photo restoration business, in theory as long as someone can scan the damaged photo and send it to us we can do the rest – have it restored, print it, ship it. Therefore if going outside of our likes takes us out of our local geography here and there in the process that’s okay.
We will post an update to share the results good and bad. Let us know if you’ve had experiences with promoted posts and if you have anything to add!
Sometimes photo restoration can be just as rewarding as creating a new photo. Mike is a client who brought in an incredible photo that was damaged, creased and tattered to see if we could fix it. You can see the results below and after learning that this was what Mike called home while serving our country in Vietnam we can only imagine what this photo means to him. Actually I’m sure that most of us cannot imagine it, but you can feel that you are looking at an important piece of history – personal and national – when you see it. To be able to restore this image to such a pristine state is a very rewarding thing and Mike was gracious enough to allow us to share it on our blog. The next time you get annoyed about your living conditions – you wish your kitchen was a little bigger or you can’t stand the draft along the floor in your bedroom, think about what the soldier deals with while he/she is out there defending our country.
We asked Mike a couple of questions about the photo and here is what he had to say:
Frameable Faces: So Mike, tell us what is in this photo?
Mike: This is a picture of what I called home for some time when I was serving in Vietnam. I prefer not to talk too much about my time over there, but the photo definitely means a lot to me.
Frameable Faces: Can you tell us more about the photo? Did you take the photo yourself and did you have it developed once you returned home?
Mike: I took the photo myself with a throwaway camera. I wasn’t going to take an expensive camera over there and my mom actually sent over a disposable camera for me to use. I had to just keep the camera on me since there was obviously nowhere to get it developed where I was. I brought it back to the U.S. when I returned in 1967 and that’s when I got it developed.
Frameable Faces: Well we are glad we were able to restore it for you and we hope you are happy with the way it turned out. Thank you so much for sharing and for your service!
Mike: You are welcome and I couldn’t be happier – this photo deserved to be restored and I’m putting it in a frame so I can display it properly. You guys did a perfect job on this!
Frameable Faces Photography
Frameable Faces Photography is a small biz retail mom & pop shop of Doug&Ally Cohen located in the Orchard Mall in West Bloomfield, Michigan, United States Of America!
Ally & Doug can be reached at the studio at tel:248-790-7317 or emailed at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Being “Frameable” is an attitude, a community, a way of life – a life you would want to celebrate and display on your walls for all to see! Tell us… ARE YOU FRAMEABLE?
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Yesterday we posted some peaks from a family session we did on Christmas day and we mentioned that it was one of two families we photographed that day, and to stay tuned for the other one…. Well here is the other one – this is “part two” of What A Fun Way To Spend A Holiday!
We couldn’t have asked for better back to back families that day. We have a couple of connections to this family and this was the first time we had all four of them in the studio together for a photo session. Lots of good music being jammed and discussed, and a lot of just general catching up being done. Great people, great photos! We even took a photo of these two extremely sophisticated gentlemen worthy of the cover of Cigar Aficianado! 😉
This was a fantastic session and it took place on Christmas day! The funny thing is when we tell people that we were shooting on Christmas day their first reaction is confusion – “Really?”… “On Christmas?” But think about it – everyone is together, everyone is happy (right?) and what better way to celebrate family on an important day than to take pictures together?
This was actually one of two awesome families we photographed that day (stay tuned for the other one) and a memorable day it was! We had a lot of laughs with this group – they were a very lively gang (there was laughing, wisecracking and yes – even some singing), not to mention a great looking group! Stylish, athletic, glamorous – all represented in this crew! Enjoy!
Welcome to our second edition of Frameable Flashbacks! This is where we celebrate and check in with our former high school seniors to see what they are up to – sort of our version of “where are they now?” The first one we did with Hannah Iwrey was a lot of fun, and now we check in with West Bloomfield High School Class of 2011 graduate Chelsea Cage!
One of Chelsea's senior pictures
Chelsea brought us her older brother Chad for his senior pics when she was a junior and we recruited her to be a spokesmodel. She has been a huge part of our studio and of our lives over the past few years. She literally helped lay the foundation here and rarely do you get a chance to meet someone as beautiful inside and out as Chelsea – she is the genuine article and she is like family to us! We love when she comes back to visit and this time we snapped a couple of quick shots including one of her holding her canvas that used to hang on the wall of the studio.
Here’s what she had to say:
Frameable Faces: So what are you up to?
Chelsea: I’m currently studying at Michigan State University, and I love being a Spartan!!! I’m a teaching assistant, and I’m the publicity chair of the National Association of Black Accountants (MSU Chapter).
Frameable Faces: What are your future plans with your studies (what do you want to be when you grow up)?
Chelsea: I want to go into business; either accounting or supply chain management. I want to work for a Fortune 500 company.
Chelsea and Doug catch up!
Frameable Faces: What do you remember most about your Frameable Faces experience?
Chelsea: What I love most about my Frameable Faces is the relationship I built with Doug and Ally :-). It’s nice to know that I’m always welcome to stop by the studio and hang out! And having my picture in the window for a year was pretty cool!
Another beautiful shot from Chelsea's senior session!