As a tech company, we are constantly changing and adapting to the needs and pressures of the marketplace. But as our platform continues to evolve and deliver content more beautifully and efficiently, we also find ourselves hearkening back to the fundamentals, trusting a few basic lessons about people and stories that we learned from running a successful publishing company and art gallery.

#1. People like quality.

Digital has done much to level the field of photography, both on the production and consumption fronts. Where once only professional photographers could afford to take great photos, now almost everyone carries a camera of at least moderate quality in her pocket. And because photos and multimedia are shared so regularly across so many channels (we upload approximately 1.8 billion photos every day), the average Joe sifts through tons of content daily. The stuff that catches his eye is unique, timely, well conceived and well composed. The average Joe is discerning, so give him something with high production value; he is bored with content, so give him something that will delight, surprise, or outrage him.

We wouldn’t hang a boring, no-talent show in our gallery and expect visitors, and you shouldn’t post boring, no-talent content and expect results.

#2. Fans want to share what’s dear to them.

Fans are tireless cheerleaders for the things that are near and dear to them. Not only will they get behind a project and support it financially, but they will proactively spread the message, as well.

They are ready to use their megaphones, so give them something to shout about. Share high-quality images, bite-sized facts and updates, and other content that’s easy for them to post or share.

#3. Real relationships matter.

Sure, we have mailings lists, and we post information regularly on our social media channels, but we also like to get to know our supporters. We listen a lot, whether it’s around a bonfire in back of the studio or in online conversations. We want to make sure that we have the pulse of the people who consume our content, and if we’re not inspiring our audience, we like to know so that we can adjust, and re-engage—because, as artists and entrepreneurs, inspiration is at the heart of what we’re building.

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