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Social Media Analytics


Background to my Question: I have a client, they just won best social media in their industry in Canada, and they recently started using my images across their social media platforms coming into this new year. I want to reach out to more clients in this industry and I’d like to use this client as a case study in my deck… specifically I want to strengthen the case with their social media analytics (assuming the analytics are favourable).

Question: Is it couth to ask a client for their social media analytics in relation to the posts using my imagery in order to beef up my marketing decks?


The analytic results of your images proving the compelling quality of your photo skills are a respectable request. As much as it’s OK to ask, I don’t know many companies that would have that information handy or be allowed to give it out. The way to combat this dependence on the client is to research their social media followers, amount of engagement, and the success of their business before and after. You can include this data in your treatments as you’d be speaking your potential new client’s language.

Creative Ways to Engage Your Audience


What are some creative ways to engage my audience?


Creative ways to engage your audience are about CONSISTENCY. Becoming a daily household name on IG Stories is one of the smartest ways to track your views and have a daily presence. Our goal is to have a client think of us when a job comes across their desk. The strongest branding method is familiarity which can come from enough content giving your audience a sense of who you are. Photographer Caleb Kuhl had his largest following by sharing his office barn and chicken coup building process. Share your recognizable voice to be a part of your audience’s regular routine. 

Highlights on IG

Highlights on IG are that fast direct route for clients to know what they can hire you for. Make this easy for them to know what you do!

To make the most out of your instagram you must use highlights. You knew I was going to say that. These are your categories or your projects like on your website, because instagram is like your second website. You must use highlights. Make it quick and fast for clients who have 2 seconds to figure out who you are and what you do and to make you find-able if they’re looking for sports or like athleisure or still life for beverages, something like that. Make it really fast because you don’t want them to have to scroll down your whole feed. They could do that if they have time but if they don’t, highlights make it very quick for them to find you.

DMing a Company on IG


I did some spec work, shared it on Instagram, and tagged the company. They then messaged me and said that they loved the work and then sent me a link with their TOC, asking for full usage in perpetuity. This has happened 3x already. I don’t seem to be getting anywhere by saying, “I would love to chat about licensing and future work.” Any advice?


When we DM a company on IG, we must be aware that we are dealing with social media employees responding with automatic scripted terms, not knowing about copyright ownership or usage rights. The real pursuit is to find the people at these companies who do know our business. It takes digging around to find the right contact, so it’s a time zapper, but worth it for the suitable companies for your images.

Printed Promos vs Online Sources


So…printed promos being kinda a guessing game these days as most are working from home, are you finding LinkedIn being the go-to source to keep up with folks to market to? The list services have always been so hit/miss for emails and so many people have transitioned to new gigs. Just curious where and how folks are staying on top of their lists.


Divide your list into two parts – the mass list like on Agency Access (feels like a fishing net) and then the HOT clients you want to work with or who already know your name. The HOT list will need you to get a bit more creative in building relationships to stay in touch. This relationship-building marketing can be through interests you share, IG dm’s, commenting, and relating to people in ways that take your marketing to that next “human” level.

Following Up on “Clicks”


What’s the best follow-up with opened/clicks after sending email promos?


A clicked on email promo gives us a goldmine of valuable information. The gift is that now you know who is interested in your work. Take this knowledge further by adding anyone at their company who is not already on your list and research other companies with similar vibes to get them on your promo list. Follow up with your newly “warm” names who know you in IG with Feeds/DM’s/Stories comments. Finding their IG handles is not always easy; LinkedIn and their personal websites can help. Now it’s time to engage!

Marketing Tips You May Not Be Doing


  1. DM on IG Stories is the best way to start a true 2-way conversation.
  2. Quick and easy ONE-SHEETS are like having a Leave Behind email promo for each client.
  3. PROJECTS PAGE reassuring clients showing a series of images with the same look + feel.
  4. Maintain your DATABASE with your dream list and those who already know our name. Cheers!
  5. CLICKED LIST of your promos is that valuable feedback that is so hard to get.

Social Media + Production


As the generation on social media becomes the major buying power, is the way of high production and big campaign work going away?


High production and big campaign work have gone down, but mostly it’s changed into more content per photoshoot. High-quality production still happens, but the number of shots has increased because they need more social media assets. The more assets you can deliver through production ideas, equipment versatility, and motion, the better. They need more content, so find ways that you will be the one to give them even more than they are asking for.

Copyright Q&A


This whole topic seems to be a little contentious, but I’ve seen more lately suggesting companies/brands should not repost images/videos without permission from the artist. This makes sense to me as they are using it commercially without permission, compensation, or, at the very least, photo credit. My question is how would you suggest handling it?


You are the photographer, so you own the copyright. This is your responsibility to contact whoever used your image without your permission to request to be paid. Unfortunately, IG’s terms don’t support photographers, so I believe if this went to court, you’d lose. It’s important to contact them, let them know you are the photographer and find out where they are using your image. At the very least, you should have your name be tagged to get some PR out of it. I find that clients often don’t know any better and don’t realize they need your permission, so they are open to negotiation.

Inside View: LA Art Director on What They Look For in Photographers + How They Find Them

ASR: What is something that will make you choose one photographer over another?

AD: There’s a lot of different factors that go into selecting photographers. For me one main one is the client and the project itself. Are they safe, more adventurous, reserved, edgy? Once I figure that out, I determine the vibe of the project. For me mood is a key factor to selecting a photographer. Without knowing the photographer at a personal level, if I can sense the mood I’m going for within their portfolio I feel more confident working with them. There’s a sense of trust without really having to communicate. More and more, I feel that when a photographer is doing something different from the norm. I’m more than likely to push for them. If I get inspired by a photo that pushes my own conventional thinking, they’ve won me over. And that’s the thing with photographers, right? It’s that trust in giving them freedom without really micromanaging them to get the shot you’ve envisioned. I’ve been fortunate enough to have gotten to work with so many talented photographers. 

ASR: How do you find photographers?

AD: Rosters, Instagram, friends in the industry, I keep leave behinds when a photographer visits the agency. Instagram presence really helps too. 

ASR: Why does an Instagram presence really help?

AD: Instagram presence is important to me cause it gives me a sense of their personality. A portfolio is curated but an active photographer on Instagram draws me in on a personal level. Especially when I see work I might have not seen. When I see a photographer’s Instagram that’s not mimicking their portfolio it’s the truest form of connecting with them. Seeing the way they see the world.