Nov 102015
 
Sometimes you just want to undo your mistakes

I’ve been on social media platforms for a decade now. Building my LinkedIn profile, updating my Facebook pages, creating photos for Instagram and tweeting a couple tweets a week.

We all are. Twitter’s stream is even called a firehose, simply because there are so many tweets streaming through that social media channel, that no one can keep up with reading what everybody has to say.

The big question

Here’s the big question for a visual content creator: “How do you get your voice heard?” or rather “how do you get your vision seen?” 

In a flood of grumpy cats, internet memes and yesterday’s late show’s video clips – it seems impossible for your visual content to compete.

You’re doing it all wrong

We talk about our gear: do you shoot Nikon or Canon; how do you backup your files; how to create a focus stack or the perfect HDR shot or the favorite piece of gear, or…

STOP IT!

Can I tell you a secret? You’re clients don’t care. They couldn’t care less if you found the perfect RAW processing software (which is Capture One, in case you were wondering).  They aren’t looking for your explanation of what company provides the best services to run your website (I’m partial to Photoshelter myself). Do you really think you got hired, because of that blog post explaining how to get Facebook to take down a copyrighted image or how to power a GoPro for a couple of days for a long time-lapse?

For almost 10 years I’ve been doing just that – and be honest, so have you. We’re targeting the wrong audience – we’re writing about what we want to learn as photographers.  We’re writing for photographers.

I like you guys, but not one of you is going to hire me because of what I’m blogging, tweeting, Facebooking and Instagramming about.  And the people who are looking for a photographer or video creator?  They’re not going to hire me because of those posts, either.

The secret to doing social media the right way

Use social media to put your potential client in a front row seat:

  • Take your client with you. Periscope when you’re scouting a place.
  • Blog about your recent assignment, but talk about how you solved a problem, you’re client is facing.
  • Instagram some behind the scenes shots or have your assistant create a quick behind the scenes video to post on your Facebook page.
  • Tweet a link to your latest customer recommendation on LinkedIn.
  • Share a testimonial video of one of you’re clients recounting why they loved working with you.

You don’t have to stop creating content that other photographers are interested in. It’s great to have Google see you as the expert when it comes to talking about photography, video and marketing, but please spend just as much time on creating content that your potential clients are scouring the web for when they’re looking for the next creative to shoot for them.

Social Media is a powerful platform, but it requires you to know the interests of your audience and what they are willing to spend their time on as well as where that audience is.

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[This article first appeared on “Strictly Business“, the blog for the American Society for Media Photographers.]

What do you think?