Adobe Photoshop Tutorials – The Color Mode Function

Welcome to a series of Photoshop tutorials that will be taking a look at the various features that you will need to understand in order to get the very best out of your Photoshop software.

The color modes and color models of digital imaging seem to be a bit of an enigma to those first experiencing Photoshop. The diversity of color modes can be so overwhelming that novice users many times avoid these features without realizing the impact color modes can have on the end results of the image.

Color modes determine the color model that should be used to display and print digital pictures. Anyone serious about professional quality digital imaging should learn about the color modes and models and how to apply them in Photoshop. Certain color modes are best for particular applications and so on. Most good Photoshop tutorials and training aids will teach user how and when to use which color modes for the best results depending on the particular project.

Before you even begin working with the color modes in Photoshop it is a good idea to have a basic understanding of what the color modes are and why there are different models.

To start, digital images are displayed using several different color modes. This tutorial highlights the basic color modes you will come upon when working with digital images.

RGB

RGB stands for Red Green and Blue. In the RGB color mode colors are produced by mixing these three primary colors. Essentially you are working with three color channels in RGB mode, each of which the intensity level can be adjusted separately to attain various degrees of colors. White is created by combining all of the three colors.

CMYK

CMYK stands for cyan, magenta, yellow and black. RGB produces colors by mixing them together, while CMYK in effect creates color by subtracting varying degrees of each color. For example, to produce white, all colors would be reduced to zero.

Learning about the color modes will result in big improvements in your digital imaging work. Printers use CMYK color while monitors use RGB. This is why there is sometimes a difference in what you see on your PC monitor and what you see on paper. Fortunately there is now software that you can install which will calibrate your monitor colors with your printer so what you see on your monitor is what you get when you print.

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Why VAs Should Use WordPress to Power Their Websites

Virtual Assistants need websites to market to their clients and showcase their services. If you are a virtual assistant who does not know much about web design and development, do not worry about hiring a web designer yet. Take a look at this to find out why you should use WordPress to power your website.

It’s free. It doesn’t cost anything to use WordPress. Once you cover the costs of your domain and your web host, you’re good to go. Your web host should support MySQL databases, because WordPress will require one of these to run. Many web hosts provide support for this technology, so you shouldn’t have to worry.

It’s customizable. There are many different themes and plug-ins available to help you customize your WordPress powered website to your liking. Many of these themes and plug-ins are completely free to use, and others you will have to pay for. There are also many different web designers who specialize in WordPress designs. Many themes come with instructions to help you customize their appearance even further with CSS. Thesis is a commonly used fully customizable WordPress theme, but requires purchase.

There’s tons of support. The community of developers for WordPress is very open. There is a good amount of documentation to help everyone with WordPress, regardless of experience level. With the WordPress.org website and thousands of others dedicated to it, there’s no doubt you will be able to find what you are looking for.

It’s great for SEO. SEO means search engine optimization. Search Engine Optimization refers to the practice of making your website work so that it is picked up by the search engines, to bring more natural traffic to your website. Traffic is necessary for a website to get business, and is often used to measure the success of a website or marketing campaign. Part of how the search engines rank a website is based on the number of links going from it, coming to it, and linking it together. All posts and pages are automatically linked together in a number of ways with WordPress. If you need additional help with SEO, there are plug-ins to help, too.

It doesn’t take much to install and it maintains itself. All you have to do is visit WordPress.org to download the files, and upload them to your web server with FTP. Once the files have been uploaded to your web server, all you need to do is run the “5 minute installation” to setup the database where your website information will be stored. It’s a very simple process

These are just a few different reasons to use WordPress to power your virtual assistance business. It’s great for people who don’t know much about web design and development, and it will work to connect to your audience of potential clients and other Virtual Assistants.

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Squeeze Page Tutorials – Copy Matters

If you’re putting together a sales page for a product, you will spend as much time, energy and money as necessary to create a winner. You realize that your sales page is the stem of the funnel, the place where people either buy or go away. You can’t afford to have a less-than-optimal money page.

Strangely, though, many marketers and the squeeze page tutorials upon which they rely fail to apply that same solid logic to squeeze pages. They are funnel stems, too. You either get a sign up or the prospect “walks away”. It can be your last shot to turn a visitor into a lead and, thus, a future customer. Nonetheless, the importance of good copy on squeeze pages is often completely overlooked or, in the best case scenarios, treated as an afterthought.

Can you get sign ups by quickly offering a freebie as an inducement and supplying a few bullet points? Of course. However, you’ll get a much higher response rate if you create a squeeze page that features persuasive copywriting.

Many squeeze page tutorials will break down the process of generating leads in great detail. They’ll discuss everything from autoresponder integration to page design. They won’t, however, discuss how to write something on that page that will really convince visitors to fill in those all-important blanks.

So, what’s the secret? It’s the same secret used in the best sales pages. Good copy. We’re talking about a properly-structured, persuasive message that makes it close to irresistible for the prospect to take the desired action. The exact structure and format of that short message will vary based on numerous factors, of course, but a good copywriter will find the right angle to improve your page’s performance.

If you’re doing your own copy, you’ll want to look at other squeeze pages for ideas. Don’t settle for what you get in the squeeze page tutorials, make an effort to see great examples in action. You’ll want to combine that research with a very succinct and well-organized persuasive message unique to your product or service.

If you rely on professional copywriters for your sales page, you may very well want to turn them loose on your squeeze pages, too. Remember, the money is in the list. You want a big list. And an integral part of maximizing sign ups is the presence of good copy.

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Squeeze Page Tutorials – The Assurance

Squeeze page tutorials make it sound easy. It doesn’t seem like you’re asking for that much. All you really want from that website visitor is an email address and a name. It should be easy to get that kind of information–especially when you’re offering them something valuable in return.

Sometimes, though, it’s not that simple. There is a barrier to overcome. People are increasingly reluctant to hand out email addresses and even a great inducement may not be enough to overcome that predisposition in some cases.

So, what can you do? You need to create an environment that creates a level of trust and that assures the visitor that you will use his or her email address appropriately. If you can do that, you can considerably improve your sign-up rate. Unfortunately, this step in the process of successful lead generation is often overlooked in many squeeze page tutorials. Here are a few tips to point you in the right direction.

First, create a squeeze page that looks professional. If your site looks cheap, sloppy or “shady”, you’re going to have a tough time getting people to part with their information. The last thing a user wants is to provide his or her email address to a crazed spammer or someone that can’t be trusted. A proper appearance can increase your trust factor.

Second, make it easy for the user to find out who you are and what your business is really about. Again, people just don’t trust strangers. If you have real contact information right in front of their eyes, it’s a huge credibility builder. It makes people that much more likely to join up to your list.

Third, don’t neglect to include actual text discussing why you want the address and how it will be used. Not so long ago, you might be able to get by with “We don’t spam. Your information is safe.” Those days are gone. You need to be more specific and completely transparent in terms of what you’ll be doing with the address once provided. Not only is this fair to the prospect, it will also set his or her mind at ease about sharing the address.

If you’re working with squeeze pages, you’re only going to get the best results if you’re using the best practices. While some squeeze page tutorials may not mention it, that includes creating assurances on the page that will reduce sign-up resistance.

Have You Considered Using WordPress For Your Small Business Website?

Even if you run a bricks and mortar store, having a small business website is extremely important. There are many people that search for things online and then go out on the town and shop locally for what they found. I understand that you are on a budget with little time to spare, but that’s why you should be considering WordPress as a software option for running your website.

WordPress is an easy to learn and modify content management system that is open source and continually being upgraded. Open source software is free and usually supported by a fanatical community of users. These users are not only making updates in the code, but they are constantly building plugins and themes which are free or very low cost, this makes the modification of WordPress extremely easy.

Adding new content to your WordPress website is a piece of cake. With the click of a link in your admin section section, you will have started creating a new post or page. I would recommend using your posts to write about new products in stock and temporary sales and I would use the pages to post about more permanent specials and coupons.

If you don’t have a mailing list, WordPress can take care of that for you as well. You can offer your customers a place to subscribe to your blog’s RSS feed by email through Feedburner and then every time you post, you readers will have your post delivered straight to their inbox keeping you towards the front of their mind. This isn’t the best option for maintaining an email list for your customers, but it is free with WordPress and it can be pretty effective.

I hope you have figured out by now that starting your small business website with WordPress is simple and easy on your budget.