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instagram strategy for photographers

Instagram Strategy for Photographers

Instagram is a huge opportunity to bring in more leads to your photography business. Here’s tips for an Instagram strategy for photographers!

If you are overwhelmed by Instagram, don’t know where to start, or just don’t feel like you have a consistent strategy to keep up and bring in leads to your wedding business, this is for you. Hannah from Sunny Social Collective dives into the world of Instagram, providing valuable guidance on how to approach the platform simply and sustainably. 

In a time where lead generation is crucial, many of us find ourselves grappling with the challenges of Instagram, particularly in the present time. However, this blog post aims to strip away the complexity and bring us back to the basics, offering practical advice on what to do, what to pay attention to, and what to prioritize. Prepare yourself for an enlightening journey!

About Hannah from Sunny Social Collective

Hannah embraces the principles of simplicity and sustainability as her life motto. This mindset extends to every aspect of her life, including her business endeavors. She believes in keeping things uncomplicated and avoiding unnecessary complexities and acknowledges that it’s easy to become overwhelmed by Instagram and other social media platforms. The rapid rise and fall of trends often pressure her to constantly create content to stay relevant. However, she has come to realize that this approach doesn’t align with her original intentions for the day.

So then Hannah would often get distracted and fail to accomplish what she needed to do, which resulted in feelings of stress. Alternatively, if she missed a particular trend, she would simply think, “Oh well, I missed out on that one. I guess I’ll jump on the next trend,” and then proceed to hop from one trend to another.

 She realized that she needed to break free from this cycle. If a trend happened to align with her filming schedule and made sense for her content, she would embrace it. However, she no longer wanted to put pressure on herself to constantly chase after trends.

Simple Steps to Improve Instagram Engagement

As we are all aware, Instagram and other social media platforms are constantly evolving and changing. It can be quite challenging to keep up with all these changes. The multitude of trends constantly flooding Instagram from various platforms daily. It’s understandable to feel overwhelmed by this abundance. Moreover, there’s an inherent sense of scarcity on Instagram that adds to the pressure. 

For instance, Hannah said that if she doesn’t capture a trend on the day it emerges and there are only 500 videos associated with it, it may not seem worthwhile. However, if she were to attempt it the next day when there are perhaps only a thousand videos, it may still not feel significant. On one hand, there’s the challenge of keeping up with trends, and on the other hand, there’s the ever-changing algorithm that Instagram continuously throws at its users, introducing new updates and features.

Social Media Trends

In the world of social media management, it often feels like there’s something new happening every single day. Whether it’s a voice update, algorithm change, or a new feature that you’re expected to embrace, it can be overwhelming. Not to mention the constant shifts in prioritizing photos. 

The confusion is real. In light of these challenges, it becomes crucial to stay grounded in your goals and align your strategy accordingly. Ask yourself: What are your social media goals? Who is your target audience? Taking the time to contemplate and plan with intentionality in these areas allows you to assess new trends more effectively. When faced with a new trend, you can now consider whether it aligns with your brand. If it does, you can confidently embrace it.

When Hannah engages in batch filming for her reels, she considers if a trend is still popular and aligns with her content. However, she no longer allows herself to dedicate an entire day to quickly chasing trends. This serves as an alternative approach to following trending audios. 

On the other hand, there are updates and recommendations from social media managers. Hannah evaluates these updates against her current strategy and goals, considering if her target audience would be interested. She emphasizes that just because something is trending or new doesn’t mean one has to immediately jump on it and overhaul their existing efforts. Establishing a strong foundation and framework to measure these opportunities is crucial to avoid feeling overwhelmed and eventually becoming disenchanted with posting on Instagram. A solid foundation is key.

Starting without having a strategy

When integrating something new into any aspect of life, whether it’s your business or personal life, it is essential to start small. There is no need to make a sudden leap from having no posting schedule, no target audience in mind, and no strategy, to immediately trying to do everything perfectly. This kind of approach can be overwhelming and debilitating for many individuals, including herself.

Instead, it is much wiser, to begin with small steps. One possible starting point is to establish a posting frequency for your content. Take some time to reflect and determine how often you can realistically prepare and post content throughout the week. This self-reflection will help you set a feasible target and allow you to allocate time accordingly.

By starting small with a specific posting schedule, you are allowing yourself to develop consistency and build momentum gradually. This approach is far more manageable and sustainable in the long run. Remember, the key is to avoid overwhelming yourself by trying to tackle everything at once. Take one step at a time and gradually expand your strategy as you gain confidence and experience success.

Building a Strategy Step by Step

Whenever Hannah introduced something new into her business or life, her go-to approach was to start small and gradually expand. There was no need to jump from having no posting schedule or target audience to a fully formed strategy. The idea of tackling everything at once could be overwhelming and debilitating. It was much wiser, to begin with small steps. For instance, she could start by deciding how often she wanted to post per week. She could sit down and assess how much time she had available to prepare posts throughout the week.

Establishing a consistent posting schedule and identifying a target audience are crucial starting points. Hannah believes one should determine how many days a week they can commit to posting and stick to that number. 

Reliability and consistency build trust and attract followers. Also, think about her target audience’s preferences and adjust her content and tone accordingly. By focusing on these aspects, she can begin her journey effectively.

Strategies for Lead Generation on Instagram

Hannah emphasized the importance of understanding one’s target audience when it comes to effective communication. As a social media manager primarily working with photographers, Hannah stressed the need for photographers to identify their ideal clients and tailor their content accordingly.  A common mistake she observes among photographers who post a mix of unrelated photos, such as family portraits and adventure elopements, on their social media grids. As this can confuse potential clients who were seeking a specific type of photography service.

Hannah advises photographers to start by defining their target audience and understanding their preferences, values, and demographics. By doing so, photographers can align their online presence, including their website and social media, with the needs and interests of their ideal clients. This foundation is important for overall business and social success.

Another common mistake she highlights is the reluctance of some photographers to showcase themselves. As professionals who capture significant moments in people’s lives, photographers need to establish a personal connection with their potential clients. By occasionally sharing their own stories, appearing in videos or photos, and showing their personality, photographers can build rapport and create a sense of familiarity. This approach helps potential clients relate to them and increases the likelihood of bookings.

Hannah cautioned against relying solely on a logo or keeping oneself hidden from view. Clients are more inclined to choose photographers they feel connected to or have some knowledge of. By revealing a bit about themselves and allowing clients to form a connection point, photographers can differentiate themselves from those who remain distant and anonymous. Ultimately, photographers should recognize their significant role in capturing pivotal moments in people’s lives and leverage that connection to build trust and secure bookings.

Showing up in sharing Stories: how to start

Hannah used to be just as scared to post, hesitant to show up on her social media stories and reels. The idea of putting herself out there and being vulnerable felt terrifying. She acknowledged the validity of feeling nervous and anxious about speaking on stories or revealing one’s face. It’s natural to worry about the outcome and obsessively review the content, fearing mistakes or looking foolish.

She makes it clear that she wasn’t coming from a place of perfection. She had experienced the same fear and anxiety when she started showing up online. To gradually become more comfortable with showing her face and personality, Hannah advises starting small. 

Changing the profile photo to a picture of oneself that aligns with branding. It could be a photo taken with a professional camera, ensuring a better quality representation. If photographers already had suitable images, they could replace their logo with a personal photo.

Next, get more comfortable by sharing behind-the-scenes moments of photoshoots in stories or reels. This allows the audience to become familiar with the photographer’s personality and helps build confidence in showing up in that way on their account. To establish a routine, she set a goal of speaking on stories once a week for a month, emphasizing the importance of preparing and thinking about what to talk about. When she started doing it, she realized that nothing bad happened. It provided reassurance and confidence as she accumulated positive experiences.

Always remember that if someone reacts negatively or unfollows after a story, they were not the target audience. Social media is about finding one’s people, those who align with their goals and values. Any negative feedback only helps in identifying the community that genuinely connects with and supports the business. Understanding this perspective can be a helpful reminder during the process.

A positive mindset

Mindset is important when it comes to sharing stories on social media. Approaching it with negativity, obligation, or hesitation can shape the overall experience. On the other hand, adopting a positive outlook and believing that it will be fine can make the process naturally easier. 

Setting achievable goals can also help. Instead of immediately aiming to post a story every week, she suggests starting with a simpler goal of filming one story per week, with no obligation to actually share it. This allows you to get comfortable with hearing yourself talk and gain confidence. 

Another helpful tip is to start by talking on the “close friends’’ feature, gradually expanding the circle to include a mix of Instagram friends and real-life friends. Seeking feedback from a best friend can further boost confidence. By consciously developing a positive mindset and gradually exposing oneself to sharing stories, the process becomes more comfortable and enjoyable.

Final Piece of Advice

A few different things to ensure your bio is optimized, your content and posts need to be optimized and in alignment with your goals. By utilizing relevant keywords and strategic placement, individuals can increase their visibility in the right spaces. Hannah also encourages showing one’s personality and getting to know the target audience, as this fosters a genuine connection. 

Also, the follower counts as a measure of success is not relevant, as it holds little significance compared to actual bookings and engagement. Instead, you can approach social media with confidence and a mindset focused on taking action. Believing in oneself, even if it means faking it initially, can lead to eventual success. 

While there is much more to learn, these tips provide a solid foundation for building a compelling online presence.

You can find Hannah on Instagram and everywhere else at sunnysocialcollective.

instagram strategy for photographers

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