Social media for photographers is an excellent way to grow leads and connect with potential clients. People buy from people they trust and connect with. There are millions of people across many different social media platforms and it can feel challenging to decide where to share your work and how to do it.
This article will explore the top social media platforms for professional photographers to make sure their content reaches as many people as possible and to help you connect with the best audience for your work.
Table of Contents
- Which Social Media Platform is Best for Photographers?
- How do Photographers Advertise on Social Media?
- Social Media Tools
Which Social Media Platform is Best for Photographers?
When it comes to social media platforms for photographers, Instagram tops our list as a marketing tool. This is the best social network for photographers because Instagram is full of people looking for beautiful photography and connections.
When it comes to Instagram think quality over quantity. The platform has become the holy grail of social networks and the competition is stiff!
But, that doesn’t mean you can’t make it work for you. Don’t worry about having a million followers, instead focus your attention on connecting with your followers in a meaningful way by providing information about yourself and your work. Instagram can be a valuable marketing tool when you stop making it a popularity contest and post high-quality content that keeps your people coming back for more.
Instagram is one of the highest performing social networks when it comes to social media for photographers. It puts an emphasis on your photos and is the easiest way to target and engage potential customers.
But keep in mind the only downside to Instagram is it isn’t set up to drive potential customers directly to your photography blogs or websites. It keeps customers mostly on the platform so try to make your posts like a blog and share and write just as you would for posts on your website.
Best time to Post on Instagram
Much like Facebook, people spend a lot of time on Instagram checking it in the morning and before bed. However you will find that many people tend to scroll Instagram at lunch or while they are taking breaks from work during the day. So it’s important to try to scatter your posts between morning, midday, and early evening.
Unlike other social media platforms, Pinterest isn’t about likes or followers. Pinterest is set up to backlink to your website and attracts people who are ready to buy. We love Pinterest for photographers, because not only can you showcase your image with beautiful pins, but it is the best social media platform made for buying.
When you’re sharing on Pinterest, you lead the business to your website. Users want to find wedding and event photographers and it’s also a great way for you to stay up to date on the latest industry trends in photography and general content.
Pinterest is also one of the best social networks for photographers because you never know which of your images will go viral and attract more users to your other media. We love that it doesn’t take much time to share and get in front of people in one post.
Twitter is a great social media platform for photographers because unlike Instagram, posts are chronological and not by the number of likes you get users. This means if you post often on Twitter, you are more like to get work from your content.
We also rate Twitter as one of the top social media for photographers because it is a simplistic form of communication forcing you to be direct and to the point with users. Users are limited to 140-characters in their posts.
Additionally, the news is found to be breaking on Twitter before any other social media platforms. Users get to search for results quickly with hashtags and keywords which means more control to find a photographer and your content.
Best time to Post on Twitter
Twitter is great because post appear in the order they are posted that is why you want to capture your audiences eye at precisely the right time of day. The best time to post 9am and 8pm in your audiences times zone. Studies have also shown that the worst time to post on Twitter is anytime before 5am or after 9pm.
Facebook ranks high on our social media picks for your photography business. Photographers usually combine Instagram directly to their Facebook to cross their social media marketing sharing. Additionally, Facebook is a great way to get people to share your posts and find you through mutual friends.
Also, Google ranks your Facebook page very highly when people look for you. We also love that Facebook contains mini social networks for photographers through private groups by genre of photography such as wedding photographers.
Even more, it’s easy to find everyone and their mother on the platform and find social media connections you may not have known even existed. Sharing your work on Facebook doesn’t take much time and people love to see beautiful images on their newsfeed that they can repost and share.
Best time to Post on Facebook
People spend a lot of time on Facebook, in fact it is rather addictive. But the general rule of thumb is that it’s the first thing people check in the morning when they wakeup and the evening before going to bed. So make sure to target your dream client and what time zone they are in whether it’s EST, PST, or somewhere else in the world, take their morning and bedtimes routines into consideration when posting. Have a look at your insight page for your business account on Facebook to get a better idea of who is looking at your posts and at what times.
Think of Behance as LinkedIn for creatives. This social media platform was designed by Adobe and is one of the best photography networking sites available online. Use Behance to share your portfolio and favorite images. Like other social media sites, Behance allows users to like and comment on your photos, but what’s different is it is designed more for graphics and photography.
Photographers love to get feedback and professional critiques for free on the platform to improve their work. Learning from other professionals is a sure way to help your photography business grow.
This platform, much like Instagram and Pinterest is heavy with photography images. You may think Flickr is outdated since it started in 2004. But it’s one of our top picks for storing all your photos online. Instagram is fun but it’s not useful when it comes to backing up your high-quality photography. Flickr has updated its content a lot over the years and now offers a free version with a limit of 1,000 photos. Use this platform to store extremely high-resolution images, even up to 5k! It’s a great solution to control keeping your images safe in one place.
This social media is made for visual creatives to connect, including photographers. We think it’s a great platform because unlike Instagram it offers tools for your content to be seen by all the right people in the photography business. With Visura, you can control your portfolio, updates, writing, and get involved in competitions that will help you connect with many other photographers in the world. Take the time to get to know other photojournalists, conceptual photographers, and look at new work to get inspired and market yourself.
This website is a community for photographers to see what’s new with photography gear and share opinion articles. Much of the website is also about sharing work and getting feedback from your photographer peers. Many photographers use Fstoppers to see what others are saying about gear before they invest in something new. Look at this website if you want to compare and contrast feedback.
Many photographers use 500px as a social network. Unlike Behance, 500px focuses solely on photography and does not breakdown design by the creative type. This is a great website to get your photography in front of a worldwide audience. They offer many levels of membership starting with a free plan and working up to $3.99 a month. They even offer the chance to promote your own photography workshops. Also, use 500px to control licensing your images. You will receive up to 60% of licensing fees.
Vero is not just for photographers but gives you a wider audience to gain exposure for your work. Additionally, Vero is popular for sharing books, links, photos, and much more. Photographers appreciate that this social media platform shares their photos in full resolution. You can also catalog your photos by location. Lastly, you can share links on the platform allowing you to lead potential customers and new followers to your website and other social media.
The platform’s tagline is “Find your home among the world’s best photographers”. YouPic is an excellent source to rub elbows with some of the top photographers around the world. You could have your work sitting next to Joel Meyerowitz and Steve McCurry, who also use the site!
Just like Instagram, you can share photos that people can interact with but what is different about it is the fact that it’s more designed for professionals. It serves as a space for professional photographers to share ideas and find clients. But, keep in mind the platform is not free. The cheapest plan is $4.99 a month. Lastly, you can earn this money back by using the platform to sell your photos and services so we say it’s worth a try.
This social media platform for photographers is designed to allow you to share stories about your photos. This is the top social network to mix photos with texts. When you read stories on Exposure, it feels more like browsing your favorite magazine or book than looking at a platform. Photographers love their clean easy to read layout with large format photography. The free version of Exposure allows you to post 3 stories a month, if you want to share more than that you will have to pay for a monthly or yearly subscription.
This platform feels a lot like Exposure.co but the main difference is it’s for mobile users. It features new work on a regular basis that you can easily view on your smartphone. Steller Stories allows you to post an album of images and create a story around it. After you create your story, you can share it with other users and exchange ideas and feedback. If the platform likes your stories it will even feature them, bringing you more exposure.
Tumblr is known as one of the first to share photographs on social media. Way before Instagram and Pinterest appeared people used Tumblr to share their favorite photos and stories. Photographers love the simplicity of the platform and how easy it becomes to reshare with the click of a button. Tumblr is now 11 years old and still remains popular among millennials and amateur enthusiasts. It’s still a great tool to share your work and free!
TikTok may have started as an app for tweens to lipsync but has rapidly grown into a platform relevant for photographers and people of all ages. The TikTok algorithm is still a mystery which leaves more room for viewers to discover you. Many photographers use the platform to share techniques on posing, creative ideas, and where to shoot. Viewers love easy and free information. Lastly, using video and music is a way to keep potential clients tuned in and learning about your work, guiding them to your website. Control who sees your work using hashtags and locations as well.
How do Photographers Advertise on Social Media?
As we have learned above, social platforms are a great way for photographers to share their photography and get more users to their websites. But how should photographers advertise their photography on social media? Let’s explore some photography marketing techniques for sharing your best photos.
Decide on the type of Account you Want to Build
Social media is broken down into two types of users. Professional and personal accounts. This is true across all social media networks. That’s why it’s important that you pick which one you want to use social media for and stick with it.
We recommend starting with a professional photographer account and center it around your business story. Ask yourself these questions every time you come up with a new post “does this pertain to the voice and look of my business?” Users don’t like to see a mix of high-quality portraits against your cell phone photos with your friends in a bar. Remember, keep your business and personal life separate on social media.
Timing is Everything
For photographers who want to use social media to attract new customers, it’s important you post at specific times of the day otherwise your post could get lost in time zones and work life. Photographers should aim to share their photos in the morning when people are first glancing at their phones upon wakeup or in the evening when they return from work and are scrolling. Sharing at the right time of day will give you the best results across any social media platform. So keep this in mind for your photography business.
Only Post Your Best Work
When it comes to photography on social media, you need to be critical of your work. Only post your best images on any social network. This means you should take more time studying your photos and decide, could this photo be better with a little more post-processing?
If the answer is yes, then take the time to edit before adding it to your social media. In other words, be picky! If you are having a hard time deciding if the photo is worthy of social media then chances are, you shouldn’t post it. The competition is especially high on Instagram, so take more time to control what you share on that network. Remember, your work will constantly be evolving and changing and you want your social media to reflect that.
Run a Contest
Followers love free gifts! Running a contest is a great form of social media marketing. Give away a free photo session or a travel print. Make sure you require your audience to like your photo and tag a friend in the comments. The bigger the giveaway, the more people will share and in turn find your photography.
Connect with Followers
Always remember that social media was created for people to connect and share their work, lives, and food photos! Try to search out relevant hashtags your dream photo clients would look for such as #parisweddingphotographer or #engagementphotographer.
Find the top photos in each category and interact with users who like and comment on the photos. Help them find your account by contacting them first. Ask them how wedding planning is going? Or if they would like help finding a hair and makeup artist. Additionally, by helping in a genuine way, they are more likely to trust and return to you as their photographer.
Join Facebook Groups
Search for Facebook groups based on the type of photography genre you match with. For example, if you live in Paris, search for “Paris Photographers”. The idea behind this is to share work, ideas, and keep updated on what’s going on in your area. Sometimes photographers are overbooked and offer jobs to the group. Furthermore, many times there is construction or work to a famous monument you may shoot near. These groups are a great tool to exchange work and ideas more relevant to where you are and what you are shooting.
Posting 10 times a day is the fastest route to unfollows. People in any network don’t like to be bombarded with photos or oversharing. A nice rule of thumb is to post once or twice a day. Use your preferred platform as a photographer and don’t get greedy with images and sharing. Finally, think of social media as a marathon rather than a sprint to the finish line.
If you really want your Instagram or other social media platforms to grow it’s really helpful to share your knowledge. For example, if you are a wedding photographer you can share a great wedding photo, and in the caption list your top picks for hair and makeup artists in the area.
Or if you photograph children, you could share your top tricks for preparing families for a great portrait session. Prove to your potential photography clients that you are an expert in your field by sharing content that shows that. Use your knowledge to wow clients before they book you.
Control who sees your photography by tagging relevant locations relating to the shoot. Many people search for photographers based on location, so it’s important to use this to your advantage, especially on Instagram.
When you tag locations you also give viewers an idea of how their photos could look there, which in turn makes them want to book you. You can bring their dreams to life by finding you on social media. Also, don’t forget to tag your collaborators and ask them to tag you in return. This can be anything in the photo from the models, flowers, hair and makeup, and the hotel or event group.
When it comes to hashtags, Instagram may be the most important platform to use them. Decide what you are trying to achieve with your image. The golden rule is to write at least 11 hashtags. We recommend first researching your competitors hashtag to see what they are using. Look to see if they use the same hashtags for every post or it varies. Also remember to include a hashtag of your company and words that trend in your genre such as #parisweddingphotographer, so that potential clients can easily find you.
Using hashtags on Pinterest has been widely debated over the past years. They had them, then they took them away, and now they are back! So yes you can use them but keep in mind their effectiveness is short lived. They only offer a bit of extra exposure for a short amount of time when you first post a pin. As with most hashtags, make sure to use relevant ones to the pin, don’t waste people’s time if your hashtag has nothing to do with what you are sharing.
Hashtags are searchable on Facebook and a great tool to help viewers find the things they are really interested in, such as your photography. Use hashtags on Facebook to encourage people to interact with your post and start conversations with you. Studies show that you should use them sparingly on Facebook unlike Instagram. Also, make a branded tag for yourself and use them strategically because using hashtags just for the sake of it could be detrimental to your marketing.
Size Requirements for Images
Thankfully Instagram is finished with their square only posting sizes. You now have numerous options for the size of your images. They recommend you download the most recent version of the app, upload a photo with a width of at least 1080 pixels, and an aspect ratio of 1.91.1 and 4:5.
The ideal Pinterest image size is 1000 x 1500px and an aspect ratio of 2:3. These dimensions are recommended by Pinterest for standard Pins, to guarantee the best Pin image quality possible! Photo sizes should be a minimum of 600 x 900.
Most sites will decrease the size of your images to save space on the platform. That is why it’s important to check site by site. Facebook recommends resizing your photos to the following sizes for them to look their best on the site. If you want to avoid compression by Facebook make sure your images are less than 100KB. Before uploading, photos should be saved as a JPEG with an sRGB color profile. Regular photos should be 720px, 920px, or 2048px wide, while cover photos should measure 851px by 315px.
500px seems to be the highest rated when it comes to saving your photos in high resolution. Many forums claim that the higher the resolution of your image upload, the better chances of your image getting shared and viewed. So think of this platform as the place to post your best quality images when it comes to resolution.
Social Media Tools
When it comes to posting across all these platforms its wise to invest in 3rd party software. Not only will these websites save you time, but they will also make you money because they know the best things to say, post, and when. There are a variety of websites to use that you can create all your posts in one day and have them post throughout the month. Here are our top picks for social media tools, and you can sign up for a free trial to see how it works!
In conclusion, you may be wondering why bother with all this work! The truth is social media is a necessary evil for your business. You can use it to connect with new photographer friends and much more. Additionally, make money by connecting with your dream clients. And lastly, use it to find inspiration on those dry days when you don’t feel like taking photos or need to remix your work.