I love history. It’s funny how it truly does repeat itself…
In our lobby at the Motion Media Solutions office, we have a book which documents the history of portrait photography. Photo portraits only became widespread in the 19th century after the invention of the daguerreotype method, a quick, portable, and cost-effective way to produce keepsake-pictures that took photography out of the inventor’s studio and into the marketplace.
In the 1840s, daguerreotype photography surged in popularity as people marveled at the stunning likenesses that could be produced quickly and at a much lower cost than a painted portrait.
The daguerreotype was eventually replaced by other methods, but portrait photography retained its popularity. In addition to being a status symbol, photo portraits were invaluable to families, since they provided an exact picture of their loved ones. The American Civil War expanded this need to capture loved ones on camera, as many families knew they might not see their children after they were sent to war.
To meet this growing demand, daguerreotype photographers made their business by setting up temporary portrait studios in central locations like saloons and local inns. In fact, many photographers from the 1860s were classified as ‘innkeepers’ or as a ‘photographer and beer retailer’.
There are quite a few parallels between the growth of the photography market in the Victorian era and today’s expanding market for online video production. Today, business professionals are looking for an online video production to complement their branding, just like 19th century families wanted portraits to establish a lasting memory of themselves and loved ones. There seemed to be a greater value in pictures that were not as flattering as painted portraits, but rather sincere impressions of who they really were.
Business professionals today realize the best way to connect to customers and prospects by providing a video profile that is accurate, sincere, and – most importantly – not overly scripted.
Victorian-era photographers served families in precisely the same way that Motion Media Solutions serves its clients today; we help you present yourself, encouraging even the most reticent who would see being on-camera as the last thing they would choose to do; this is because there is no better presentation than yours discussing what they can expect working with you. Putting video on the Internet has become a necessary step up the ladder of visibility, similar to the way portrait photography was a status symbol in the 19th century. The photos themselves weren’t the only valuable part of a Victorian photography package, though.
The frames and casings for those photos were considered to be as valuable as the pictures themselves, drawing the eye in from a distance. At Motion Media Solutions, we do similar ‘framing’ with the way we combine stunning designs and graphics which complement your brand. Then, by launching a Video proFile Page for each video, we make it simple to add to any website, and distribute and promote the videos as part of a unique SEO video strategy. Because what’s the point of a picture if nobody can see it? Syndication and distribution of videos isn’t a grand secret, though… honestly, anybody can take these strategic steps themselves… in fact, in future posts, we’ll share each of our zoomIn Process. It’s important to note that all those Victorian picture-frames were mass-manufactured. The hard part is making a sincere and accurate portrait. At Motion Media Solutions we use our zoomIn Process to provide that level of sincerity that is so important to making a personal connection with your potential clients.
Another striking similarity shows between the practices of early photographers and Motion Media Solutions’ Video proFile service. Just like the ‘photographers and beer retailers’ of old, we set up our Video proFile zoomIn process in local hotel conference centers, and help business professionals through our simple, yet effective personalized video profile to hang on their website and automatically load it to the top video sharing sites.
We can imagine that 19th century photographers probably had similar advice for their clients: show up, relax, be sincere, and… present yourself.