Interesting post, suggesting that smiling isn’t conducive to creating a good portrait.

Of course, in the olden days of painting (and the early days of photography) you had to remain still for quite some time. Smiling is something best done quickly, not over long periods of time. Even trying to smile for more than a few minute isn’t enjoyable. (I don’t know how some people in the service industry do it!)

Personally, I’m not a huge fan of smiling for photos. I know that everyone wants a smile when there’s a snapshot being taken, and I have to assume it’s because people associate smiling with being happy… But I think you can make a great photo (and/or portrait) without a smile.

November 29, 2011 · Posted by in misc, photo  

An iPad in every…

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iPad Ship

We tend to deal more with hotels than cruise ships, and we’ve had more than one discussion about iPads in every guest room, but here’s a ship that will have iPads in every stateroom.

Royal Caribbean’s 2,074-passenger Splendour of the Seas is currently in dry dock being refurbished, and one of the new additions to the ship will be an iPad for every stateroom. The idea is to give guests a new way to get information. The daily Cruise Compass newsletter will be accessible from the iPad, providing a list of events and activities, personal daily itineraries, and shore excursions. Guests can also watch movies or surf the Internet. Want to look at a restaurant menu or check your ever-growing bar tab? There’s an iPad for that.

I’m a fan of the iPad and if they do it right, I can see it being a great interface to all of the information you may need on a cruise.

(Disclaimer: I’ve never been on a cruise, though I do own a canoe. And no, I’ve never taken the iPad with me on any canoe trips.)

November 28, 2011 · Posted by in misc  

Lost in Translation

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I was lucky enough to spend all of last week on vacation in beautiful Puerto Rico… and it was amazing. Although Puerto Rico is a territory of the United States, the primary language spoken/written there is Spanish. Due to the number of tourists, however, there also is a lot of “Spanglish” used, which is always entertaining.

While there I noticed a few examples of advertising that didn’t quite hit the mark. The photo below is of a Burger King billboard. Although it has the correct BK logo in the lower, left-hand corner, the main copy on the sign reads, “Burger Ring.” There were dozens of these signs lining the highway.

The first example could have just been a proofing error, but this next one was definitely intentional. Walking around Old San Juan we came across a jewelry store whose sign boasted “Pre-Owned Stale Jewelry.” Not quite sure what they were trying to portray through that choice of words.

Here are a couple more shots from my trip, just for fun.

Fort in Old San Juan.

Snorkeling stop.

View from the rainforest.

November 25, 2011 · Posted by in marketing  

The Amazon Gorilla

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Remember the old days, when Amazon sold books? Well, you may not, depending on your age and/or how long you’ve been using the web. Amazon.com launched in 1994.

Amazon has become known as “the world’s largest online retailer” thanks to expanding from their book-selling days into the “sell almost anything” days. While typical consumers might know they sell goods online (including their own tablets) plenty of techies know they also sell server space, computers in the cloud, and plenty of other business oriented services and systems.

To say Amazon has branched out over the years would be an understatement.

Going back to the early years, this recent article titled 6 Things Jeff Bezos Knew Back in 1997 That Made Amazon a Gorilla gives some insight into how they got where they are.

Here’s the list:

  1. When you have a window of opportunity, go for the jugular – even if you have to exhaust a huge number of resources.
  2. Think long-term meaning 5 – 7 years, not 5 – 7 months.
  3. Long-term market share is more important than short-term profits because without long-term market share there will be no long-term profits.
  4. It’s ok to make mistakes but it’s not ok to be timid.
  5. Obsess over Customers.
  6. Be first in a big market.

See the full interview with Bezos for more.

November 21, 2011 · Posted by in marketing  

Happy Friday everyone! I just wanted to share an interesting infographic about social media in small businesses and the potential for business growth.

The State of Social Media in Small Business

November 18, 2011 · Posted by in branding, social media  

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