Ok, let’s cut to the chase. How do you get a social media following? In a word; engage. That is the name of the game. As social media fanatics, Ariel and I (Mathew) both tend to spend a lot of time looking at social media feeds, and engaging with others. We do so with a frequency of at least daily, if not more. This is vital to growing any social media following and must never be overlooked. Simply posting and hoping that other users will find your content amongst all the other posts – propelling it to a status of viral is as likely as winning the lottery.
Social users are growing exponentially and this channel can’t be overlooked. As professional photographers we are very busy, editing photos, meeting with clients, filing contracts, scheduling shoots and – if time allows – taking more and more pictures. How on earth can there be time for social media? We completely understand first hand, but social is so important that it can’t be ignored. The beauty of social media is its portability and with the convenience of apps you can engage with people while waiting in lines, on subways, etc via your smartphone.
So who to engage with? People like you! People of common interests will often engage back in some way. We spend time curating lists of users that like camera gear, run photo studios or have some other common tie that would make a good social match for us and our content. By doing this, the likelihood of the other users liking back or sharing content greatly increases. It also happens to actually be what we are interested in, as a wedding photographer we follow lots of other wedding photographers and it makes liking our streams very enjoyable!
All the popular social media platforms have a similar system for engaging with other users. While the terms from platform to platform my change (like vs favorite) the functions are the same. First off is the favorite/like/star/etc, which typically indicates that a user enjoys a single post another user posted. Secondly, the share/retweet/etc which equates to a user liking another’s post enough that they choose to share the post with their followers. Which brings up the third and most powerful engagement tool the follow, which simply means you subscribe to all of another user’s future posts.
Utilizing these three methods can build your following dramatically if used correctly. Simply signing up for accounts at all your favorite social media channels and engaging in mass will not build you a following fast. In fact it will more likely get your account in trouble or closed. A better method is to seek out the similar users that like things you like and try to make a real connection with them, just as you hope they will do with you and your content. Comment on how you like their photo or re-share it to your followers if you think it’s a good fit for your readers. The old adage “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” really works in social media.
How To Find The Right Audience
Well since you are reading our blog, the chances are good that you are a photographer, or more specifically a wedding or portrait photographer. If this is the case you will most likely want to cultivate a few different audiences that help you to achieve your goals. We work to attain followers who are fans of our content who will, in turn, help to make our articles popular. This has made our online presence larger and serendipitous benefits such as backlinks and blog features are appreciated. While these happenings do boost our egos, they generally won’t help us book clients or pay the bills.
Now you have a large pool of users to investigate that will likely be on the same topic as you! Or if you would like more instant gratification and are looking to improve your wedding photography niche on Twitter see our curated wedding photographer list. We have literally spent hundreds of hours searching for other photographers with similar businesses and built this custom list of the best wedding photographers in the world to interact with. Our goal was to build a community of like minded business operators that we could pool our efforts and experiences with, not just the most popular, but all the serious photogs of the world that want to engage with a community. This has worked quite well and we invite you to subscribe or if you would like to be added, tweet your website url to Mathew for inclusion.
What does every bride and groom do within a few days of getting engaged? That’s right, they change their Facebook relationship status letting the world know their happy news! We use the engaged relationship status to find ideal customers that are obviously in need of wedding photography services soon. We can also target within a certain proximity, ensuring that we book jobs in locations that our studio can service regularly.
We utilize the G+ Page for our business and it improves our presence on Google local search results, as well as our ranking in Google Maps. These are obviously great ways to reach customers. We also have profile pages for both Mathew & Ariel that we use to post and interact with other users. We have found the best way to improve visibility on G+ is to post photo’s in communities. Google+ has tons of different groups to help users find like minded people to engage with. Post in these photo communities regularly and you can gain followers and views to both your G+ profile and/or page.