Consuming Content from your Faves

When I was just starting out, I followed a photographer who was also just starting out. She, however, was a lot more brave and a lot more confident than I was and because of it, she became very popular very quickly. For years, I consumed literally everything she put out into the internet world. I read every blog post, watched every interview, followed her on social media. I was front row.

One of the things she said very early on was regarding SEO. She said that people needed to be finding me on Google. So I got to work. I focused on SEO really hard and then for two years held on to this belief that I wasn’t seeing growth in my business because I wasn’t on the first page of Google.

Two years later, I went to a seminar of hers where she said that SEO wasn’t that important.

Blink.

Blink Blink.

Part of me wanted to stand up and say “HEY SO I REMEMBER THIS ONE TIME YOU SAID IT WAS REALLY IMPORTANT SO……..” Like what the heck? Do online educators even know what they’re teaching and why? Is it all just a mess of opinions that fit whatever they think in the moment?

And the answer is: YES. IT IS.

I went through several thoughts very quickly in that moment and in the end, I actually felt like I was let off a huge hook. Because I no longer felt the need to heed every word out of this persons mouth. Not that I’d never listen to her again, just that it was okay for my path to look different from hers. It was okay for me to answer my own questions and use my own creativity to guide my way. That’s much more empowering than thinking you need to rely on everyone else for the answers in your life.

When I was dating, years ago, I found that I pretty much hated dating. I was terrible at it and would have rather been in bed watching Netflix. And my dating advice to anyone who asked was always, “I’m pretty burned out. I’d skip the whole thing, everyone online sucks anyway.” But then I met Raffi. And now, my dating advice is, “Just wade through it! You’ll meet so many wrong people but then you’ll meet someone who exceeds all of your hopes, I promise!!!!”

The point? People give advice based on where they’re at in their own lives.

Someone who books all their weddings from Facebook ads will tell you Facebook ads is where it’s at. Someone who books all their weddings from hashtagging on Instagram will swear by hash-tagging on Instagram. And someone who ran a Facebook ad that didn’t land will tell you Facebook ads are a waste of time.

So the question isn’t, “Are Facebook ads effective?” The question is “Will Facebook ads be effective for my business?” and the only one who can really answer that is you.

Luckily, you are clever, resourceful and self reliant. Plus you have the biggest information database in the world at your fingertips. Go team!

So take it with a grain of salt. Or as my therapist says, “Take the best and leave the rest.” You don’t have to listen to everything because everything won’t work for you. This goes for me too! I have a lot of content on my site, most of it for photographers, and I know there are some things I said two years ago that I’ve changed my views on since then. Maybe they’re still true for you… maybe they speak to your life and inspire you to make changes that are beneficial for you now. Or maybe there are things that are true for me now that aren’t for you.

Remember, everyone who ever created anything is a human being just like you and me. There are just as many flaws out there as there are virtues.

Consume content that inspires you and lifts you up, yes, but take the best and leave the rest.

Denise Karis is an Arizona photographer who enjoys musicals, Doctor Who and breakfast burritos. IG @denisekaris

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