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SportsShooter.com: Member Message Board

Any concerns about Instagram?
Phil Hawkins, Photographer
Fresno | ca | usa | Posted: 1:33 AM on 01.28.16
->> I am way late to the party about Instagram mainly because of the terrible terms. But recently a friend told me to get over it because it's become a huge resource. Comments? Anyone apprehensive about Instagram like they were when it first came out?
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Stanley Leary, Photographer, Photo Editor
Roswell | GA | | Posted: 7:35 AM on 01.28.16
->> There are many ways to use Instagram from a business perspective.

Here is my blog: Think of Social Media as another publication
http://blog.stanleyleary.com/2016/01/think-of-social-media-as-another.html

Here are more perspectives to help you see how Instagram can be used to grow your business.

How to Use Instagram for Your Photography Business
https://photographylife.com/how-to-use-instagram-for-your-photography-busin...

Instagram Marketing Resources
https://www.seniorsignite.com/instagram-marketing-resources/

Scott Kelby: 7 REASONS WHY PHOTOGRAPHERS NEED TO BE ON INSTAGRAM
http://scottkelby.com/7-reasons-why-photographers-need-to-be-on-instagram/

How Instagram Brought Me Business After Only One Week Using It
https://fstoppers.com/originals/how-instagram-brought-me-business-after-onl...

If You Are a Photographer and You Aren't on Instagram, You're Doing It Wrong
https://fstoppers.com/business/if-you-are-photographer-and-you-arent-instag...
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Doug Strickland, Photographer
Chattanooga | TN | USA | Posted: 9:10 AM on 01.28.16
->> Great links, Stanley. Phil, Instagram is literally a social media system built for photographers to be seen, and sure, with "regramming" and the like there is always a concern about people taking your photos, but I would say there's no more so than any other social media. Even more than that, it's becoming a sort of "mini photo blog" for many people as a way of getting their body of work seen while getting their words read along with it. Some of the most successful professional photographers I've seen on Instagram have their feeds carefully curated to show specific themes, styles, or tailored to who they know their audience is. I'm not a very good Instagrammer (is that a word now?) because, just like Twitter, I am bad at engaging people (commenting on other people's work is very important to build followers).
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Phil Hawkins, Photographer
Fresno | ca | usa | Posted: 10:36 AM on 01.28.16
->> Thanks, Stan and Doug... I guess I need to get over it. It was just that when Instagram first started there was a huge outcry over their user agreement as being a bit more confiscatory than FB. But oh well. Thanks again!
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Kiel Maddox, Photographer
Fresno | CA | USA | Posted: 5:30 PM on 01.28.16
->> I guess it depends on what you shoot exactly. I can see it being a huge plus for wedding photographers, but for sports shooters? I'm not so sure. Unless it's for a team looking for a last minute photographer after theirs bailed.

I've had a few discussions over some landscape/nature shots, but haven't seen anything from my sports photos, minus likes from the player(s) posted. I guess that's cool?

One thing I don't like is people taking the images and turning them into graphics. Never was a fan of that, even if "photo credit" was given. It happens quite often with my Fresno State football photos, but I guess there's nothing much to do without putting a massive watermark on the photo (and I don't want to do that).

You would definitely find use out of it with your nature photos, guaranteed.
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Doug Strickland, Photographer
Chattanooga | TN | USA | Posted: 6:49 PM on 01.28.16
->> I've seen people have fantastic success with sports. Brad is just one example but there are tons out there. Sports fans go nuts over seeing stuff on Instagram of their favorite teams and players, both pro and college, though I wouldn't expect much from high school sports.
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Stanley Leary, Photographer, Photo Editor
Roswell | GA | | Posted: 8:06 PM on 01.28.16
->> Doug

What do you mean by fantastic success? Brad himself just said in another thread there is no money in sports. Seems even he thinks sports is like covering politics––too many giving stuff away for free.

Seeing people using Instagram isn't the same as fantastic success.

I can see it helping your brand to get hired, but not sure I see it working for sports.

Love to hear otherwise.
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Clark Brooks, Photo Editor, Photographer
Urbana | IL | USA | Posted: 12:48 AM on 01.29.16
->> The disconnect here is the definition of "fantastic success". For a good majority of folks here like myself in the business before the proliferation of the DSLR, that would be defined as revenue, large sums of it, in negotiable currency generated from licensing or billable hours. Whereas today, a pretty picture heavy on saturated colors and HDR with 3,000+ LIKES/LOVES, a unit with no tangible value, is deemed a success.

This made me chuckle: "Sports fans go nuts over seeing stuff on Instagram of their favorite teams and players . . ."

That's great for those are working for free and have no expectation of licensing their work, but as far as I can tell I don't see how fans going nuts over a photo on social media directly translates into revenue. Fans - and those less than scrupulous business operations - are not going to license the image when they can just screen grab it.

Ignoring the bubbly enthusiasm, none of the links provided at the beginning of this thread offered anything of quantitative substance that the author/photographers could replicate. Strangely enough, none of the articles are title "How to make money using Instagram". Yep, I did Google the title and read two dozen or so articles that offered nothing concrete in relationship other than get a lot of followers. Without thousands, tens of thousands ideally, of followers success on IG is limited.

Yet, the best idea was build a large audience/following and once you got 'em, sell your IG account ... lol ...

As a pragmatic individual, I am quite willing to be enlightened and persuaded otherwise, however at this junction the realization of income as a result of posting photos to social media - and making BIG or invoicing for heady sums as the articles highlight - seems to have mirror the odds of winning a Power Ball jackpot. Just as none of the lottery tickets I've purchased turned out to be winners, neither have any of the hundreds of photos I've posted social media led to my "discovery" or been licensed for a "fantastic" sum of money.

In full disclosure I am a late adopter of Instagram like Phil having started @photonewswire a mere 20 weeks ago. The one thing that I really, really, really like about IG is the fact that it helps streamline social media broadcast by propagating posts to Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr. The ability to post to other SM platforms with the click of one button, reaching my network of followers across four sites, is a huge time saver at the end of the day.
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Richard Uhlhorn, Photographer
Chelan Falls | WA | USA | Posted: 2:03 AM on 01.29.16
->> I just started posting to Instagram. Five photos and one job. I also like the fact that I can share my Instagram images with a click on Twitter, Facebook and other social media sites. We will see how it works.
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Stanley Leary, Photographer, Photo Editor
Roswell | GA | | Posted: 2:46 AM on 01.29.16
->> I know a few photographers who have done an excellent job where using social media built their brand and through it helped them to get jobs.

Probably one of the best examples is Austin Mann

Here is his Instagram account
https://www.instagram.com/austinmann/

Another person who has leveraged social media is Esther Havens and here is her account on Instagram
https://www.instagram.com/estherhavens/

There is another aspect that both Austin Mann and Esther Havens do with their Instagram accounts rather than just show their work, they have a HUGE following. Well that translates into organizations hiring them with the intention of having them post on their personal accounts in addition to the organizations.

How many nonprofits have 84K followers? They are a publishing company with that size of following.

So saying that people are not making money using Instagram is rubbish. I would say using Instagram is like taking a picture. Just because you are using the medium doesn't mean you will be a success.

What is interesting these days over say years ago when printed publications were the only mediums for the most part for still photography is there are no gate keepers stopping anyone with a camera to reach their audience.

Today many that have huge audiences through online mediums are sometimes bigger than major printed publications or even traditional TV audiences.

There are people using pretty much all the different online mediums making a healthy living.

Youtube:
http://www.forbes.com/sites/maddieberg/2015/10/14/the-worlds-highest-paid-y...

Twitter:
http://expertphotography.com/top-20-photography-related-twitter-users/

Instagram:
http://petapixel.com/2015/03/06/top-instagram-users-making-thousands-per-ph.../

From that Instagram Link:

With its front row seats to this emerging industry, Mobile Media Lab is able to offer an accurate look at just how much money is changing hands these days. They say that represented Instagram users who have more than 100,000 followers can earn $700 to $900 per photo.

If you have 500,000 followers, you could be charging $2,000 to $3,000 per snap that thrusts a brand in front of your followers’ eyes.

Facebook:
http://www.niemanlab.org/2011/11/how-a-photographer-generated-over-100000-t.../

Stop looking at Social Media as time waste. Each medium is like another publication that can generate income. Just like all magazines or newspapers launched didn't make it so too with any medium.

What do all successful businesses have in common? They all solved a problem.

Solve a problem, then start the business
http://blog.stanleyleary.com/2015/09/solve-problem-then-start-business.html
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Clark Brooks, Photo Editor, Photographer
Urbana | IL | USA | Posted: 6:02 PM on 02.03.16
->> ".. using social media built their brand and through it helped them to get jobs" and there are "... Instagram users who have more than 100,000 followers can earn $700 to $900 per photo".

The problem as I see it is accumulating the 100K of organic followers. Is the return on the invested time to develop that audience greater than the sweat equity it took to build it?

Having viewed a couple of hundred photographer accounts, the vast majority of those with more than 2,000 followers posts were comprised of nude/swimsuit/lingerie photos. Other than Rob Mar and Brad Mangin, I didn't find any other "sports photographer" with more than 2,000 followers. I think the notion of building a large following and charging the dollar amounts mentioned in the above post goes back to my lottery analogy and like the odds of winning the big jackpot just as elusive.

Out of curiosity, does anybody here on SS have over 1,000 followers? If so, how long did it take you to reach that level?
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Kevin Krows, Photographer
Forsyth | IL | USA | Posted: 9:13 AM on 02.04.16
->> I hope to have 1000 followers very fast as soon as I upload my nude vegetable images. Cucumbers and Eggplant should be the driving force behind followers (so I've been told).
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Steven Bridges, Photographer
Knoxville | TN | United States | Posted: 10:46 PM on 02.14.16
->> Mark Rebilas has almost 9,500 followers.
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Stanley Leary, Photographer, Photo Editor
Roswell | GA | | Posted: 12:36 PM on 02.15.16
->> Some people still don't get it.

If you cannot create a following with your photography you are already proving you are not going to help any other entity increase their audience.

Social media is a way to prove to other potential clients that your work does demand attention.

Many who are doubters about this are often the ones struggling today.

They say I put up a great photo and I am not getting people to follow. They still are so absorbed with what is a great photo they miss the point. It isn't about them it is about the audience.

A photo needs to be relevant for the audience more than it has to be a great photo.

I think those who don't get social media are the same people struggling with why people are no longer buying those periodicals that used to give them assignments.
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Ron Erdrich, Photographer
Abilene | TX | USA | Posted: 5:55 PM on 04.24.16
->> So I'm reviving this thread just to learn a little more about building audience on Instagram. I've got 235 followers which is about my average. Sometimes it goes higher, but generally that's where it sits.

I use Instagram as a creative outlet, to be honest. I promote my column through it, but also as a place for me to send those pictures which I make mainly for myself. So it's a mix of personal and professional work, but keeping in mind my audience, I strive to maintain the same level of quality.

I started my Instagram back when you could only have one account at a time; now that you can have multiple accounts at once in the app it might make more sense to split my personal from my professional, but I feel like I've gone down this road this far, so I may as well keep on. It really is like a blog or journal for me.

I do agree about thinking of it as its own publication. I used to be more stringent about not applying filters to work shot with my DSLR, but I've eased up on that. There is an expectation on the platform that those filters are being used and while a filter may alter impact, it generally doesn't alter content. The exception being the selective focus option one can employ.
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Jeff Lewis, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | USA | Posted: 1:24 PM on 04.28.16
->> Instagram is a great site depending on how you use it. I have about 2500 followers and have never posted nude/lingerie/swimsuit photos. Mostly football pictures.

I actually use the site to make contact with NFL players I've just photographed, put a watermark on it, and hope they share it. When they do, I get others who follow me and then people who hire me to do various shoots for athletes.

A month ago, I did a shoot for Odell Beckham, Jr. and the NFL saw it, contacted me, and shared it and it got 129,000 likes on the NFL's page and got me about 400 extra followers and 3 paid shoots from NFL players of themselves working out.

Point is, it's how you use it. It can be a site to just post cool pictures but f you have a plan for it, it can be very beneficial.

Follow me at: @jjlewis06 and see what I mean…
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Thread Title: Any concerns about Instagram?
Thread Started By: Phil Hawkins
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