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3 Facts about Atlanta’s Music Scene You Probably Did Not Know

April 14, 2015 - By 

Nowadays, everyone in Atlanta claims to have some type of music talent.

Whether it’s beat boxing, rapping, gospel singer, or something in between, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of Atlanta residents who are living their life as a musician.

Not to mention the people who flock to Atlanta from across the US with hopes of having their talent discovered.

If one of those people are you and you are living in or planning to relocate to Atlanta to get your music career off the ground, you’ll want to keep in mind these next three things I’m about to tell you about Atlanta’s music scene.

Getting to Know Atlanta’s Music Lifestyle

Though it’s not mandatory you know these 3 things before getting involved with the music scene in Atlanta, it doesn’t hurt to be a little knowledgeable about the environments and people you’re getting involved with.

So, here you go.

1.) Music is intrinsically connected to the heart and culture of Atlanta

Trust me when I say that literally everything about Atlanta culture has some part of its music scene associated with it.

It doesn’t matter if we’re talking about business, events or anything else, it is highly likely that there is a component of it that is associated with Atlanta’s music lifestyle.

DJ spinning records

2.) It is comprised of arts and culture in addition to music

There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to music in Atlanta.

In fact, there is more variety than we often know what to do with.

One beautiful thing about the music scene, though, is that it is not just made up of music.

The Atlanta way of life is also rich in culture and arts in a way that ensures that every individual taste is satisfied.

3.) It is mainly support-based, not competition-based

As an artist, especially in a big city like Atlanta, it is only natural that you go into your craft with the mindset of becoming one of the best in Atlanta.

When people bring up the topic of Atlanta’s music culture, I notice that they almost always go in the direction of “There’s a lot of [music] competition in Atlanta.”

And while that may be true, you’d be surprised to know that Atlanta musicians are all about supporting one another and wanting success for their peers just as much as they want it for themselves.

Now, there are the genres (such as hip hop and R&B mostly) that the competition is real, but for the most part, it is all about everyone making it to the next level.

Conclusion

There’s nothing wrong with wanting to be one of the best in the city because there’s enough space for everyone.

The music scene in Atlanta is unlike anything else you’ll find in the states.

That’s why so many people come here when they are ready to get serious about developing their music talent and making a lifestyle out of it.

Photo credit: Rebloggy.com; Cloud9living.com


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Using Pinterest to Lose Weight

April 11, 2015 - By 

It’s almost summer, and that means it’s time to get in shape and start looking good.

You can deny it all you want, but about 99% of us are in the need of some quick and easy ways to lose weight.

I know I am.

And because I don’t have any kind of special fitness talent, I’m relying on weight loss blogs and ‘how to lose weight’ posts on Pinterest to get the job done.

So, today I want to shift the conversation from talking about your talent to talking about what we can do to get our minds and bodies ready for the summer.

I know we’re already in week 2 of April, but it’s not too late to get started!

I’ve literally been handpicking and using what I thought were the best weight loss tips and ideas on Pinterest, and I’ve compiled them for you below.

If you already have a weight loss regimen, that’s awesome.

But this post is for those who know they want to lose weight, yet have been too lazy to figure out a regiment on their own. :)

That said, here you are! (TIP: Click on the image to make it bigger)

Pinterest Weight Loss Tips and Regimens

1. Fitness at Home

Loss weight workout tips on pinterest

Trust me when I tell you this workout will have you burning a good amount of calories, especially the first time you do it.

When I started, I was barely able to make it through two rounds, much less 3-5.

Now, though, I’m maintaining three rounds and am trying to do this at least three times every week.

I know for sure this workout contributed to the 7 pounds I lost last month.

Shared by Pinterest user Loraine Wood // Tip taken from Running to the Kitchen

Photo credit: Drphoenyx.com

2. Eat your Heart Out!

Healthy food chart to lose weight from Pinterest

I’m the type that usually goes for whatever food I’m craving at the moment.

That means I put little thought (if any) into the amount of calories, saturated fat, etc. it has and whether or not it is actually “healthy.”

Well, let’s just say that all changed when I tried some of the foods on this chart I found on Pinterest.

I can’t lie, I didn’t TOTALLY commit to the 7 days or all the foods listed, but I did try a handful of them and ending up shedding about two pounds when it was all said and done.

Hey, it’s a start! I challenge you to commit to all 7 days!

Shared by Pinterest user V.R. // Tip taken from Everyday Fashion Budget.

3. Tone It Up!

Tone it up summer workout chart from Pinterest.

Ladies, this one is for you!

Summer is knocking on the door and we have to be ready!

I tried each of the workouts on this chart and I was BURNING at the end – but it’s worth it!

I’ve been doing it twice per week for about three weeks now and I can definitely see a difference!

Your turn!

Shared by Pinterest user Tone It Up Karena and Katrina // Tip taken from ToneItUp.com.

4. Belly Fat Blaster

Men workouts for losing weight from Pinterest

Alright, so we’ll end with the guys.

This weight loss regimen interested me because I wanted something that would give me a 6-pack really quickly, and I have this weird hypothesis that workouts for men produce results faster than those for women. :/

At any rate, just doing two of the workouts three time per week for two weeks has helped me lose about 2.5 pounds (and left me sore as all out!)

Shared by Pinterest user Jazzy Jude // Tip taken from WorkoutLabs.com

Conclusion

There you have it!

These are just a few of my personal Pinterest picks for losing weight, but, if you’re familiar with Pinterest, you know there is a slew of workout tips, weight lose regimens, and everything in between being shared.

If you try any of these come back and let me know the results you saw.

We’re all in this together!

Photo credit (main): Drphoenyx.com


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How to Get People Promoting Your Talent

March 31, 2015 - By 

Word of mouth is one of the most powerful forms of marketing – especially in a big city like Atlanta, where everyone has some type of talent they’re trying to become known for.

So, why is word of mouth so credible? Because when people talk about what they like to their friends, followers, family, etc., that marketing is based on 3 things:

  • Their experience with whatever it is they are talking about
  • Their genuine interest in wanting whoever they’re talking with to benefit from it
  • The trust and/or credibility they have associated with what they’re talking about

In most cases, word of mouth is centered on a product or service, but it can also be surrounded around an experience.

For example, if someone who is a fan of your skills tells someone else about how talented you are, they are sharing details about they experience of seeing your talent.

In that case, they are not promoting your talent to others. And we all know how important it is to get others to know about what you do because that can lead to more opportunities to grow your local reputation and possibly make some money from your talent.

So, now that you know how important it is to get people in Atlanta knowing about what you do, here are 3 tips for getting people to promote your talent to the people they know.

Tips to Get People Talking about Your Skills

Regardless of the type of talent you have, you still need those supporters who root for you and want to see you make it, so here’s how you turn those supporters into advocates of your skills:

1. Involve them in what you’re doing

Sometimes it isn’t enough for people to just “see” what you know how to do – it may be best if you regularly involved them in what you were doing.

This can doing things like letting people know if you’ve been booked for a show, or involving them on your plans to get out and promote your talent to others, etc. If they feel like they are involved in your development, they are likely to contribute to what you’re doing by also spreading the word.

2. Ask for suggestions and feedback

Like I said before, Atlanta is a big city and nearly everyone has some type of talent they are bringing to the table.

Since that’s the case, you need to take every opportunity to improve what you’re doing – and that often involves getting feedback from people who support you.

You may already be doing this, but make sure that you aren’t just asking for feedback and then not doing anything with it. Let the person who gave you feedback see that you are actually implementing it and that it is helping you improve your skills. This way, they won’t be ashamed of bragging about you to the people they know.

3. Reciprocate

The last thing you want to do is expect others to do something for you and not do anything in return.

If your supporters have some type of talent or skills of their own, make sure you tell the people you know who could benefit from knowing. This will show them that you aren’t just looking for something that benefits you.

Conclusion

I can almost promise you that if you follow these simple tips, word about your talent will start to spread quicker than it’s ever done before.

The most important tip of all is probably #3. You don’t want your supporters to feel used or feel like you are only focused on things that benefit you.

Still, though, try using all 3 of them and let us know how much your Atlanta reputation starts to frow.

Are your friends currently spreading the word about your talent to people they know?

Photo credit: Racheljdaniel.com


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The Best Time to Sell Your Music Online

March 23, 2015 - By 

As a musician, you’ve likely spent hours upon hours recording new music work and have put together an album that is finally ready to be released.

But what comes next?

Often times, the toughest task for a budding artist or new musicians is finding the right way to sell your music online.

If you’re currently experiencing this dilemma, the first thing you want to do is figure out where you want to sell your music online.

That will probably be the easy part, it’s what comes next that you will need guidance on.

So, here are some quick tips to better the timing. of your next release.

Timing Your Music Release

Here are some key tips for helping you figure out the best time to sell your music online.

Stay up on trends

Music trends change with time, and if you already have songs or music ready to be sold, make sure to start promotions and marketing straightaway when new trends start to surface.

If you don’t think you can do this on your own, consider hiring a manager who can look into the new possibilities of marketing music on social media and websites where your music can start reaching the masses.

Planning a new brand of music is a time consuming process, and the earlier you start, the better marketing results you can achieve.

Focus on events

Music events are great times to celebrate music, and depending on the genre, it can be wise to release albums when people are looking for new work.

Think of the Super Bowl, special music festivals and other occasions when more fans are prowling the Internet for new, cool media.

The idea is to find the right event or time of the year and use the marketing channels and other resources to release the songs/music as widely as possible.

Release during a tour

If you intend to tour with your music around cities, clubs and other places, releasing new music around the time of the tour is a great way to get attention.

For budding new talent, it is even prudent to take part in music tours with other artists and release songs/music on the web at the same time to increase fan interest.

Conclusion

Not all musicians can go solo right at the start, so collaborating with others can be a great idea.

New artists are always in focus, and the gains are even bigger when many names come together.

Instead of trying alone, try setting up music release with fellow musicians on the same day, so that everyone’s work can help draw fans towards others in the plan.

Photo credit: Headphone.com


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Top 11 Fitness Hashtags Used on Instagram

March 18, 2015 - By 

Surely, we all know what it’s like to be addicted to Instagram.

And for the people who are also really big into fitness, or have a fitness and health talent, it’s not uncommon to see them document their journey of health and fitness on this platform.

I’ve screened some of the hashtags related to the areas of health and fitness, and narrowed down the top 11 fitness-related hashtags used on the ‘Gram.

So, if you ever decide you want to join in on the fitness fun, these are the hashtags you’d want to use to help give your efforts a little bit of visibility on Instagram.

#InstaFitness

Gumonfel on Instagram #instafitness

#Instafitness is among the most popular hashtags used to tag fitness photos on Instagram.

It’s generally used to identify what most would refer to as an instant fitness session! Now that’s what you call being effectively social.

Photo Credit: Gumonfel

#FitnessFreak

100 calorie burn #FitnessFreak

Another frequently used hashtag is #fitnessfreak.

Most users sweat it all out at the gym, and their fitness mantra shows right on their Instagram account.

Other times, fitness tips to help users become fitness freaks are shared across Instagram (like the one above).

#EatClean

Instagarm photo from ParkerPropertyTeam #eatclean

What do you do after a session of healthy snacks? You post a picture straight in your account and use the hashtag #eatclean, which is among the most overused ones on this list!

Photo Credit: ParkerPropertyTeam

#WeightLossJourney

Weight loss inspiration #Weightlossjourney

Intending to lose weight?

Well, get inspired when you see images that come with the hashtag #weightlossjourney, directly from people who are headstrong about their efforts!

#HealthyLiving

Instagram photo by Nicapamela #Healthyliving

For those into taking care of their entire body inside and out, exercise and a healthy lifestyle, you will see them using the #healthyliving hashtag.

Photo Credit: Nicapamela

#GirlsWithMuscle

Instagram photo by Nammura #Girlswithmuscle

Easily a popular hashtag for the ladies, this one of frequently used by gym loving girls, often with the right show off image! Add #girlpower too!

Photo Credit: Nammura

#TrainHard

Fitness inspiration #Trainhard

Gym sessions, grueling body building efforts, and inspiring quotes often show up with the #trainhard hasgtag.

#YogaChallenge

Instagram photo by YogaOfPersia #Yogachallenge

For those who are not into gym, #yogachallenge is another hashtag often used to post pictures of their natural ways of living!

Photo Credit: YogaofPersia

#BeastMode

Beast image #Beastmode

#beastmode is certainly among the most popular hashtags used by people who practically live in the gym.

If you train hard and train a lot, you can pretty much call yourself a beast!

#GymLife

7-day gym schedule #Gymlife

Call it generic, but this is what thousands of people use after a simple workout. The hashtag #gymlife is easy and catchy to say the least!

#InstaHealth

Finteness inspiration #Instahealth

Truly depicting the easy way to refer to healthy living, #instahealth is a hashtag that’s cool and quite effective – no matter if you are at the gym or eating organic!

The other hashtags worth mentioning are #instagood, #strongisbeautiful, #lovewhatyoudo and #instagramfitness.

What Instagram hashtags are you using for your social pictures?


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4 Photo Editing Software Options for Photographers

March 10, 2015 - By 

Creating flawless and admirable images is all about the right camera, perfect timing and well-intentioned natural editing.

If you are into photography and are in need for photo editing software, the most obvious choice still seems like Adobe Photoshop. But, sadly, Photoshop cannot be unerringly called handy, for the fact that you need to learn the software before making the most of it.

So, whether you’re using your photography to capture the beauty of modeling talent or the resourcefulness of nature and the outdoors.

That said, here is a list of top four photo editing software that are worthwhile for every photographer – novices and experts.

Photography Editing Software to Try

If you are torn between which software to use for editing your photos, of if you don’t know of any software outside of Photoshop, consider these four options for your next editing project.

GIMP

GNU Image Manipulation Program, or GIMP as it is shortly called, is a free software and a great alternative to Photoshop.

The software is available for your computer and MAC and offers professional editing tools and some great retouching options. Most importantly, you don’t need a fortune of time and money to use this one. On the flip side, initially there is a need to understand how the tools work.

Picasa

If you don’t need software options that are advanced or too complicated to use, Picasa is just apt for basic use. Acquired by Google, this is a free app, which also works as a photo organizer and allows sharing images on the web.

All the basic editing tools are in place, and for photographers who don’t heavily edit their natural images, this is like the simplest solution at hand.

Serif Photo Plus

Another powerful photo editing software, Serif Photo Plus is free and has a paid version, as well. Filters, effects, resizing, and other tools are in place for the free version, and if you don’t mind shelling the extra amount, the paid version still costs lesser than Photoshop.

The advanced robust features in the paid upgrade should work for amateurs and expert photographers alike. The only negative aspect is the lack of better tools in the free version offered for download.

PhotoScape

PhotoScape works as one of the high-quality photo editing software options out there, and apart from editing images, you can also make GIFs and slideshows.

There are some commendable advanced tools for editing photos and is capable to convert RAW images into other formats from your DSLR cameras. The only flip side of this software is the huge number of ads, triggering you to download other programs.

Conclusion

Apart from the above four, photographers looking for free options can also check one of the free online photo editing software, which include options like Pixlr.com, Fotor and iPiccy, each having their own benefits.

Revamping your raw photos into stunning creations doesn’t have to be tough anymore.

photo credit: Robert Scales via photopin (license)


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6 Basics for Getting People to Buy Your Mixtape

March 3, 2015 - By 

Well, you have unquestionably invested a lot of time in putting together a great mixtape, meaning the most important part of your journey begins: Selling it!

So, if you want more people to know about your music talent and actually buy your mixtape, here are six basics you should be working on prior to and during its release.

Get serious about your personal brand

You have to remember that there are a lot of mixtapes being introduced by independent artists every single day. The question is: How do you actually sell your own music?

The main focus here is on branding, where you add your own elements to create a design that stands out in the crowd. Invest in unique personal branding practices that can engage your current audiences and get others who aren’t yet familiar with your music excited about it.

Consider free promotions

Promoting your mixtape is about creating buzz around it, and for that reason you need to consider free promotions of your music to drive interest and engagement.

Put your online presence and social media accounts in full swing to create engaging content and start conversations with your fans. Remember, your selling tactics should alwaysinvolve your personal touch.

Plan the release…well in advance

Mixtapes, when accompanied by a solid release plan, can fetch huge success for you as an independent artist. Make sure that you plan the process of release, which should be about creating content and videos that can be shared online. Luckily, videos are cost-effective, so consider making a few to promote your work.

Try expanding your audience

The first step to getting people to buy your mixtape will involve knowing your audiences and the best ways to reach them. Depending on the content, you can choose to be a part of group performances, events and other particular gatherings, where you can talk about the mixtape. If possible, use paid media advertisements, make yourself available for interviews, and launch promotions to help sell you.

Tell your story

Selling talent in a competitive market can be hard, but with an emotional approach and personal elements in the promotions, it can be easy to get people to buy your work! Tell stories about your journey and talk about the elements that will excite your fans. Trust me, your supporters will relate to an inspiring story!

Make your mixtape accessible to more than one audience

This will be a very critical part of your advertising campaign. Unless a diverse group of people have access to your mixtape, you are going to limit your growth. Take time to find the sources, platforms and online mediums where people can find your mixtape easily. Curiosity coupled with accessibility will push more people to spend their money on your music.

Remember, with planning and creativity, selling your mixtapes should be fun!


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7 Ways FOX’s ‘Empire’ is Grounded In Reality

February 26, 2015 - By 

If you haven’t become addicted to Fox’s new hit series ‘Empire’ yet, there are some serious reasons to watch the show that has experienced unprecedented ratings growth since its launch 7 weeks ago.

With every weekly episode drawing more viewers than the week prior, here are a few ways the new series’ storyline is grounded in reality.

Is There Any Truth Behind The ‘Empire’ Storyline?

1. Empire centers itself on the amazing story of the Lyon family, which includes the music tycoon Lucious who spends his life dealing with ALS, three competing sons, and Candy, Lucious’ ex-wife who has returned home from prison and looking to bring her family together. For a series that works around music talent and hip-hop genre, the character layers are amazingly close to what people perceive.

2. The creators of the show, Lee Daniels and Danny Strong, know the current audiences, which is why Empire plot moves faster than ever. While the showbiz glamour is intact, Empire was quick to establish the melodrama of the expansive family, adds the right element of mystery as well.

3. Timothy “Timbaland” Mosley has been roped in to score original scores for the series. The music itself is reality-based, because the performances will be coming straight from the natural development of the characters. Basically, you have a series that directs the music, and not the other way around!

4. Empire largely caters to the underserved audiences, so the African-American section has been given due importance. No wonder the series benefits great viewership from the classes and sections of audience otherwise ignored.

5. Focusing on the hip-hop genre at this level isn’t something that many series have managed to do successfully, but Empire talks of the diversity of the genre and mixes it with gossip, romance and more to create a believable premise.

6. Empire benefits from the way the characters are sketched. There are three sons, one of whom is an MBA, the second is a singer-songwriter, and the third a party animal. Honestly, with the stunning diversity in the characters, the series surely knows that audiences don’t want high-end pop drama.

7. Finally, you have the reality check in the way the two main characters, Cookie and Lucious, are created. They are the perfect examples of how Americans dream – starting from low to having a Manhattan mansion. The story itself tries to connect to the layers in the audiences, giving them the dreams they want to see onscreen.

Commending ‘Empire’

The show, or should I say its writers, has done an extraordinary job at capturing the realness of life in the music industry and making it relatable to all types of audiences – regardless of if those audiences know one thing about that lifestyle.

It would be interesting to see how the talented creators and near-perfect casting works towards retaining the exclusive buzz it was created so far! There is a lot of talk that the series was not prepared for its sudden and growing success, so we can only wait and see what will come next in Season 2.


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8 Tips for Marketing Your Talent on Pinterest

February 24, 2015 - By 

Millions of users, a visually appealing platform and some great marketing concepts make Pinterest worth the place where you can market you talent and gain huge.

Check out these 8 nifty tips to use the new age social platform for your benefit.

Promoting Your Brand On Pinterest

1. Account on Pinterest, like any other social platforms, needs to be completed to perfection. If you have a blog, ensure you have the button for pinning.

2. Pinning across a number of boards, following others, pining and re-pinning should be on the loop. It is equally imperative that you create pins relevant to your talent and place them on your account strategically with time difference.

3. Pinterest may need you to understand how it actually, so you won’t end up just re-pin everything you see. Your talent is a brand, so consider adding a watermark to the images and videos you make, so that sharing by others hogs you limelight.

4. Being social is important for talented person looking for a market. Always remember to thank others for re-pins, like other pins and be socially active on the site, because no one wants to follow a narcissist.

5. Creating great images is important, and if you don’t have unique images all the time, you can consider clicking or buying them. Also, you have Pinstamatic and Instagram that can help in creating and editing images.

6. Freshness is the solution to selling talent. Do not overindulge in self-promotion, but work on creating a brand that has promotional pins but also the informative ones that others usually want to read. Try new ways to sell you talent without being too open about it, which is best done with original and innovative content/images/videos.

7. Being regular is important for any social media site, and Pinterest is no different. Make sure you have time to respond to the re-pins, comments, and other activities of your followers, which will only increase brand value over a period of time.

8. Think beyond the basics of online marketing on Pinterest. If you are promoting talent, you might want to invite your clients and prospects to check your pins, and before you do all that, make sure the number of pins and overall freshness quotient is effectively ensured.

Pinterest has the potential of bringing new supporters who will help grow your brand identity, and given its growth in the last four years of its launch, marketing your talent here is only an added dimension to social media efforts.


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5 Marketing Strategies Every Talented Person Should Use

February 13, 2015 - By 

Talented professionals have many things to deal at a given time, but one thing that needs particular concentration is the marketing aspect. No matter what talent you have, there is going to be a lot of effort that goes in reaching the right clients and audiences before you can actually sell your talent to them.

Here’s a quick take on the top five marketing strategies that come handy for every professional across different industries.

Increase Your Social Media Exposure

Social media is easily among the biggest platforms to market and gain exposure for your talent. As a professional, you need to have updated accounts on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram to name a few. These platforms are great when it comes to engaging in conversations.

Enhance Your Online Branding

Having some level of online/web reputation can help in more ways than one. Firstly, it makes your talent accessible for others and helps them gain confidence in your potential.

If you don’t have any experience in online branding, you can hire a manager that will look into the media ties and integrate the online branding plan with social media marketing.

Focus On Local Marketing

From reaching talent acquisition companies to maintaining personal touch with talent managers, agents and professionals, local marketing is extremely important.

Talented professionals always reach the right events, parties, gatherings and local meets, where they can meet and talk with others. Keeping sync with the local industry only betters your prospects in the long run and keeps you afloat in the competition.

Leverage The Competition

Learning to leverage your competition also lets you identify with the market and how it responds to a particular form of talent. Spend a little time in appreciating how some people you know are faring better, which will help in revisiting the elements that need more interest.

Be Consistent

Marketing personal talent may often meet with little success, but that’s quite okay. You need to take into account that self talent promotions is all about time, and even if the initial hit rate is limited, the same will only better when you are focused on the job.

Make a point to work out on the industry graphs, find the right people and professionals to look up to and you will soon find new tricks of the trade.

If you haven’t tried marketing your talent as yet, start with these tips and you will find experimental ways to evolve.

Photo Credit: TT3_8417 via photopin (license)