We’re all either doing it – or trying to figure out how. Maybe trying to figure out how much is a better description. Some people have figured it out it seems. Chase Jarvis was a successful photographer I’d not discovered – until I started hearing about his active online persona. Now I hear about him everywhere. This guy is wired. If I accidently discovered him, think how many art directors have. Stock photographer extraordinaire Jack Hollingsworth is aggressively exploring all social media and doing what he calls “Toginars” – weekly podcasts with subscribing photographers. Former news photographer Jim MacMillan has 46,000 twitter followers. David Hobby has a great educational / technical site called Strobist and makes a six figure income from it with 350,000 readers.
Maybe the most interesting approach to me is wedding photographer Christopher Becker. He’s booked work from his Facebook account and has a plan for doing so. He also has an online wedding photography site called [b] school, aimed at pro photographers who pay $10 dollars a month. So far he has 1600 subscribers. Do the math. It’s clear some photographers have made social networking and their internet alter egos profitable. Some very profitable. Photo District News has an article with what they call the Five Biggest Photographers on the Internet. I think Chase and Jack should be in there too.
Me? I dabble. Facebook and Linkedin for the past year, this blog, but that’s about it. (Feel free to friend / connect) I can see youtube working. flickr scares me because you pretty much give up rights to your photos there. Then I discovered clients had set up accounts for their clients – using my photos. The art directors are pretty good about warning me. I appreciate it and just ask for proper photo credit and hopefully copyright notice. Twitter. Not sure what to say about that. I see myself possibly using it for part of my business. Maybe – we’ll see. I did set up an account. The surprising thing is I get nearly daily notices that I’m being followed. I’ve never made a single post. Go figure. Maybe getting to 46,000 is not as amazing as I thought. And if it seems like the future in photography is not in creating images – but rather in creating things of interest for other photographers – it may just be. Yuck.