Shapiro // © 2017 TravelAge West
There are at least half a dozen spots on my drive home from work — through West Los Angeles, Beverly Hills and West Hollywood — where people gather to take selfies and other photos. There’s a mural that says “Made in L.A.” There’s a wall painted bright pink. There’s a spot with street art incorporating clever sayings. Day or night, crowds of people stand in front of these backdrops, and others, and take photos. This has been going on every day for a few years now.
If anyone doubts the power of social media, just consider the hundreds of hours spent standing in front of a pink wall just to have something to post online.
Social media is not just a side effect of travel — it’s a central force. Increasingly, it influences all consumer decisions, from the destination and its activities to food and hotel choices. Savvy suppliers have, of course, figured out how to harness the power of social media, whether that’s utilizing peer reviews or incorporating Instagram-worthy moments into their offerings.
Agents have come a long way in developing their social media skills, as well. Many advisors have realized that inspiring social media content provides a perfect opportunity to promote their services while grabbing the attention of potential clients. And there is no better way to capture these moments than with great travel photography. Travel, photography and social media form a perfect triangle; each element complements the other.
In this issue, we share the results of our Seventh Annual Reader Photo Contest (“Picture Perfect,” page 14). As you’ll see, many agents are multitalented — skilled at travel planning and also at taking amazing shots.
The pictures we highlight are truly remarkable, but even a quick scan of agents’ social media accounts shows that there are many talented advisors out there capturing and sharing great images. With the bar set so high, any agent who refuses to use photo-graphy to promote their services is woefully outgunned in the battle for new business.
Hopefully, the images in this issue will inspire you to step up your own image sharing. If the pink wall is any indication, there is no shortage of interest out there.