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The Outdoor Photography Experience

Lesson 26 of 29

Social Media Analytics to Utilize Social Media

Chris Burkard

The Outdoor Photography Experience

Chris Burkard

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Lesson Info

26. Social Media Analytics to Utilize Social Media

Lesson Info

Social Media Analytics to Utilize Social Media

I wanted to go over uh icon of square if you guys okay so this is a social media analytics program um that we that you can use it to you hasn't analytics are right it's like looking at your demographic and stuff so I called a square awesome eight updates every like you know a couple of days or whatever so it's pretty old a cz well but the beauty of icon of square and I'm just using mind for example is that you can go through here and you can if you go up to your statistics right you log in under your name bulb you don't know that you could go under your overview and you can look it okay optimization and the beauty of this programs you look oh here's all your best posting times like these big squares when you posted monday at eight p m this is a really good time to post and you know nine p m whatever and ah here's a here's like you know nine a m am right good times but so this is just showing you your posting habits and when are the most optimized times the post okay also media lifespan...

k how long until your media dies off well that means you don't really want to post something under you know for me it's under like five hour I don't post something back to back because you'd kill the life span of your previous image right um filter impact I usually knew you's no filter on ninety percent of the images so um tag impact that you know I don't really use many tags we can talk about that a little bit um you can go here to community and you can look at um your growth you know social media growth right scale and you can kind of check out you're okay your account growth there you could look that stuff followers friends you know people you've you know people you follow top five followings um you know other people ran with stuff like that it's pretty it's pretty interesting you can look it so much different stuff um let's go to engagement to growth history most liked images you know um it's always surprising me looking like your most liked photographs as well you know um when these were posted how they're posted um growth history so most commented media ever write different for me that had like amazing comments on their right on dh these air all your analytics of what you can look there's also ways to check out the age and and location of a lot of people that follow you as well so that is it's super crucial I think teo check out all of this stuff and know how it works now um facebook it's really simple too you can go to facebook and you go to um insides you go to your likes your reach your visits your post your videos you can look at every single post and see which ones are working for you know the stakes a little bit of time tio to load up on the white's taking so long but but anyway on here that the beauty is you khun scroll to your post and look at which ones had good engagement which ones didn't have that great engagement you can kind of base from there like that's what we try to do is we try to visit these these platforms and look at what things seem to be getting us the best engagement and we try to base the selection of images were doing off of that because we are using our demographic and the outreach and the kind of the the reciprocation communication that they're giving us to interact and to post work right so paige likes luke knew paige likes we can look it up here and go to our reach um our post reach okay organic organic posts right like looking okay which so july twenty fifth we had this much organic outreach on these posts so I can click on that and look at which post those word that did really well I can go under here I can look at you know there's there's so much information on these pages you guys I can't even I can't even stress that it's just a matter of kind of digging through it so looking through here I can go up and see alright so this one had a really really good engagement why did it let's see probably because it was a very easily digestible image meaning that the colors the framing right when I say easily digestible it comes back to the idea of timelessness right you're looking at a photograph your mind wants to be able to see and understand what it is like that okay if this photograph was black and white super busy and there's a bunch of trees and didn't really make sense it probably wouldn't be a very easily digestible image right so it's one of those things where you know you're looking for photographs anytime there's a you know look how little of engagement it's got anytime I'm promoting something with text on it it's never going to do is good okay um so one thing that is that is super important about images is do we call this a c t and call to action right so when you're looking at um when you're looking at photographs that you wantto wanna post want to promote it's always nice to have a call to action right so let me see here and find one um let's see here like this photo for example has like three hundred twenty in comments you know the very first thing is where's the last place you stood there completely blow your mind so when any time you ask people a question it's really cool to see you know their feedback anytime you ask them questions they're going to be responding more so than normal so a call to action is a really great way to get brand engagement right that's a really awesome thing to do you know this one two I think there might be um let's see if there's another one that has you know I this one too I ask people questions as well you know I asked them you know what they see in this photograph is eight hundred comments well it's because people are responding back right also images or people can tag their friends and be like this is a place we should camp this is place we should go think about images that provide opportunities for them to engage with other people not just you because you want them to be bringing other folks to your page right to see that so that's extremely valuable as well so remember called action super important right engaging people asking questions okay um the captions mind they vary from very very simple too long and personal right that's just the flow of how I do it it's sometimes it's more personal in depth comments sometimes it's you know a really simplistic kind of thing you know it just depends on what it is you know depends on the content so um you guys have questions on the analytics programs and and how is used yes did you change your strategy over time using social media totally I mean like I said I've looked ah lot at thes these posts and gone okay wow I'm really seeing what's working and what's not here you know and what you'll notice is like you know with these numbers and like okay well this one's getting really good engagement what is it about this well northern lights images they always seem to do pretty well you know and obviously I'm not just posting photos so I think they're going to do well but I'm trying to kind of frame my work based around that the images in the content that I feel like it's going to get good interaction good communication going right also because I I like and want to monetize these channels I want to be able to promote workshops on to build a remote you know books I want you all to promote you know companies and things that I'm doing and and and all for the fact coming back to you guys keep us in mind because it's super hard you know I'm the first person always recognized like every person is professional photographer who works in these channels has the you know has the ability to become a sell out pretty easily so for me this is why it's always important to have that message you know to inspire people to care about the planet to inspire people to go out and experience nature and this is why I do these things to invest that energy in that time because when I see one person writing to me oh man your photo inspired me to go out here that is all I care about that is the most payback you could ever get right and the amount of like incoming money we make for monetizing our channels is so little compared to the commercial work that we do it's just a little extra fun thing it's really more about generating print sales promoting things one thing I want to talk about really quickly is the ability to promote projects right I've been able to do quite a few books this is one of our latest ones to children's book but this is something that was purely promoted through kickstarter funded in a day okay through kickstarter I didn't do it through kickstarter because I needed the money from people to do the book I could have easily paid for that myself I wanted it to be a community based project I wanted to invite people along for the ride I wanted to give them the opportunity support something that I felt like I could be a fun and engaging projects this is why we did it that way right so social media for me has been away too sell and create products it's been away too make you know we've done a lot of films done film premieres and made books from trips that I've done so this is something that we did from for surfer magazine we did a trip to russia right and then after that we came back and we did a tour with that project we did a tour with this project you made a film and we sold it online and stuff so social media played a huge role in doing that so for me this is the coolest part and keep in mind like that thing that book was not a money making proposition it was something that I did because I wanted and I place a lot of emphasis in my life and my career on going out interacting with people and giving back with projects like that so that was fun these are just things that you do it kind of falls in that personal project space um I want to address really quick this idea of you had a question appealing to brands working with them how do you first thing you have to do is you have to have some what what can you offer them you know so what do you plan or intent you want to work with a brand via social media you wantto collaborate with them that's great I think that there's so many ways that we can really be working and getting are getting thes types of companies attention one of the great things about social media is that they're almost always tied to someone in the marketing department of some company you know so if you direct message somebody usually you're dealing with somebody directing the marking department right um I think it's a great kind of segway into your work because you write somebody you comment with somebody right they're going back to your page that you have a chance to show them exactly what you're all about your videos your photos your whole thing it's all right there they can have such a quick snapshot of what I mean I personally people people asking like oh where should have you working like you know just go to my instagram it's so much easier to view my work there you know my website's great and they're awesome content on there it's a cool experience right but and if shows my life you know my my my directing bits and my this not but but I love when people goto my social media they have a chance to see the variety of work because no where else are they going to see such a variety of work okay so working with brands make a list of the companies you wanna work with make sure that your work could actually appeal to them reach out to them you know figure out ways you could do something could you do a takeover with them could you submit some images that a company that you could submit images to to post you have you ever shot any other products have you shot worked that remotely pertains to what they're about if you haven't maybe not the best thing to approach them yet right maybe good to wait a little bit more right so we have more questions about this specific ones let's let's keep him going let's just you go on that did you have one start really quick uh do you like forced air it not for example have one picture just went to an army symmetry of iceland and you put it on instagram and facebook on whatever you have we're kind of keep it different if the same people may be following you so yeah usually my facebook is I'm making all the selections for facebook and I'm having an assistant post them for me now because we just it's just too much work to do it might my instagram on posting all myself on doing all that stuff myself usually my instagram is more current and stuff it's more like what's happening in the now you know and stuff facebook is usually pretty current when I'm on trips but when I'm not on trips you know it just kind of filtering back between stuff that we're promoting events we have going on it's a great way people want to find out what we have going on like that's right send him because like I have a workshop here I'm speaking at this thing I'm doing a talk here I'm you know selling a book this is the place to find to find out the most current stuff and you guys I can't stress enough one of the back in the day used to back blog's belongs used to be the thing right you go to someone's website they have a blonde you check it out if it's a brand coming to you and they want to check out this photographer the value of having a blogger was such an important thing it's the same thing now a social media more important than actually having it is being up to date right there's nothing worse than going to a block and having it be like not updated since ten years ago you know like it just doesn't look good they want to see that you're consistent they want to see that you actually care about these things and you curate them well you know that's really crucial good to use the same images on facebook instagram senator are they always different usually always different sometimes all post from facebook from instagram to twitter and tumbler usually I'm just posting through just because it's you know kind of keep it consistent but a lot of times my facebook content mainstream content is different and I always feel like facebook is just a lot easier place to post videos post longer form content post links you know instagrams really more like it's more about like if I'm gonna promote something I just want to have it be a quick place to send them somewhere else so you have to always be weary too these companies you know instagram facebook you know they don't want you to they don't want people to go to their page then go somewhere else that's why they don't provide links you know they want you to stay there in the app right in the experience so one thing that I found you know I don't know if any of you guys are familiar this but facebook used to use to build to get really good engaging on facebook for a long time that about a year and a half ago it kind of just dropped off they change some of their algorithms things switch little a bit well things are coming back around a little bit now and what I've found is that when you post videos on facebook they get incredible engagement I'm not I'm not posting them from something else but actually embedding them in facebook what they want these people to stay there in the app they don't want to be like oh here's a link to a video you know check this out they want you to stay in the app so it's really that's one great way to get engagement you know is don't re post your youtube video shared to facebook you know it's not going to exceed as far as if you're just to post it and hosted there right what are your thoughts on hashtag sees hashtags to promote your stuff did you early in your career how did you use hashtags are great I well I think that's a good thing to talk about hashtag hashtag hashtag so uh my hashtags what do I do when I write this comments I love when I have the ability just to keep it clean and just my location is simple my thing is simple but somewhere buried in this thing buried somewhere in these comments I don't know where it is I have a bunch of hashtags of brands that I work with not just random people that I want to feature but actually cos um and nature accounts and things like that that I actually enjoy working with and repost my work and we have a relationship I really never tag people if you see someone tagged on my page it's because I either know them or because I'm working with them or for them or it's a friend of mine or something like that it's never just random I'm never and I suggest you guys don't do that don't be like at toyota yusa just because you drive it to it it just looks weird okay just like our post never post your hash tags in your comment in your caption post them later there's no point to do it unless you physically want people to see those hashtags there's no point to do it because if you're putting them in your comments you just wait a couple right if you wait you know ah couple things and then you put them in your comments a little bit later right um if you put them there it it's all the same right so it doesn't actually make a difference it's still going to be it's still gonna be populated that hashtag okay I think it looks busy and kind of unclean and if I was like an art director and I was like well like at you know nature at selfie at whatever I don't know at throwback thursday I would just be like oh this is kind of like gross you know I think of it like a gallery and if I if I want to you know make things that are simple and then put my hash tags in here later I know that in a lot of these all these posters probably hashtags I have like a whole bunch of them you know maybe like at our planet daily and at this not that I love people to share my work I know on here you can't you can't see who's tagged my work or whose tag me in post there's a lot of brands will repost my work from that and I think they're great they're a great way to share content they're going to get featured by bigger accounts I just I think that like anything do it tastefully in tactfully okay um so what are you thoughts on branding your work like using your name which you obviously did versus having a company named terrible idea to have a company name yeah you should be known as you you shouldn't be re known as red dot photography or some like that who is that it's nobody you're an entity and you're a person and if you take your name out of the equation then you're just something else you know every photographer I know you know they have their company has their name even if they have a secondary company that's like a studio like camp for this and that they're still is that photographer's company name and his own entity I am an s corp crisper card studios right we are a full production studio that does video and directing and stills and yada yada yada it's still all under my name and it's still going to be known by that title now I just I feel like you're shooting yourself in the foot if you try to take your name out of the equation because that's the most important thing that you have right um I've just felt like that's a that's a you know going under an entity can kind of uh it might be great and like if I was in the surf world you know still and that's all I cared about where I was shooting skateboarding that's all I cared about might be fine to do that but that's not really beneficial in like the commercial space you know or another any other space I think because you want to be known as you now you share a name with some other random famous person I'm really sorry but that's just got a bummer sometimes so how do you keep track of what you've already posted out of that google drive full that's hard oh um what you usually know pretty well and I'm not afraid I've posted a similar photo to this before but I repose to this for a purpose I post it because I want to talk about tell people that today we're talking about night photography um a lot of this stuff to what I do is once it's been in that google drive I'll just move it from off season two folders and I'll be like oh move it tio posted folder or something like that or I'll just remember or I'll forget it all repost it's like it's like not the end of the world you know like I feel like like you look through here and you don't see anything that similar for you know unless someone scrolling through your feed like eighty weeks back which probably means they're creeper anyway I wouldn't really worry about it you know um and I think that for me like there's always variations like I posted this photo right here um which is a slight you know variation of of you know this image down here but very different right eh so in that case it's fine it's just a different format you know I think that the key is like I wouldn't really I wouldn't really worry or get too concerned with that you know the one thing it's a bummers and people aren't posting a ton and ninety percent of the post images or just photos they posted again that's always that doesn't look good for you only because if somebody else is coming there who might want to hire you like well can this person you know is are these just like luck of the draw images are they just getting lucky or they just created only in their own space like you know what like you want to see some variety there uhm ideally all that variety should still fall underneath your suit same creative style maybe one more question and then we'll need you want man cool do you have do you or have you ever paid for promotion on social media no I've er on facebook I've paid to promote some posts on lee when it's like a workshop or something that I want to really get it out there I'll put like fifty bucks behind it or something uh there's been times to where I've had brand that I've had to work for and do social post pay me and and they've wanted me to pay the most in post but never never paid accounts to post my images never done I've always been it's always been easier for me just to you know it doesn't matter you understand too like before I had a social media following I had a career very very successful and even if I didn't have one now I'd still have a really awesome career doing a ton of things and I had three books published and all these things is just ways that I'm using this now to further my career on instagram might be gone tomorrow so it doesn't really make a difference I think the key is setting yourself up for to be successful in any capacity so the beauty is if you want to work with some of these brands it doesn't really matter if you're promoting them there for money you yada yada yada could even just be like that you have a really good set of images a really good body of work that you'd want to get to them obviously in order to maybe build your content but being a talented photographer or having a body of work that that makes sense that's the greatest way I mean I was able to give a ted talk this last year and the way that I got that ted talk was not from social media it was from doing creating a video from when I went to norway right and uh in terms of branding yourself this is another really important way you khun brand yourself I've always been this big proponent of doing content like creating identity rials and things like that because the reality is if someone was to come to my website and uh and see and want to know more about me right um well I have this video here I have this ted video right here but I also have this arctic surfing video that used to play the school play before that and this video was basically a a piece of content we created with this company smugmug and it was all about surfing in norway right and so this gave people are really good perception of who I was is a person right and this is just another form of social media content like this you know I think that there's a couple versions of almost a million views you know so it's content like this that was able to see it out and get mohr interaction engagement I think just thinking it but in terms of instagram is really the least effective thing you could do um this is another great way to brand yourself as well as like having a logo having a personality but also creating content like this that could be pushed out into the world and give people representation of who you are as a person right because if the job comes down to you and this other person and they're like oh this person is a cool video I wanna watch this wow he looks like a normal human being that I would interact with well you know your problem get hired over some other person who shoots equally as good images but they don't really know what they're like more questions more personal question but why the bear for your logo um I don't know I just felt like it was you know growing up in california uh born and bred and I love it and I just felt like it was right I don't know spirit animal yeah a vision more based on its ground but do you find that social media and these um media's influence you and wants to create more yeah I do I do actually I find that I get motivated by social media a lot of time like wow like this siri's like like for example you know it's really cool for me it's very validating um to see images like my glacial rivers siri's per totally personal project that I've just invested all my money into to shoot has had a lot of amazing feedback and people have been really responsive to it you know that's that's been super cool for me to see and have these types of comments you know because that's something I've been working on for years you know and eventually I'll put it into a book and we'll probably sell it will be great and be awesome but it's for me it's like this is just purely personal there's no other purpose so it's been really motivating for me to like push something like that out there you know shooting aerial photography is something I just started doing the last school years and it's something that's been really significant to me but be able to put the images out there get a lot of positive feedback like wow like this some people respond to really well that's been super validating and that type of validation goes really well for photographers because we're used to working under who editors and people constantly telling us and giving us our opinion teachers editors people who are saying oh this is good this is bad change this ball block jerks like me critiquing your portfolio and saying this is bad this is you know whatever and so when you go and you put it out in front of the world and you have this amazing response that's huge you know that's amazing and that's really a great way to validate your work and know if you feel like you're on the right track or not you know

Class Description

Short on time? This class is available HERE as a Fast Class, exclusively for Creator Pass subscribers.

Shooting outdoor photography is a powerful way to commune with nature and experience the fullness of life. Learn how to train your eye on incredible shots and convey the energy of the outdoors in The Outdoor Photography Experience with Chris Burkard.

Chris’s beloved images of life on the world’s coasts are alive with action and emotion. In this class, he’ll share the tools and techniques he uses to capture the photographs he sells to magazines, brands, collectors, and publishers.

You’ll learn about his shooting style and the gear he brings on his global adventures. He’ll also talk about the business of photography and share tips on marketing and selling your work.

If you want insights on how to create rich, dramatic images that let you enjoy more time outdoors, don’t miss your chance to learn from Chris Burkard in The Outdoor Photography Experience.



I've been staying up all night to watch the live broadcast. As somebody else here mentioned (latsok), it's emphasizes on the non-technical aspects (emotion, engagement, colour and composition) rather than the technical stuff like shutter speeds, iso and f-stop. Although I can use some help in both, the technical aspects are not only camera specific but fairly objective as well. The non-technical aspects however are something much harder to grasp. Getting help in this by no-one less than Chris Burkard is just amazing. I bought this class so I can re-watch certain parts of the broadcast again whenever I need it. But also to show my appreciation for Chris Burkard and Creative Live for providing this great online course!

Matt Redfern

This class was packed full of amazing knowledge. I really enjoyed the topics covered and have found it super helpful for my work. I have had so many takeaways ranging anywhere from how to put myself out there, finding my style that stands out, practical applications, etc. I would highly recommend this class to everyone interested in photography! Big thanks to Chris and CreativeLive for putting this together.


This was a phenomenal class. I highly recommend it to anyone. Chris is not only a sensational photographer, he is a wonderful teacher. He provides such detailed information and freely gives same to his students. He is really really available and eager to answer questions and so easy to understand. I learned so much and I was thrilled. I am very very grateful I found this particular class.