Flickr ConesIn the past two months I’ve put a lot more effort into shooting more regularly and sharing those images. I started by revitalizing my Flickr which is where the largest collection of my images lives. In these two months I have grown my following from about 100 followers to over 13 thousand using the technique in the first item below. With the increased exposure one of my more recent photos has made the explore page getting even more exposure. A popular challenge on flickr is the 365 project which inspired me to do a shorter 30 day challenge. So here are some of the important take aways I’ve learned from these past few months.

1. Build a following

It is very easy to follow a large number of people on Flickr via group members pages. To get started follow a bunch of people from a group that fits your style or taste.  The members list displays the newest members first so groups is a great place to find currently active members.  Lots of people follow back. start off by following a few hundred people and a good chunk will follow back. Interact with people as well. Continue to check back at these groups and continue the process to continue growing. Some people frown upon this practice but I get genuine interactions on my photos and acknowledge ever comment on all of my photos. This is completely alright in my book as long as your not an asshole and ignore people who are interacting with you and building a following is the key to getting your photos noticed. Keep in mind there are still different types of contacts to keep your growing contact list in order. There are the people you follow and then Friends and Family. I use these to delineate who people I added from groups are from people I actually know in real life.

2. Post One Photo at a Time

Post your best images and spread out posting images. I try to only post one photo per day which usually works well with my timing of editing photos. This allows you to focus on single images at a time and get them out quicker. Edit one photo at a time and complete it to it’s fullest and share it with the world instead of trying to get 10 images edit from a single day and share them all at once. Posting one at a time will also lead to more people interacting with it.  If you post a bunch of photos Flickr won’t always display at a full size especially in the phone/tablet apps. A single photo will always show the favorite and comment icons with photo. When  a group of photos appear users will have to click into a photo to then interact.

3. Always Add Titles, Metadata, Etc.

A title can change the way people look at a photo and provide extra context to help tell a story with your image. Great images do that on their own but a little help never hurts. Also, nothing looks less professional than having IMG_0042.jpg as your image title. Descriptions are nice too and provide room to expand on a nice concise title and allow you to talk about anything interesting during the capture of the image or even link out to your website for a blog post on it. Sharing technique is huge and I love sharing how I approached capturing an image and other photographers love reading that kind of stuff. Also there is not reason even to no include the metadata as far as camera settings go.  This will prevent questions from being raised about the technical details of a shot being raised and keep the conversation more on the conceptual level as settings are just settings.

4. Don’t Change the Photo Upload Date/Time

if you modify the date the photo was uploaded to get it higher up in your followers photostream it won’t be eligible for explore. Also done frequently it will annoy your following. If you have an old photo you want to feature consider just reuploading it. Do this with very old photos only. It’s just the decent thing to do.

5. Tread Carefully with Lightroom Exporting Directly to Flickr

I did a more in depth post about this here. In short, Lightroom might replace photos and make them private without your knowledge and you’ll lose favorites.

6. Get involved in groups

Circling back to groups again as this is where very active members of flickr will spend most of their time. Some groups do photo challenges and often provide good constructive feedback. So post your photos to groups but don’t in excess as that has been said to reduce your odds of being selected for the explore pool. Groups are the biggest takeaway here so get involved and interact with other member and start following a bunch.