John DeMato - NYC Branded Lifestyle Portrait Photographer

NYC Branded Lifestyle Photographer - Blog

NYC Branded Lifestyle Portrait Photography Blog | Hi, I'm John DeMato, and I collaborate with thought leaders to create powerful, purposeful and authentic images. This is my blog where I talk all about the magic behind the portraits we create.

It pays to fail


It pays to fail.


Your failure becomes a lesson not only for you, but your tribe, as well.


When was the last time that you shared a story with your audience where you completely fell flat on your ass and failed at something?

Or, how about this - when was the last time that you posted a story on social media where you didn’t position yourself as a superhero who took on a major, uphill challenge with total  ease and grace?

Perhaps you’re wondering why I would even pose these questions - well, the reason is simple.

When you share stories from your past that illustrate the mental, physical and emotional challenges that you’ve overcome to get where you are, you become much more influential to those who follow you.

Remember, they look to you for guidance and help to get past their hurdles, and, when they see you talking about how life and business has knocked you around like it has to them, they now have a deeper sense that you’re not just some flash-in-the-pan expert trying to make a buck off of your insecurities.

When you share your missteps, miscalculations and outright failures, you’re presenting a very open and extremely vulnerable side of your personality.  

Although it might not be the most joyful of posts, that vulnerability creates a deeper bond with your tribe.  It not only makes you more relatable to them as fellow entrepreneurs, it illustrates that you’re a human being and can truly empathize with your audience’s pain.

I am a firm believer in sharing this type of content and make it a priority to extract as many lessons as I can from the less-than-stellar aspects:

  • I’ve talked about my weight issues as a young man and how that contributed to a negative mindset around my self-worth.

  • I’ve discussed my lack of direction as a young entrepreneur and how that led to several years of panic attacks, depression and major inaction.

  • I’ve shared stories about how my upbringing fostered a fixed mindset around stability over risk-taking.

  • I’ve also talked adnauseum about my life in television production and how that experience left me resentful, angry and completely unfulfilled.

Needless to say, there’s very few topics that I would shy away from when creating valuable content that speaks directly to and motivates my tribe into action.

But, in all honesty, this is not something that I warmed up to in a short amount of time - it took me years to make the commitment, and, although it seems like a no-brainer at this point, that definitely wasn’t the case for a long time.

As a result, I completely understand the hesitancy to open yourself up in such a public way.

The tipping point for me was when I had this particular realization:

If I am preaching from the mountaintop about authenticity - authenticity in your branded lifestyle portraits, authenticity in the stories that you share with your followers, authenticity in the value of your thought leadership - then how can I not walk the walk, as well?

It was a powerful, and challenging, moment for me.

I was so used to hiding behind my work, and the thought of stepping out from behind the camera and revealing aspects of my personality and life for the consumption of others was unsettling, to say the least.

I felt that no one cared about who I was - they only wanted to see the work.

But, in order to draw in people to follow my work, and for them to be interested in working with me directly, I, first, had to give them a reason to care.

And, by taking off the “superhero” photographer suit, they now saw me as a human being who faces the same challenges they do with growing their businesses and brands. We’re now on an equal playing field, and that builds an immense amount of trust.

Take off your superhero suit, folks, and share with your tribe the process - the entire process - of how you got to put on that suit in the first place.

Does this content creation strategy resonate with you?

Well, there’s more where that came from in my one-on-one idea generation program.

It’s called the Idea Nugget Incubator program - and if you’d like to learn more about it, you can check that out here.

As always, if you have any questions, gimme a shout and let’s commiserate about it.