Developing a Social Media Strategy for Photographers

 

Lesson Info

Taking Advantage of Momentum

- [Colby] So, taking advantage of momentum. This is something that I feel a lot of people fail to truly grasp in terms of helping leverage their social media successes to help you in other places that you are struggling with. And this is something that I found that people like Chris Burkard and a handful of other people have done exceptionally well at. So what happens is that you push something out there and something goes trending. You start getting a lot of followers for whatever reason. Stuff that you're doing is great on Instagram. Things are growing a little bit. Engagement's growing. Let's say at the same time you're kind of struggling with Instagram, struggling with Snapchat or whatever it is. The idea is that you're taking the momentum, the movement that you've generated from the positive choices that you've made in terms of one of your social media platforms, and you are willing to take those followers and help you build up your other followers. Because you understand that the...

y're engaged with you on one platform, a lot of the time they're on multiple platforms. So, why not bring them to other places? And so, this is really what Ben does. As we talked about before with the stuff that he did recently with the mermaid, Benjamin Von Wong created this incredible advocacy program. And what he does is he works to connect and cross-promote all the stuff that he does in terms of the content he produces, as well as a social media platforms, to help raise up the awareness for any sort of these high-concept campaigns that he works on. And so, the first idea is the idea of cross linking. Now, cross linking is essentially the idea, as we've talked about before, where you're posting something to your Facebook business page or your Instagram account. And you want that specific post to have more engagement and reach. And so, what you're shooting for when you're posting is essentially that your followers are liking and commenting and sharing. And sometimes, you might find that it's just not happening as much as you want. So, one of the ways that you can go about it is you can sit there and go to your Facebook business page. And then, you can sit there and try to share your own posts, and you share it to your Facebook personal profile. And this is what I'm doing right here. "Check out my latest image over on Colby Brown Photography." I tag myself, send it over. Now, when I send it over, I'm of course going to get different types of engagement. Different people follow me on my personal profile than I do on my Facebook business page. But a lot of people are going to click through that link and then they're going to engage on this original image. So, that's going to further increase the engagement. And that's going to spur other engagement. Other people are going to see that their friends liked this post. It's an opportunity for you to spur a little bit of momentum on your own. It's not something I recommend, again, doing something right away. I personally recommend that you let the organic reach, for the most part, at least run somewhat of its course on your pages before you do that. Because, again, you don't want the people that are following your personal profile to also see the same content that you just shared on your business page, at least right away. So, spreading out a little bit gives you a little bit more of that buffer zone. But it's a great way to help boost things up, especially when you're in a pinch and you feel that you have a little bit of momentum with one of your photos, but you want a little bit more, more engagement, more conversation. That will help you. More people will see it. You'll get more followers. You'll get more engagements. It helps. The next one is cross promotion. So, cross promotion is actually the active process of sitting there and saying, "I have a lot of engagement. I have a lot of success on this platform, and I'm going to take the followers that I have developed or that I have cultivated, and I'm going to push them somewhere else." So here, this is me sharing out my wonderful photo of me in Snapchat on my Facebook personal profile, and saying, "Hey, anyone else on Snapchat? Here's a link to where I'm at." This is that unique code that I talked about, based on the random distribution of these dots. That's how it determines... It's like a mapping system of who that is. So, if you guys held up your phone right now, you could literally put it up to that screen, and you could be directly sent to my Snapchat, which is kind of cool. But a lot of people don't think about that. They don't think about them momentum they have to kind of push other places. And so, people like Chris Burkard that really started getting a lot of momentum on Instagram, he did an exceptional job of taking that following. And what he would do, is he would build it onto his satellite platforms. And so, he would take his Instagram, and one week he'd be posting out and say, "Hey, new content over on Tumblr." Post it out there, and for a week he'd be pushing out there. And then, his Tumblr would start to grow, get momentum. And the next week maybe he would take his Instagram and push back to his Facebook business page. He got most of his momentum based on Instagram growing because large hubs and large pages were helping him grow by sharing his awesome content. And he already had such an engaged audience. And then, he took all that energy, all that value, all that engagement, and he started putting it into places so that he could extend the value of what he was doing. So when you guys are out there and you're finding a bit of success with a page or something like that, feel free to plug yourself in other avenues. Don't do it all the time, but every once in a while, it's healthy. It's good. You're going to help spur a little bit more engagement. You're going to help bring some of your followers to a different place, that helps their brand value for you, their trust, their loyalty of what you're doing, and ultimately allows you to help increase a little bit of engagement, both on a single post, as well as spread the love around a little bit in terms of increasing your audience across the board. And then, another great way to do that, coming back to giveaways and sweepstakes, is essentially the idea that you're tying in a sweepstakes or a giveaway on one platform to help out another. So, let's say you have a large following on Facebook, but you want your Instagram to get the benefit of it. So, you could sit there and do a post, and sit there and say, "Hey, doing this giveaway." This is Benjamin Von Wong, gave away this lens around Christmastime, and he had a little link to where he needed to go with all the information, tying in a couple different social platforms. "I'm going to give away a couple $1,000 camera. I'm going to give away whatever, a free portrait session." Those are great. Give away things that don't cost you money. And then, sit there and take that and help it build you other places. You're incentivizing people to sit there and say, "Hey, I'm following you on Facebook, but I really kind of want this lens. So maybe, I also need to follow you on Instagram." It's a good way to do it. It's a good way to use marketing, it's a good way to leverage content. It's a good way to help promote engagement across the board for everything that you're doing. - [Man] We got actually a few questions that were really similar to this, and they all revolve around hiring a social media manager or a company to do that for the people that are super busy and all their time's taken up running their business and they do want to have social channels and do that really well at a high level. What do you recommend for that? I know some people like Chris still are pretty... I mean, I saw him posting his stuff, so he's super hands-on. - He's super hands-on. Now, he helps a little bit. Obviously, he can't be everywhere all the time. But, no, again, it comes down to time valuation, time prioritization. Now, social media obviously is important for most of us. That's why you guys are here. That's why you guys are watching right now. But for me personally, I think if you go that route, which is okay, that you just need to make sure that whatever you do still has some of that personal flair. You need to be very hands-on in helping work with whatever place, whatever service or company that you hire. Make sure that you still have that kind of personal identity and, when you can, to figure out ways to make sure that you or, at the bare minimum, your account is back in and engaging as much as you can especially while you're trying to build. So, again, for Chris, he has millions of followers, so he doesn't have that ability to do that all the time. And so, sometimes, he's jumping in and engaging himself, and other times it's other people helping out as well. So, yes, I think it's a positive thing to do. But I do think that you just need to be careful about it because for me, again, the benefit, from what I see from social media for the most part, is that personal connection. And if someone else is doing it, it's like, where's the personal connection to your images if you're hiring other people to edit them? That type of worry, it can be mitigated, but it needs to be known that it can creep up. - Is there a risk of Facebook or Instagram or some of the social platforms shutting your account down or deleting it if you use certain third-party scheduling or management suites? No. They will not shut you down. Now, there has been some statistics historically. I think some of it's changed, where Facebook itself was essentially limiting some third-party services, in terms of the reach that you were getting because they knew content was coming from places. I used to see that especially more so with blogs, where you had blogs that had plugins that would automatically send to places like Facebook or Twitter or things like that. And what Facebook was doing was sitting there and saying, "Oh it's coming from someplace that's outside Facebook, so I might not want to do that." Again, the best place to do it, specifically with Facebook, is going to be Facebook scheduling. But some of these third-party platforms, I have personally found quite a bit of success using things like Buffer and Hootsuite and things to help have an overarching, larger social media strategy in terms of content distribution across the board. - Awesome. Do you ever repost something that didn't get the engagement you may have thought that it deserved, like delete it, repost it a month later, or something like that? - Yeah. Well, I think it's more so the idea. Well, first up, I try not to delete anything. I think things have value up there. That being said, I understand the idea that you want people to see your brand, see the content you're producing and the engagement that you're getting as a positive thing. So, if you sit there and you're sharing out tons of stuff and you're getting lots of engagement, you share one thing that just dies flat, then I can understand then the desire to delete it. And what I would do is I sit there, wouldn't go back and do the same thing. I would go back and take that content and try to repurpose it. So how can I change them? I change the time of day I posted them. I change the words that I use. I'm going to change... Maybe I'll make it a different type of call to action. But I think repurposing content, regardless if it's successful or not, is required because there's just not enough time in a day to... Again, if you think about posting twice a day to Facebook, if you're thinking about posting just your own content, you're talking about over 700 different, unique things that you need to create every single year. That's a lot for a lot of people. So, using that to offset with other types of content again, repurposing that stuff, I think, is awesome. - [Woman] With regards to those of us that are just starting out on the social platforms, if we don't have the content to post on a daily basis, would it make more sense for us to just maybe every other day or just three times a week, maintaining the quality of the content versus every day trying to find filler? - Are we talking about original content... - Yes. ...or just content in general? - If it's original content, absolutely. Original content that you are creating yourself, what I'd recommend is working on a schedule that works for you. Just have the filler stuff, the other things that are related. So, I would still recommend having a post a day. Just it doesn't have to be yours. So, post the link to something that's tied to it. Post just a comment, just jump in and sit there and say, "How's everyone doing? Where's everyone from?" Call to actions, just text, or other links or other content, things you find viable. I would recommend still maintaining that consistency in trying to get that engagement, but I wouldn't fixate or focus too much on that. I don't recommend that for the one post a day, you don't need seven original post every week because, again, that goes against the idea that other people want more types of information. So, for me and you, we were talking earlier about the idea of the stuff that you're doing, like some of the photojournalism style. So share some of those original images throughout the week, and then, in between, I'm sure there's content tied to some of that stuff. "Remember that story I posted yesterday? Here's a great link with some more information." Done. - Okay. - Post it out there. Have some of that stuff tied into, but definitely fill your stuff around. And you should do that regardless if you have the content or not. I'd recommend filling stuff in there every once in a while and throwing out URL links and other types of information that might be relevant. Reshare other people's pages' post and stuff like that. All of it has value. All of it is good engagement. The original is going to have the most value to you, but you just can't be expected to create that stuff all the time, especially when you're starting out. - Thank you. - Absolutely.

There are no shortages of online networks for photographers to share their images, but which platforms are best for you and how do you utilize them to grow your photography? Sony Artisan Colby Brown will walk you through the foundations of social media and why it’s so important for your brand as a photographer. He’ll show you how to define what you want out of your online experience and how to maximize your time on each of the major networks. 

Colby will discuss:
  • What each of the major social networks are and what they’re best utilized for
  • Tips for growing an audience or followers
  • What networks to use to achieve your goals as a photographer 
  • Tricks to breaking down the different network algorithms to maximize your engagement
  • Develop a social media strategy to build your brand as a photographer
No matter your genre of photography, be it travel, wedding, or pet photography, social media has the power to grow your audience, business, and skills. Learn tips and tricks on where and how to invest your time using these free online marketing tools.


Hoping to go beyond growing your following and learn how to grow your business using these networks? Check Out Colby's other course: Monetizing your Social Media Presence for Landscape Photographers

 
 
 
 

Reviews

  • This course is designed to help you develop a Social Media strategy if you are Photographer. I am a professional photographer with over 37 years of experience and although I know how to use Facebook and Instagram I didn't really understand how to use them to achieve business and personal goals. I started watching this course about 2 months ago and have just finished it due to work commitments. However I have put into practice his advice as I learnt new understanding and my following has grown rapidly. Also my work load and quality of assignment has increased dramatically too. It takes some brain rewiring to understand how social media has taken the place of many traditional media streams but Colby does an excellent job of painting a picture that helps hugely. The best thing about Colby's strategy is that it is real life, honest and something I feel I can personally and ethically live with happily. I happily endorse this course and recommend it.
  • I was very lucky to be in the audience for this class. Colby is an incredible instructor - he has the rare combination of being successful, knowledgeable and talented, but at the same time down to earth, approachable and genuinely willing to help others succeed. The content presented is actionable - I have so many ideas of things that I can do right now that can help my online presence! I can't wait to get started!
  • I learned a few things I never knew...especially the whole inside scoop on LinkedIn....who knew??? Easy to listen to....a lot of deflection to later answers to questions...which would have made a director allow for less...why ask if you cant answer just then....and he says every question is a "great question" but it clearly isn't in a few cases....so credibility goes down...I understand positive enforcement for the millennials...but every question is not great. otherwise easy to follow and straightforward....