Do You Need Business Partners to Succeed? | ITTO Episode 1

Business partners can be the reason for a success AND/OR the cause of failure. See Pye Jirsa’s thoughts in this episode of “Is This Thing On.”

Is This Thing On (ITTO), is a new series where we’ll dive into commonly asked questions and current topics in the photography industry.

If you have questions that need answers, ask them in the comments down below!

See the full article here: https://www.slrlounge.com/should-you-go-into-business-with-other-people

Photography Marketing | How to Market Your Photography Business in 2019

The “secret” to great marketing in the photography industry is actually no secret at all.  Successful photography marketing in 2019 simply requires setting up sustainable systems, making sure your approach is multi-pronged and doesn’t rely solely on a single lead source or strategy.

Here are the 10 best photography marketing strategies for 2019:

Note: The information from this article is derived from Course 3 of our Complete Photography Business Training System. a 30+ hour, 4 workshop program to help you build the business of your dreams.

1. Marketing to Past photo Clients for Referrals

Marketing continues to evolve but one constant is the power behind word-of-mouth referrals. According to Nielsen, 83% of consumers say they either completely or somewhat trust recommendations from family, colleagues, and friends about products and services.

All photographers need to incorporate marketing to past clients as part of their workflow. It starts with a great overall client experience, timely delivery of images and making the client feel valued. Beyond that, consider campaigns like sending surprise prints and other gifts to turn clients into raving fans. Consider staying in touch with them via email, social media, and perhaps even in person. One approach is to consider anything you would do for a friend, from sending Christmas cards to staying up-to-date on their major life events.

2. Vendor and photography Network Referrals

Regardless of your photography genre, getting the recommendations of other professionals can benefit your business and serve as a consistent source of leads. While different for every genre, these professionals might include make up artists, model agencies, wedding planners, wardrobe designers and more.

The best way to market to vendors and other professionals is to simply benefit their business in any way you can. This includes referring them business, giving them additional exposure and recognition on your social media, and getting their work published in related magazines.

3. SEO and Content Marketing for Photographers

In 2019, online search is still one of the most frequent methods of finding services like photography. According the Search Engine Journal, 93% of online experiences begin with a search engine so incorporating SEO into your photography marketing is essential to long term growth.

SEO for photographers still starts with good content. Create information-rich, useful, shareable content on your website. Answer questions and become a trusted, reliable resource within your niche. Study keyword and link building strategies, understand local (maps) search results, learn about image search results, and more. It sounds daunting, but it’s not rocket science and it’s worth the investment of time and brainpower.

For more information, see our Photography SEO and Web Marketing Course.

4. Social Media Marketing for Photographers

One of the best rules of marketing is to always maintain a presence where your target market is. So depending on your niche, social media could be critical for your photography marketing.  Photographers should focus on the following platforms:

  • Instagram
  • Pinterest
  • Facebook

The key is to be smart with your time and understand that sustainable marketing requires a multi-faceted approach. These days, too many photographers spend too much time on social media, stressing about Instagram likes, Facebook shares and other vanity metrics. The goal is to bring social media into your workflow and maintain a consistent schedule.

For more info and specific tips and strategies on growing your social media marketing, see Course 3 in the Photography Business Training System.

5. Video Marketing in photography

According to Forbes, 90% of customers say video helps them make buying decisions and 64% of customers say that seeing a video makes them more likely to buy.

Creating videos has never been easier thanks to slideshow software like Adobe Spark, Animoto and even Lightroom. So no matter how busy you get, you should try to incorporate some video marketing into your plan this year.

Here are a few quick ideas on how to use video marketing in 2019:

  • Create a video on a specific subject and upload it to Youtube, making your work discoverable on the 2nd largest search engine.
  • Upload videos on Facebook, Facebook stories, Instagram, Instagram stories, Pinterest or even Twitter.
  • Use videos to supplement the content on your existing pages on your blog or website.

Here’s an example of a video our photography studio used to supplement an existing resource page.

6. business Directories and Online Listings for photography

Yelp, Weddingwire, Google Business, and Model Mayhem are all examples of online directories intended to connect you with those looking for your services. There are hundreds of business directories, so it’s important to be selective and find the right match for your niche.

Remember the old marketing rule of establishing a presence wherever your target clients are spending their time. If they are on Weddingwire, then you should be too. If they are on Yelp, you should invest some time on your profile over there as well.

For most photographers, it’s worth completing robust, accurate profiles that feature your best imagery on each of the websites that offer free accounts and are related to your niche. When allowed, it may also be worth your time asking your clients for reviews to build up your online reputation.

7. photo shoot Giveaway Marketing

Giving away your photography services as part of a promotional giveaway can be an effective way to generate leads and awareness of your photography business. Use a promotional giveaway app like Gleam to collect emails, incentivize actions that benefit your business, and drive viral sharing of the giveaway. When done well, these can generate thousands of leads and expand your reach beyond your current network.

Learn all about how to use this strategy in the bonus PDF of our marketing course.

8. photography Email Marketing

After you’ve collected an email, whether you got it from a giveaway, a lead magnet, or other legal method, sending a carefully crafted series of emails containing valuable information is a great way to nurture the lead with more touchpoints. According to Marketing Week, 15 years ago, the average consumer typically used two touch-points when buying an item and only 7% regularly used more than four. Today consumers use an average of almost six touch points, with 50% regularly using more than four.

To get started with email marketing, sign up for a newsletter service like Mailchimp. Or, if you’re a Squarespace user, utilize their email service. Set up a series of valuable emails to be delivered over time. Set up a form of lead generation (i.e. email collection). And tweak your funnel as necessary over time. For more info email marketing, see the bonus PDF in our marketing course.

9. photography Awards, Features and Publicity marketing

Winning awards, getting featured, and gaining other publicity can increase the discoverability and lend credibility to your business.

While awards and features alone won’t likely lead directly to bookings, they can decrease the friction and increase the trust a potential client would have in your abilities as a photographer.

Image by Ciprian Biclineru, SLR Lounge Award Winner

10. Paid Ads – Social Media and Adwords marketing

Facebook ads and Google ads are still viable marketing strategies in 2019.  However, they are only recommended if you have the time, experience and knowledge to manage them properly.  These fees can quickly add up and incorrect audience or keyword targeting is the same as throwing your money away.

In addition, with so many other marketing methods that don’t require a financial outlay, spending money for ads should be done sparingly, if at all.  Other methods of lead generation, like SEO and social media, continue to drive leads over time.  The content and the accounts are like assets you own that continue to provide benefits for your business.  On the other hand, if you rely primarily on paid ads, the minute you stop spending is the minute your leads dry up.

Conclusion – how to market a photography business

Like marketing any other small business, there are no short cuts with photography marketing.  The good news is that we have a surplus of beautiful visual assets that make our product shareable and appealing.  With the right guidance and allocation of time, there’s a great opportunity for success in 2019.

Here’s a quick summary of the 11 ways to market your photography business:

  • Photography Client Referrals
  • Vendor/Network Referrals
  • SEO and Content Marketing for Photographers
  • Social Media for Photographers
  • Video Marketing
  • Directories and Online Listings
  • Awards, Features and Publicity
  • Email Marketing
  • Giveaway and Charity Marketing
  • In Person Networking Events and Tradeshows
  • Paid Ads – Social Media, Adwords and More

We would love to hear from you.  What works?  What doesn’t?  Share your knowledge with the community!

Never Lose An Image With This File Backup And Cloud Storage Guide

You’ve no doubt heard the idiom that warns against putting “all of your eggs into one basket.” However cliche the phrase may be, these words of wisdom ring especially true when it comes to backing up your files.

A failed memory card or external hard drive can have a significant negative impact on a photographer’s business. Clients lose the captured moments that can never be recreated and photographers suffer a loss in reputation and revenue.

Follow this five-step workflow to securely back up your files and keep your photography business moving forward.

1. Use Cameras With Dual Card Slots

If you get hired to photograph an event, whether it be for corporate,  wedding, or even newborn clients, you should use a professional camera that offers dual memory card slots. The last thing you want to tell your client after shooting an event is that you lost some or all of the images due to a corrupt memory card. Recording onto two cards simultaneously provides an instant backup.

Redundancy at this level will save you from having to have that difficult conversation with the client whose memories have just been lost.

2. Upload All Important Files To Cloud Storage

Having an organized workflow is critical when backing up files. The moment you get back from a shoot, back up your files to the cloud!

This minimizes the risk of losing files in the event of a natural disaster, hardware failure, or worse, having your hardware stolen. If a particular device is stolen, files can be wiped from that device but kept safe in cloud storage.

Lastly, cloud storage files can be backed up for periods of 30 to 120 days from the time they’re deleted, which is especially useful in case of accidental deletions.

3. Separate Primary And Backup Memory Cards After Any Shoot

After each shoot, separate your memory cards. Keeping all of your cards together in one place may seem more practical, but it opens up a greater potential for loss should anything happen to the cards.

Assuming that you and the other shooters are using cameras with dual card slots, each shooter should have a minimum of two cards. Create sets that include one card from each shooter and place them into separate bags to be kept in different locations.  For example, you take one set home and keep the other set in your studio; or you can take one set to your home and the other set to your second shooter’s home. Include a piece of paper that contains the following information with each bag of cards:

  • Client’s name
  • Shooters’ names (if you have multiple shooters)
  • Date of the event
  • Number of cards each shooter submitted

Place this paper in the bag with the memory cards. Also, make sure the number of cards on the piece of paper and in the bag match.

4. Check File Count Before Formatting Memory Cards

We recommend creating a new catalog for each event you photograph, whether it be a wedding, corporate event, or bar mitzvah.

When uploading your images into photo editing software, select all photos from each card and write down the total image count. You should also verify that the date on all images on the card matches the date of the event.

After you’ve uploaded all of your cards, add up the number of images from each individual card and ensure that the total matches the number of files in the folder(s) you’re using to store the images.

For Lightroom users, make sure the number of images within your image folder matches that displayed on the bottom left corner when importing images.

Once the import is finished, scroll through all images to ensure that there are no corrupt images. If there are corrupt images, go to your backup card and re-import the corrupt images.

5. Deliver Files To The Client Before Deleting Archives

If possible, deliver your images to your client using your preferred online proofing method before deleting your image archive. Even then, when it comes time to decide between clearing out your storage or archiving your images in perpetuity, consider the following. The cost of storing your images is minimal in comparison to having a client return at a later date to ask for photos and having nothing to offer them but an apology.

At the very least, you should consider archiving the RAW “keeper” images that you delivered. Using the storage cloud is an affordable way to do this and it will free up space on your main workstation.

Conclusion

There are plenty of reasons to start using cloud storage to simply and safely backup your files, and very few reasons to put it off. From being able to access a variety of files offsite to keeping your files safe from hardware failure and theft, you have less to lose when using the cloud storage is part of your regular workflow.

What are some other benefits you’ve found when using cloud storage for your photography business?

 

 

This is a sponsored post for Dropbox. All opinions are my own. Dropbox is not affiliated with nor endorses any other products or services mentioned.

2018 Black Friday Deal Tracker

It’s that time of year again…. That month between late November through the new year when we photographers load up on all of the gear and software we need (and lots that we don’t need) for 2019.

To simplify things for you, our editorial staff is back with our annual Black Friday/Cyber Monday Deal Tracker for photographers.

Be sure to bookmark this page and visit DAILY as we’ll update it with the latest and greatest Black Friday deals that we find!

SLR Lounge Education: 30% of ALL Store Products, Training Systems, and SLR Lounge Premium.

Notable workshops and resources include the following:

  • Dell P2715Q 27″ Ultra HD 4K Monitor – $409 – Link
  • Dell S2715H 27″ 16:9 IPS Monitor – $184.95 – Link
  • Dell S2317HWi 23″ 16:9 IPS Wireless Connect Monitor w/ Wireless Charging Stand – $149 – Link
  • LG 29UM69G-B 29″ 21:9 UltraWide IPS Gaming Monitor – $179 – Link
  • Apple 21.5″ iMac (Mid 2017) – $999 – Link

 

  • Apple 15.4″ MacBook Pro with Touch Bar (Mid 2018, Space Gray) – $2,499 – Link
  • Apple 13.3″ MacBook Pro (Mid 2018, Silver) – $1,689 – Link
  • Lenovo 15.6″ IdeaPad 330s Notebook – $399 – Link
  • Dell 15.6″ Inspiron 15 5000 Series 5570 Notebook – $599 – Link
  • ASUS 15.6″ VivoBook S15 S510UQ Notebook – $729 – Link
  • Lenovo 2019 15.6″ HD Laptop Computer – $314 – Link
  • Apple 13.3″ MacBook Pro with Touch Bar (Mid 2017, Space Gray) – $1,399 – Link

 

  • SanDisk 64GB Extreme Pro CompactFlash Memory Card (160MB/s) – $69 – Link
  • SanDisk 64GB Extreme PLUS UHS-I microSDXC Memory Card with SD Adapter – $34,99 – Link
  • SanDisk 64GB Extreme PRO UHS-II microSDXC Memory Card with USB 3.0 Adapter – $44.99 – Link
  • SanDisk 128GB Extreme PRO UHS-II microSDXC Memory Card with USB 3.0 Adapter – $89.99 – Link
  • SanDisk 32 GB Extreme CompactFlash Memory Card – $30.77 – Link
  • SanDisk 128GB Extreme UHS-I SDXC Memory Card – $42.51 – Link
  • Samsung 128GB EVO Plus UHS-I microSDXC Memory Card with SD Adapter – $32.95 – Link
  • SanDisk 200GB Ultra UHS-I microSDXC Memory Card (Class 10) – $41.99 – Link
  • Samsung 256GB EVO+ microSDXC Memory Card with SD Adapter – $79.95 – Link
  • SanDisk 256GB Extreme PRO CFast 2.0 Memory Card – $679.74 – Link
  • Samsung 32GB EVO+ UHS-I microSDHC Memory Card with SD Adapter – $9.99 – Link
  • SanDisk 256GB Extreme Pro CompactFlash Memory Card (160MB/s) – $259 – Link
  • Samsung 128GB EVO Plus UHS-I microSDXC Memory Card with SD Adapter – $32.95 – Link

  • Samsung 500GB 960 EVO NVMe M.2 Internal SSD – $109.99 – Link
  • Samsung 1TB 960 EVO NVMe M.2 Internal SSD – $219.99 – Link
  • G-Technology 3TB G-DRIVE USB G1 USB 3.0 Hard Drive – $109.99 – Link
  • Samsung 1TB 860 EVO SATA III 2.5″ Internal SSD – $147.99 – Link
  • G-Technology 1TB G-DRIVE Mobile Micro-USB 3.0 External Hard Drive (Black) – $49.99 – Link


Camera Lenses

  • Sigma 14-24mm f/2.8 DG HSM Art Lens for Canon EF – $1,199 – Link
  • Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM Lens – $299 – Link
  • Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM Lens – $1,699 – Link
  • Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM Lens – $699 – Link
  • Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens – $299 – Link
  • Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 200-500mm f/5.6E ED VR Lens – $1,196 – Link


Camera Bodies

  • Nikon D750 DSLR Camera (Body Only) – $1,396.95 – Link
  • Canon EOS 5D Mark IV DSLR Camera (Body Only) – $3,099 – Link
  • Canon EOS 6D DSLR Camera (Body Only) – $999 – Link
  • Nikon D750 DSLR Camera with 24-120mm Lens – $1,896.95 – Link
  • Nikon D500 DSLR Camera (Body Only) – $1,796.95 – Link


Cinema Gear

  • ikan EC1 Beholder 3-Axis Handheld Gimbal Stabilizer – $369 – Link
  • GoPro HERO Session – $149 – Link
  • GoPro HERO7 Black – $399 – Link
  • Zhiyun-Tech WEEBILL LAB Handheld Stabilizer for Mirrorless Cameras – $599 – Link


Tech Accessories

  • USB C Hub, Micar 7-in-1 Type C Hub – $32.99 – Link
  • All-new Echo (2nd Generation) – $59 – Link
  • Sony XB950N1 Extra Bass Wireless Noise Canceling Headphones, Black – $113 – Link
  • Apple TV 4K (32GB) – $169 – Link
  • Apple TV 4K (64GB) – $189 – Link


MAGMOD

Website: Click Here

Offer: Black Friday early birds get free gift cards with orders over $300. Shipping is free all weekend long, too. Icing on the cake: up to 20% off thru Cyber Monday.

Valid: 11/16 – 11/26

Code: No coupon necessary (click link above)

About: MagMod makes flash modifiers the way they were meant to be. Our mission is to make awesome photography easy, by making tools that get out of the way of being more creative.


HONEYBOOK

Website: Click Here

Offer: 50% off your first year subscription

Valid: Undefined.

Code: No coupon necessary (click link above)

About: HoneyBook helps you book your ideal client faster, more frequently, and with less legwork.

Black Friday at the Big Retailers

AMAZON PHOTO DEALS

Of course, it’s not Black Friday unless you have Amazon in the mix.

Website: Click Here


B&HPHOTO DEALS

The next place we always check is B&H.

Website: Click Here

Black Friday Starts NOW at SLR Lounge | Huge Discounts

Black Friday starts early this year! We’re offering huge discounts on our most exciting products, including:

  1. The Photography Business Training System (Preorders)
  2. The Wedding Photography Training System
  3. SLR Lounge Premium
  4. The Entire Store!

30% Off business training system

If you’re ready to take your business to the next level in 2019 with comprehensive education on pricing, sales, marketing, SEO and more, jump into The Photography Business Training System. Our Black Friday Sale offers 30% off the entire training system. 

Step 1: Visit the Product Page

Step 2: Add This Workshop To Your Cart

Step 3: Enter Code BLACKFRIDAY2018

Note: Valid until 12/01/2018 or after the first 500 redemptions

See the trailer below:

Start Training

30% Off Wedding Training System

If you’re looking for the most comprehensive, A-Z wedding photography workshops and resources, our Black Friday sale also offers 30% off the entire training system. 

Step 1: Visit the Product Page

Step 2: Add Your Selected Workshops to Your Cart

Step 3: Enter Code BLACKFRIDAY2018

Note: Valid until 12/01/2018 or after the first 500 redemptions

See the trailer below:

Start Training

$150 Off SLR Lounge Premium

Take control of your photography career with the best education for photography.  Premium gives you streaming access to ALL of our courses.  Individually purchased, all of this education is over $2,500, but our Black Friday Sale makes it only $349.

Here is how you can take advantage:

Step 1: Visit the Premium Page

Step 2: Select the “Annual Plan”

Step 3: Enter code BLACKFRIDAY2018

Note: Valid until 12/01/2018 or after the first 500 redemptions.

Join Premium

30% Off All Workshops

If you would rather download and own our education, instead of stream it through Premium, our Black Friday sale also offers 30% off all of our store products.

Step 1: Visit Our Store

Step 2: Add Your Selected Workshops to Your Cart

Step 3: Enter Code BLACKFRIDAY2018

Note: Valid until 12/01/2018 or after the first 500 redemptions.

Explore our Store

SLR Lounge Premium testimonials

“SLR Lounge Premium membership totally changed my life by improving my business 10 fold!” – Rashad Mosley of Vision & Style Photography

“Having SLR Lounge Premium in my back pocket is invaluable.” – Michael Waller of Michael Waller Photography

“Their tutorials were the most comprehensive, entertaining, incredibly well produced and by far the best bang of the buck! The little time I do have available to improve my skills is spent watching SLR Lounge.” – Trevor Dayley Photography

“From posing to lighting to SEO and post-production, SLR Lounge has helped turn our hobby business into a full-time studio. If you’re on the fence about it, get off the fence and go invest in your future with SLR Lounge Premium. You won’t regret it.” Bryan Schneider of Schneider Family Photography

Back to School Tips for Parents 2018

It isn’t uncommon for children to feel nervous about experiencing situations that are new, such as changing to a new classroom, having a new teacher, or going to a new school. These changes could occur at any age during back-to-school season. For parents of children who are experiencing these feelings, it can be helpful to have rehearsals of what it could be like to enter into their new situation. For example, before the first day of school, parents and children can visit the school to help relieve those feelings of uneasiness. That is just one example of back to school tips for parents that we’re going to explore before children return to school this year.

1: Plan Ahead for the Transition Back to School

If possible, avoid back-to-school shopping at the last minute and try to do this ahead of time. It’s stressful to do this as summer is wrapping up, so purchase school supplies as soon as your child’s school releases classroom supply lists or when you know what your child needs.

Parents should also try to avoid scheduling activities and camps during the last couple of weeks of summer. In doing so, you’re causing additional stress while trying to scramble to accomplish tasks. For example, if you need to take your child to purchase school clothes and have them try items on, it’s difficult to do so if they’re away at camp.

2: Develop a Back-to-School Schedule

For some children, switching from going to bed late and waking up later in the morning to an earlier bedtime and waking up earlier in the morning is a challenge. If parents implement a back-to-school between one and two weeks before the start of school, this will help your children develop a habit of sleeping and waking during their designated times better. The ultimate goal is to help them readjust to an evening and morning routine that better suites back-to-school.

3: Talk About Back to School Often

When children are experiencing anxiety regarding the first day of school, parents can have family meetings about what their new school or about what the kids can expect during their school year. If children are entering kindergarten, middle school, or high school and it’s their first day of school, these conversations should occur frequently. Parents can discuss when the school day will begin, end, and what children can expect during their first week of school. During these discussions, parents should allow children the opportunity to ask a lot of questions and voice any concerns they have about school.

4: If Parents are Panicking, The Kids are Panicking

Parents should remember that, if they’re experiencing overwhelming feelings, they shouldn’t panic. If they’re starting to panic about back to school, then the kids are going to have those same feelings. It’s essential that everyone have an optimistic attitude about the upcoming changes in the household, as well as in routines. There is going to be a period of adjustment for everyone during the first week of school, but it will soon begin to feel just as regular as the summer months before long.

However, during the first week, some modifications and tweaking will become necessary for the school and home environment. Parents will need to figure out where to put school papers, backpacks, and other critical items that children can’t forget in the morning. Children will need to figure out what they’re responsible for on a daily basis with the help of their parents, and so on. If anxiety begins to hit, everyone should remember that these feelings will pass and everything will start clicking into place.

5: Make Sure Summer Homework is Complete

Some schools require summer homework, so it’s essential that parents ensure their children are completing these tasks. For example, the most common task to finish is a summer reading list. Some schools also require an additional activity to finish with that reading list. Parents should encourage their children to complete their assignments throughout the summer, rather than waiting until the last minute before back to school. That way, they’re not experiencing stress before entering their classroom during the first day of school. These activities help their brains stay in the routine of regularly acquiring information necessary for learning on a routine basis.

Wrapping Up

When parents are thinking about the back-to-school season, another thing to consider is reducing screen time. Their children may have gotten used to having additional screen time throughout the summer, so it may become necessary to reduce their usage gradually before the start of school. By following these tips, it’s possible to begin school with more preparation and less stress. Going back to school is an exciting opportunity for students to have new experiences, meet new friends, and explore new activities. Therefore, it’s essential for parents to help them get off on the right foot and make it as positive as possible.

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Why Learn Spanish?

Spanish is one of the most popular spoken languages in the world. The language is not only beautiful but it can be practical to learn for many reasons. Whether you want to explore new places and communicate with ease, build up your resume and expand your job prospects, or keep your mind sharp and active, learning Spanish is a smart move for anyone. Here are reasons why you should learn Spanish.

Improve your employment prospects

Being able to speak a second language will make your resume more competitive. Not only are you showing your willingness and capability to learn but you will also be able to communicate with ease with your Spanish-speaking clients. Being able to speak Spanish fluently will make you stand out in a competitive job market. You may also find that you’ll have the opportunity to work in a Spanish-speaking country.

Broaden your horizons

Spanish is commonly spoken throughout the world and learning this language can help you to explore the rich cultures and histories of Spanish-speaking countries.

Travel abroad

Whether you’re backpacking through Spain or spending the weekend in Mexico, the world is full of new adventures and opportunities. With the Spanish language at your disposal, you can travel through Spanish-speaking countries and communicate without flipping through an English to Spanish dictionary or using awkward hand motions to ask where the nearest bathroom is or to order a drink at the bar.

Meet new people

Expand your pool of friends and dates by learning Spanish. You’re always being told that there are plenty of fish in the sea and some of those fish surely speak Spanish, right? What could be the harm in learning something new and making some new friends while you’re at it? You never know, you may meet some lifelong friends in your language-learning endeavors.

Train your brain

Learning a new language is productive not only for your career and social life but also for your brain. Why not challenge yourself and your memory? You’ll be glad that you did and surprised by how much you can learn.

Don’t forget about all of the great food from Spanish-speaking countries

While you take the time to learn the language, why not check out some of the delicious foods, as well? Try out the savory paella, which is an internationally-known Spanish rice dish. This dish typically has a flavorful protein such as seafood (fish, calamari, mussels, scampi, clams, or prawns) or chicken and is paired with rice and a mouth-watering array of seasonings. If you’re looking for something a bit richer, try the Mexican mole poblano, which is a chili and chocolate sauce typically served over turkey.

Develop your first language

Learning a new language can also help you work on your old language, which is really convenient! There are so many aspects of grammar that you may have forgotten about that you learned in grade school but learning Spanish will force you to focus on sentence structure all over again and think about grammar more carefully. Not to mention, there are many similar Spanish and English words.

Get a running start on learning other languages

Learning Spanish can help you learn other languages, as well. Think of Spanish as a gateway to a world of other languages and cultures. By the time you’ve learned one language, you’ve picked up the tools and strategies in your head that can make it easier to learn, say, French or German. It also helps that, like English, there are many other languages with similarities to Spanish, which can make a world of a difference while learning them.

There are many ways to learn Spanish

While you may find learning a language to be intimidating, think about the fact that there are thousands of people around the world who either speak a second language or are learning a second language. Whether you want to take the more traditional route by taking Spanish classes with a group or find a Spanish-speaking conversation partner or pick up a few textbooks or spend a year in a Spanish-speaking country, there are so many ways to learn Spanish that are at your disposal. And given that there is no time limit, you can learn at your own pace and take the time to master Spanish on your own terms. Also, with the many language-learning apps available, you can learn Spanish on the go.

It’s fun!

While there are many practical reasons to learn a new language, keep in mind that it can also be pretty fun! Whether you’re watching some scary Spanish horror movies, reading the Spanish classics, or belting out a Spanish love song while driving down the highway, learning a language can be a pleasurable and fruitful activity that will keep you entertained for a lifetime.

Whether you’re looking to advance in your profession or travel through South America, there are many reasons to learn Spanish. Think of it as an adventure and keep in mind all of the opportunities that you can gain from expanding your horizons. With a large portion of the world already speaking Spanish, what are you waiting for?

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