Yesterday 12 huge packages arrived- the first shipment of my canon 40 d tutorial training dvds, well over 1000 of them. This was pretty exciting for me. Packaged, Bar Coded, the whole shebang, even the disk itself was silk screened. I was pretty proud of it. I know you are probably asking yourself, how in the world has Michael Andrew been selling these things for the last few weeks if he didnt have them? Well…thats a good question- the short answer is, Ive been making DVDs (although they are wedding videos) for about 5 years now and I have gotten pretty good at it, including the boxes and everything, so I had made a short run of about 75 from my own production studio. The problem with these shorter runs, is they are not so cost effective. The disks I received yesterday were professionally made, complete with glass mastered disks, guaranteed to play on any DVD normal player, and they cost about half as much to produce as in-studio disks. The only problem with this route is you have to order at least 1000 of them.

Now, comes the hard part, the marketing. I know there are tons of photographers out there with Canon 40D’s, who have spent all this money on them and arent sure how to use them. I got an email today from a student who said he has been shooting with the Canon D series cameras, like the 10D, 20D, 30D, etc and said he didnt like the camera because the pictures didnt look professional and wanted something that could take a professional picture like the ones he saw on my website. Well…all the photographs on my website were taken with these cameras. A skilled photographer will be able to use just about any camera to get a nice portrait because he/she knows the rules of the game. So, students will spend $1500 on these cameras, and then give up after a few weeks, when a small investment would make all the difference, and I will tell you now, the guide that comes with the camera is not enough.

Now to answer another question I am sure you have by now. Why does Michael Andrew keep on talking about this DVD?!? LOL 🙂 Well about a week ago I wrote a review on the video with a very specific purpose, and that was for the search engines to pick it up. I am trying to learn everything I can about helping search engines find websites. This is the missing link, I have a good product, there are photographers out there who want it, how can I help photographers find my Canon 40D DVD? Especially because its such an amazingly fantastic DVD. Its like a turtle without a shell if you have a 40 D and no Michael Andrew Crash Course training…ya know?

I had one student, who I really appreciate Sandy, email me a few weeks ago and point me in the right direction. She can be very blunt, but I listened to her and she has been so right. I needed a crash course on Search Engine Optimization. So I have been studying this topic like crazy the last week or so. In the process, I also learned that my blog, particularly those articles on the front page, rank extremely high on google (this is due to the fact that I update it regularly and have so many wonderful friends that visit so often….THANK YOU!!)

Test it out and do this search on google:

Allison’s Bridal Shoot

Granted its not a super competitive keyword search, but in the amount of time (2 days) the number of brides out there named Allison, I believe this is pretty impressive. (Its ranked number one as of this writing). That article I wrote on my Canon 40 D DVD, as of now, its like #7. So….that’s what I was up to when I wrote that article.

Let me just tell you a little bit about the project- It took a good 4 months to script, write, edit, re-shoot, re-edit, going over and over and over to get it just right. This is something I am planning on going into retail stores, so it had to be as perfect as possible. It was a very difficult project, but I can say I learned soooooo much about it. When I finished, I wasnt sure if it was worth it. Now, however, it absolutely was worth it. I get emails all the time from students who have watched my canon 40d dvd and they really have appreciated it.

I know now that from what I have learned I could probably re-make it in about 2-3 weeks. I have 3 new DVD projects in the works, Photoshop Crash Course, Canon Rebel SXi Crash Course (to be released in May) and a Videography Crash Course.

If you are a photographer looking to purchase the DVD, I usually send them out the next day and you can order them here:
Canon 40D DVD Training Guide by Michael Andrew

Now I am trying to figure out how to market these on the internet, so I am learning all about SEO. I had a company from UTAH do the SEO work of my photography site, but I wanted to try on my own for this project and its been a wonderful learning experience. Ive even gone through the trouble of purchasing the domain name and tonight as I was reading one of my SEO books, I learned about all these mistakes I was making. Mistakes can be good, because if they are painful enough, you wont repeat them.

Ok, maybe I am rambling here, but the lesson I have learned from these experiences is that there is so much to gain from being a little brave, sucking it up and just trying to do something even if you arent really sure how to go about it. If you commit to just sticking it out, eventually you will have success (just….probably not when you want it).