This is a podcast episode to expand on an answer to a question from a LIVE Photo Mentor Academy broadcast by Lee Love to offer a few perspectives and maybe solutions around a social media and business issue.
Lee does a LIVE show every Friday at 9P EDT on YouTube and Facebook to promote his Photo Mentor Academy, a place for anyone with an interest in photography.
I’m learning so much about photography since working with Lee that a few of my friends commented that they had no idea I knew so much about photography.
And I DON’T!!! Except all of the wonderful things I’ve been learning as part of Photo Mentor Academy. Thanks Lee:)
My favorite thing about learning about photography isn’t about photography at all but more about observation and allowing yourself to think creatively. My first impression of Lee and the concept of learning to SEE like an artist inspired me to write this on my main site.
But I digress. In this episode, I talk about a few things I have experience with as a business and creative, and with social media marketing, which I find myself doing more and more of for clients!
What’s My Take?
I share some thoughts on the question you see in the Title Visual (above) but from a couple of different perspectives. First, I want to encourage you to find joy, even your passion in the act of creating, itself.
Feeling happy with your work and proud of yourself for doing your very best is reward enough. Feeling and appreciating your best effort helps propel you and excite you for your next assignment. Sure, it’s fine to want to improve. To strive to improve. But completing work well, and to your best ability, is reason to celebrate.
So mostly, I urge you to find joy in your work. Be satisfied, accolades or not. Feel your own growth and keep pushing your boundaries. Because as a creator, I think you already know, your emotional state is a factor. Take your wins, even small ones, and roll them into an ever-increasing cumulative value.
When you keep improving yourself as a creator, without looking outwardly for approval, I think you’ll not only be happier but also more productive.
Social Media is a Conversation
My next point is a reminder to you that marketing today is a two-way conversation. YOU, therefore, get to participate! Particularly if you are friends or friendly with your client—maybe you’re already connected on social—then you can simply pop in and say hello. For instance, you can say something like, “I am so thrilled at how happy you are with this shot. It’s one of my favorites, too! I had so much fun working with you that day and can’t wait for our next project together.”
Bamm. Now everyone knows…all those likes and loves and commenting souls get to see you exist. And, in the nicest way.
But then I ask about this idea. What if your client, the lovely person who paid for your work, simply wasn’t thinking about you at all? What if sharing it as their very own is, in fact, in essence, the biggest compliment of all for you? A customer loves and is sharing and has adopted as their own your super fab work! So what’s the disappointment in that? I feel like that’s the biggest win you could want, right?
I also remind you that often, your best work, even when someone else buys it can also be showcased and used for marketing by you. Add it to your portfolio.
Finally, I urge you to promote people around you, who inspire you, teach you, and collaborate with you. Promoting one another is what makes the world go around.
You can easily read through my work and listen to my podcasts and find me promoting others left and right. By doing so, many friendships and many business relationships bloom. Getting your name out there means participating with people.
Who Owns What?
Some things you sell as a photographer, or writer for that matter, are bought with the understanding that your part is a ghost existence, lingering way back in the shadows.
Again, a good time to remind you to feel the joy and happiness in the process of creating, alone.
No company wants to share the spotlight with you when they are flashing their LOGO design (you created) all around the planet. It feels and is 100% a purchased product in certain situations. No one credits models with their name in a business magazine photoshoot. Or the lighting guy. They’re essential, maybe even central but there’s no residual credit.
Of course, the agreement you make and the exclusive or other rights to creative properties varies by type or by the deal, and there may be other factors as well. So, getting proper legal advice is advisable to be safest.
Remember, sharing, quoting, and promoting with proper credit will usually pay off for everyone. It helps your friends and audience, it solidifies relationships, and it strengthens networking efforts.
If you’d like to learn more about photography or Photo Mentor Academy or the genius of Lee Love, here are some handy links: