Eric Kim black background in Kyoto

Dear friend,

Sad reality: photos are just “content” nowadays — to fill in the negative space between advertisements on social media.

DOWNLOAD PDF: Photos are content

How many advertisements do you see nowadays on Instagram and Facebook (Facebook owns Instagram)

For example, I’m so glad I deleted Instagram. Whenever I see Cindy scroll through Instagram, I see so many advertisements.

Now, I don’t necessarily see advertisements as a moral evil or whatever. But the truth is— social media networks like Facebook and Instagram aren’t these benevolent platforms for us to share our art. They are advertisement platforms — the photos we upload are just the content to keep people addicted to the platform, which allows us to consume and click on more advertisements.

I’m part of the problem.

As a “content marketer”— I know the truth and the sad reality:

“Content” — ie, writing, pictures, and videos are just seen as filler for advertising.

All killer, or filler?

Content is just filler. Like filler in meatballs, or Things marketers just keep pumping out, to keep us “engaged”.

Even when I have meetings with advertising folks, they always refer to pictures, photos, videos, and writing as “content”.

What this means:

There is no difference between pictures, photos, visual art, videos, or anything we consume on our phones and devices.

Essentially what I’m trying to say is this:

Modern culture doesn’t see our visual art as art — it sees it just as “content”,

Don’t watch “free” TV

I once heard a saying that

TV shows are just the filler in between commercials.

In today’s social media world:

Social interactions and our personal pictures are just the filler in between the banner advertisements.

Are you just feeding the beast?

Once again to clarify, there is nothing “evil” about social media networks. I still think they are great — you can stay in touch with friends and family and you have a free platform to share your pictures.

But — just be skeptical, and be real with yourself. Unfortunately on social media, your pictures are just “content” to feed the social media beast.

Practical suggestions

  1. Start your own photography blog. If you upload photos to Instagram or Facebook on a regular basis, there is no reason for you to not have your own photo blog. You don’t need to write anything — just upload photos on a daily basis. To keep it super simple, use WordPress.com and pay for the premium version, and get your own personal domain.
  2. When you’re trying to market yourself, link to your personal photography blog or website — not your Instagram profile. You don’t need to drive more traffic to Facebook (which owns Instagram).
  3. If you want to learn how to build a following read my guide on content marketing for photographers.

ERIC

PHOTOGRAPHY ENTREPRENEURSHIP 101