lightstock fall giveaway feature

Fall Photos [Giveaway!]

There’s something about the changing of seasons, especially when summer turns to fall. This transition reintroduces our love for colors, pumpkin spice, cinnamon, sweatshirts, apple cider, and of course apple cider doughnuts. Now, these are a few of my personal loves of fall, and there are so many more.

With all of these new(ish) things come the fall season may also bring contemplation. I find myself reflecting on what has happened over the years—looking at what I’ve accomplished, reviewing photos, and reconnecting with people that I may have lost touch with over the summer.

Continue reading…

road to success

Finding Success As A Beginner Blogger

This last year has been amazing for the seventy8 Productions blog. We began with nothing, an empty slate, and ideas to put into words. We have shared our favorite memories, but we did share the details of the stats that we have been so excited. Our first post received a whole three views and that month we had ten unique visitors. Now, we are averaging about 4,000 unique viewers a month, a 400,000% increase in a year… not bad.

The dream of blogging began simply as trying to provide some fun stuff for you and record some other thoughts and research for later use. The added benefit that came out of it is that I was able to better conceptualize youth ministry constructs as I prepared for the different relationships and events. When I added the student leadership program and had a summer intern, I planned everything out ahead of time, went through the feedback I received from everyone, and put it into action. I love to converse with great youth workers and tech people, both on the website and through other venues.

Here are the stats over the last nine months:

[easychart type="horizbar" height="100" title="Monthly Unique Pageviews" groupnames="Months" groupcolors="005599" valuenames="Apr,May,June,July,Aug,Sept,Nov,Dec" group1values="672,761,1202,915,1058,2172,3572,3311,4222" ]

While success is easily measured through pageviews, number of comments, and people who have subscribed to your RSS feed, that is a sterile approach to interacting with people. To measure success means more than cold numbers, instead you need to invest the time and energy that can build relationships, share wisdom, and find great resources to have better your own ministries.

We want to share some of the things that we have found to be success. Here are three things we have found to not only increase the number of people that view our website, but make for a better blogging experience.

  1. Give Away Free Stuff. This is by far the best way to increase the views and benefit others. In fact, three of our five top viewed pages were free resources that we gave out and the category of free stuff accounts for more than twenty percent of our traffic overall. At the same time, people offered up some great constructive criticism that will help make better material for the future to share. If you are not offering free stuff on your blog, you are losing out on what you have to share and the views that come with it.
  2. Content Is King, Always. Regardless of if you plan to write to make the money or just for the hobby, you need to know what you are going to write about and write it well. Success does not just fall into your lap. Writing a post may require experiencing something in life or ministry, taking the time to do the research and flesh out an article, or having some professional opinions of hot topics of the week. This will require using SEO techniques to know what people are searching for and viewing, writing about unique material that you are an expert on (or at least know what not to do), and putting in the elbow grease for your posts. If you do not put in the effort, you will not get the results.
  3. Guests Posts Give A Voice To The Audience We love our guest posts. The response to offering guest posts has been amazing and the quality of content was better than we could ever expect. In fact, we plan to make one of the guest authors a regular on the website this month. Not only do we give a voice to a group of people, that week of guest posts not only freed up a week for us at seventy8Productions, but it was the third most active week for us from viewers. Guest posts are a must for all bloggers! Make an event of it.

FREEBIE FRIDAY : Particle Stock Footage & Tutorial

free_particles

Here is a great tutorial and free motion backgrounds from the amazing website on After Effects, VideoCopilot.com.

Looks like we are having another free stock footage day that includes 15 new HD (720p) particle clips and a quick tutorial with some compositing tips & ideas. For tips on creating your own footage check out Flour Fusion show.  Sweet Deal!!

Example Footage

Watch Tutorial

FREE Particle Stock Footage:
Download Stock Footage (162 MBs)

Footage is in h.264 compressed MP4 files. Usage License. Enjoy!

FREEBIE FRIDAY : Fourth Quarter 7-Week Curriculum

Here is the fourth and final installment of our curriculum. In 1 & 2 Samuel, we will be looking at the life of David, where he started, how he came to be king, the mistakes that he made, and how he was redeemed through his lineage to the birth of Christ. There are so many good stories here to introduce to students all of which can easily be applied to the life of a teenager: knowing God loves you, trusting in Him, living the life God has for you, falling into sin, and yet knowing we can find salvation in Him (Matthew 1).

These lessons cover:

Bible-Based
1 Samuel 16, 1 Samuel 17, 1 Samuel 19, 2 Samuel 7, 2 Samuel 11, Matthew 1

Use it, rework it, just do not resell it.

High School Curriculum (part 4)

Why Our Services Are Free

For those in youth ministry, there are so many great services out there that offer great curriculum, motion backgrounds, web services, and pastoral care services. seventy8productions has never intended to come into any of these markets and compete for providing products or services. What we love and feel called to do is all pro bono work. Here are three reasons why:

Making Money Was Never The Intent
We wrote an article a few weeks ago that talked about why we blog. One of those reasons was personal archiving of those and the other was to share (for free) products we were creating through our own local ministries.

Stephen and myself have always had a calling on our lives to serve the Church in unique venues with gifts God has blessed us with. Now that we are serving as adults in our own ministries, we still have that calling and want to share it with all of the new youth workers, low-budget ministries, little technology experienced Christians, and new bloggers, website owners and social media users.

We Can Say No Whenever We Want
One of the unique opportunities that offering free services gives us is that we can say no whenever we want. During this busy camp season, we had to say no to a couple of fun jobs for the month of July. At the same time, we can go at a pace that best suitS our work schedule.

Builds The Kingdom For Those Cannot Afford Much
Maybe the best part about this work is being a blessing to those who might not otherwise pursue certain projects or dreams. Many of these people have great ideas and potential and just need a little help, but cannot afford specific overhead costs. We love being a small part of the bigger dreams and journeys.

The distant future is unknown. We could add sponsorships, advertisements as well as part-time, flexible contract work, but for now we will keep giving freely. If you have a request or any questions for us, visit our Contact Us page.