Quick question about Animoto and sharing to Facebook. If you're sharing through Animoto to Facebook, is that considered an organic share or not?
No, so when I go into Animoto, I download the video and then upload it right to Facebook. And you could upload it straight through buffer, but you will see a little bit better results if you just do it right through their video app. It's not necessarily as bad as say uploading it to YouTube and then having that YouTube video shared. That's a little bit different and that's a little bit not as good. By the way, I actually, that's a good reminder, I didn't mention that. When you're making these videos, put them all on YouTube. 'Cause what's the largest, second largest search engine? YouTube, put all these videos on YouTube. I've had clients find me on YouTube because of videos on YouTube like this. One other thing I didn't mention about video, did you notice anything about some of those videos? Some of them were long, and some of them were squ...
are. If your intention is to put them on social media, that's your primary goal, of these, make them square. Because they take up more real estate in a vertical feed. So they take up more space and they're more likely to be noticed, stopped, and watched when you're doing a square video. With Animoto, sometimes, I will make two of the exact same video, one is square, and one is landscape. So then I have both, 'cause I do like landscape better, as photographers, right? The square is kinda like, you cringe, unless you know, you're going back to daguerreotypes and you're used to square format. But you can do both and that way you have one maybe for your website you embed in there, and one that you intend on sharing on social media. So, good, sorry for the last minute tangent there, always teachable moments. What other question do you guys have?
When you're sending out your automated emails, are they, when you have your videos uploaded on there, are they embedded in your template and do they run like a YouTube video does, like, you just click it, or does it automatically start playing when they open up their email, kind of?
That is a wonderful question, thank you for asking that. So when you send your videos in an email, you don't wanna actually put it in the email. Because a lot of spam filters, that'll just go right to there, or if you know, they don't have enough space in there, you know, it'll just bounce back to you. So what I do, is I take a screenshot of the video with a play button, and I put it on YouTube, all those videos are on YouTube. And then I send the JPEG in the email and the JPEG is clickable, when they click on it, it brings up the YouTube video. So that's a really good question on how to do that. Plus you don't wanna hog up your own email, right? With a bazillion videos that you're sending out everywhere, so great one. Any questions that we have, go ahead.
Yes, so I know it might be different for each photographer's personality, but do you follow all of your clients on social media, particularly Instagram?
That's a really good question, so I think you should follow all of your clients. Because then you can message them through there. I have some clients that don't respond to my emails so I'll message them and I'll talk to them, or I'll get a faster response through Instagram, so I'll just talk to them on Instagram. So I recommend following all of your clients, I mean, why not, right? I like to. One thing I need to get better at is asking all of my clients, 'cause sometimes I'll follow them but it's by default because I noticed they followed me, or I noticed they commented on something. I need to put it into my workflow where I ask them for their Instagram handle right up front, and then I intentionally go and follow them right after. Go ahead.
Going back earlier, in terms of engagement on social media with clients or with other vendors, it's a time consuming operation. Do you have any recommendations on it, like, sit an hour a week, sit an hour a day, anything along those lines?
So with social media, definitely setting up times for yourself is a good idea. Because if you don't set up times for yourself, one, you might not get time, but two, if there's no end time, you fall down that social media black hole and you never leave, right? So setting times, if you're gonna do it yourself, setting times, goals, that's a great idea. Personally, I recommend hiring somebody else for it too. So I do hire a company that will interact, and they will find accounts for me to follow. And I do recommend doing that, I do have a virtual assistant that does my posting and puts my hashtags together. That's not to say that you shouldn't know how to do it, though, by the way, because you should know how to do it, it's your business, you should be deciding how it's run. What hashtags are going on there, how are you tagging people how are you communicating with them? For me, I personally communicate with everyone who comments. So if you guys go leave a comment, or you send me a message, I'm the one who's going to write back, and that can be time consuming, so for me, that's what I do when I have like, little blips of extra time. I don't know, I need a computer break or something and I go ahead to my phone and do it. But I try not to get consumed in it. It's easy to. (laughs) Go ahead.
Do you find it confusing when you have clients that message you on Instagram and then another person that messages you through your business Facebook page, and then another one through your personal Facebook page, and then, I always try to get everyone to go back to email because I find it really hard to keep track of information when it's like, all over the place. Do you have a system for that, or?
That's such a struggle right now. Because really, the rule is, in my opinion, that you should communicate with people in the way that they communicated with you. If they email, you don't pick up the phone and call them, if they called you, you don't send them an email. So it goes across social platforms as well. Thankfully, Instagram has put together almost like, a tagging system, it's within Facebook, I'm sorry, Facebook Messenger, so if you go to your Facebook pages, it now has the comments on Instagram and Facebook, as well as the Facebook messages there, where you can like, mark them as read, you can mark as done, and it's a little bit easier to do that, and then now within messenger, there's even tagging of some kind. It's not there with Instagram messaging, but I will communicate them with however they want to be communicated with. However, if I'm communicating with them in Instagram, let's just say, I'm gonna take a screenshot of that, and then put it in 17hats. So I have a record of that all in one spot. Because you should, you don't want her to be like, "Oh, no, but you told me XYZ." And you're like, "No, I didn't, but "where on earth did I tell you that?" So now it's all on one spot. So communicate with them in the manner that they wanna be communicated with, but keep track of it all in one spot. Go ahead.
So I'm all about dealing the business, and making it to where we have a freedom, a lifestyle freedom. Hardest part as a creative and a business owner is to delegate and allocate these jobs to other people, is there anything that you've given out to someone else that you then taken back on your own hat?
That is a constant struggle. So I will not delegate something until I'm ready to, financially, and emotionally. And if I've decided to teach it to them and they don't get it, that's not their fault, that's mine. Either I made a mistake in how I taught them, or I made a mistake in who I hired. So if you're gonna teach someone, there's a four step teaching method. This is where that teaching degree comes in handy that I have. (laughs) So, when you teach somebody something, first thing you do is demonstrate it. You demo it, they watch, they do nothing. Then, you have them do it while you're there walking them through the steps. So you tell them, okay, now do this, now do this, now do this, but they're the ones actually doing it. Then step three, if for them to do it in front of you, you watch them, but you say nothing. You say nothing at all, and then at the end, you can answer questions or correct certain things. And then the fourth step in teaching for them to actually master the concept is they have to teach somebody else. So that's your four step for training that'll hopefully help, but please do not take back things willingly. It's so easy to be like, "Oh, I can do this right now "in three minutes rather than take 30 to teach this person." Yes, but big picture, 30 minutes now, gives you an infinite amount of time later, infinite amount. Cool, any other questions, or?
I actually had one more, you said you don't give out cards when you're at people's weddings, what if somebody, how do you handle that tactfully? So that you can't, if somebody does ask for a card, do you give them a card or?
So I was saying, second shooters, you don't, they don't give out their cards. So, but that's actually a good marketing tactic. So I do have business cards on hand, but if I do an engagement session with them, I create a business card with their engagement picture on it. So I have basically personalized wedding cards that I give out and I do either with the bride's permission, put them on tables, or put them near the same day edit. One side has their picture, the other side has my info, and the link to go look at the wedding photos. But then also throughout the day, if I get asked for business cards, I get to give them one that has the couple they know on it. The best, Millards, print them right there, really easy.
Can't remember what it was, oh, going back to your same day slideshow, do you do any sort of branding with that? Leave cards out with it, have it within the show? Or is it just showing and people are gonna assume that you made it?
No, I never let anyone assume anything. (laughs) So, I use BlogStomp to collage the pictures together a little bit. Or just to put my logo on the bottom of them. So when it's playing one after the other, it has my logo at all times, and it also has a couple cards in front of it. Either the custom ones that I made, or if I didn't do an engagement session, just generic. Generic ones, definitely have a way to call action. Yes.
So, this might go into a secret or what not, when you're sending out tips and tricks, or creating lead generations, are you using the same content or talking points throughout that workflow? And if you don't, would you judge someone that does?
No, I am not reinventing the wheel every time. And typically with weddings, I don't get repeat clients. So I am sending out the same thing to everyone, I just write that email once. And usually what I'm doing, I'm writing the email, but then I'm sending them to my Instagram, or I'm sending them to a blog. I want them to read the email, I want them to get the tip, but then I also want them interacting on Instagram, I want them interacting on my blog and building SCO or whatever it is, yes.
So it's okay for them to maybe see the same content twice within their process with you?
I don't know that they would see the content twice, maybe they would if they went through my blog and noticed that tips thing, but they, I mean, they're not getting the same email twice. They may have gotten the same email that their friend got last year, but that's not a huge deal. That's almost fulfilling an expectation actually. (laughs)