An Offer to Lauren Harris Photography

Dear Lauren,

First, my sincerest apologies if you were personally grieved by this whole blog thing. That was not my intention. I actually think the people who were trying to help you just brought more attention to the topic than it warranted. Thanks for your reply to my original post. I want to quickly address a few points. Then at the end of this post, I have a proposal for you.

First, I understand that you just pasted the same reply you put on Scarlett’s blog. Most of your reply was in regard to your blog looking like Scarlett’s. MY commentary was just about your video. I didn’t say anything about your blog. I just want to make it clear that I was not making any allegations about your blog.

Second, and more to my original point, you stated that you had made your video about a year ago, but then after seeing Scarlett’s you decided to change yours to have the same song, and very similar  editiing. That is actually the very problem I was pointing out in my original article.

As a video producer I try to keep my pulse on the industry. One thing I’ve been noticing is a sort of “templatization” of video work. Essentially, I’m seeing the same thing in promo videos that I’ve seen in websites. It goes somethinge like this:

  • Cool, high profile photographer A gets a very cool promo.
  • Photographer B sees cool promo for photog A
  • Photog B gets a promo that looks exactly like photog A’s promo (or very, very similar, i.e. editing, effects, dialog, etc.)

The branding and personalities of photogs A and B are totally different, but you wouldn’t tell that from the videos—the one thing more than anything that should illustrate their uniqueness just contributes to the homogenization. As I mentioned in my WPPI presentation, it’s almost as if photographers are just trying to impress other photographers, rather than create a video that will really speak to their clientele and communicate the brand.

Your promo is an extreme case of that. From what people have commented about you (and from what you said yourself), you’re a quiet person who keeps to herself and isn’t looking to be the next “rock star” photog. (BTW, can we come up with a different term than “rock star” people? It’s getting old). Anyway, Scarlett’s brand is loud. Both visually and audibly. If you’re not, why duplicate her video?

AN OFFER YOU CAN’T REFUSE

So, I want to make you an offer you can’t refuse (well, technically, you CAN.🙂 ) This whole topic is one near and dear to me (obviously). I teach and advise videographers all over the country on the most effective ways to produce a promo video. How would you like to be our next subject? If you cover my travel and lodging costs, I will come out to AR and produce you a brand new promo video. One that will be truly effective in communicating YOUR brand. In the process we’ll also do a “behind the scenes” making of it.  We’ll then post it on this blog, Facebook, Twitter, and you of course can put it wherever you like. This is about a $5000 value I’m offering.  I guarantee you, any possible negative PR you got from my little article will do a complete 180. Plus you’ll have a great promo that reflects you.

You probably think I’m a terrible, mean-spirited person (I’m not) so no hard feelings if you decline. But think about it. You can see samples of the work we’ve produced at csiprophoto.com. Call or email me if you want to discuss.

In the meantime, embrace the real YOU. You’ve only been in business a few years, so you’re really still in that discovery phase of who you are and what your brand is alll about. There’s nothing wrong with that. Use this time to discover a completely YOU-nique Lauren. Then amaze us all!

20 thoughts on “An Offer to Lauren Harris Photography

  1. Ron you are a nice guy and one who is certainly sincere. You handled this much better than I would of. I am proud to know you and suggest that photographers who need a promo video look to you BEFORE they get into this kind of trouble. Just sorry you moved so far away🙂

  2. Hey Ron, feel free to talk ‘bad’ about me and give me an offer like this in the future as well!😉 I think it’s a great gesture on your behalf for a situation that probably went farther than it should have, and I’m looking forward to see what your crew comes up with for her. Keep up the great work!

  3. If she doesn’t take the offer then I’d really question her dedication to her clients and her business. But hopefully she will see the true importance in this and disregard any hurt feelings! Please keep us posted on what happens!

  4. Hey folks, stay tuned for a very cool, and POSITIVE announcement tomorrow. It will re-store hope and inspiration in an industry beset with a lot of drama lately.🙂

  5. Lauren called me earlier and told me that you called her and she had nothing but good things to say about you. I just want to say I really respect you taking a pretty dismal situation and turning it into something very positive. I’ll be at Lauren’s studio launch party so I look forward to meeting you!

  6. Can’t wait to hear the announcement! In thinking about this whole thing, I am thinking “growth is painful”. Even positive growth.

    I think we have all learned something from this in our own way, and those of us conscientious enough to not just write this off as “Ron’s an a-hole” or “Lauren is a copycat”, all stand to benefit from this experience and become stronger and better photographers.

    Sometimes the icky stuff has to be put out there so we can make progress and grow.

  7. “Sometimes the icky stuff has to be put out there so we can make progress and grow.”

    @Jamie – Well said!

    Ron, you are the man! Win-Win all the way around.

  8. Maybe you could do the added benefit after some time has passed of deleting these posts so that if she has potential clients “google” her name she is not associated with all with all this nonsense.

  9. I just caught on to all of this and I am impressed Ron with your willingness to step in and help her turn things around. Truly someone who is trying to lead all of us in the right direction. I am very much a newbie so all of this helps me immensely in trying to see what is unique about me and my branding. I am still in the dark and tying to find my way, but the call out to be more unique is a light at the end of the tunnel.

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