Best Social Media Apps For Photographers
Social media offers a ton of ways for photographers to share and promote their work; but which app is best for photographers? With so many different ones to choose from, it’s hard to know which are actually worth your time. As a photographer, you want to use something that makes your work look professional while exposing it to the largest number of eyeballs. To help set you on the right track, here are 12 of the best social media apps for photographers.
Currently, the best social media app for photographers is Instagram. Despite many people calling foul on the app’s algorithm for limiting reach, it still proves valuable for any photographer. With the ability to connect with potential clients, create an image gallery, and interact with other photographers in your space, it’s a useful networking tool that simultaneously promotes your images.
Even if you’ve gone through all the common social apps people use, there will be some new ones in this list you’re guaranteed to enjoy. Whether you’re a photographer looking for an app that promotes your images, allows you to create galleries or network with others, there’s something on this list for you. Let’s get into it!
The 12 Best Social Media Networks For Photography
All 12 of these social media apps are completely free to sign up and make accounts with. However, there are some platforms that offer paid upgrades to allow larger gallery sizes or different publishing options.
It’s easy to see why Instagram is a useful app for photographers. It’s the largest app of its kind, and one of the few photo apps that offers a full social network in addition to letting you showcase photos. Instagram claims 1 billion monthly active users around the world, and with that many people on the platform, you have more exposure than anywhere else.
There are some drawbacks to the platform – Instagram has a known bot account problem, and it can be hard to get your photos noticed in the vast sea of them on the platform as a whole. However, that’s outweighed by the advantages of having an easy to access portfolio to show both friends and clients. If you tell someone to check out your photos on Instagram, they’ll know just where to find your page.
500px might remind you of other apps at first glance. It does let you display your photos in a gallery, and the look of it might remind you of something like Flickr, but this site offers more than just showing your pictures off.
The site claims to have a special algorithm that gives exposure to newly posted photos and new photographers. It’s often hard to get noticed as a newbie, so this might be valuable if you’re looking to get into posting your photos online.
You can display your services as a professional photographer and get hired from just your page. You can license your photos out and receive a high rate of royalties, too. Obviously, the advantage here is that the app can act as multiple things – a gallery, a storefront, and a place to advertise your services as a pro.
Adobe products are widely used by professionals and hobbyists alike in creative fields, and Behance is the official photo app that’s attached to them. There are over 10 million members on Behance and the app brands itself as the world’s largest creative network for both showcasing and discovery.
One of the main purposes of Behance is to act as a portfolio. It’s linked with the Adobe Portfolio service which allows photographers to create a professional-looking portfolio without spending time setting up web software or blog themes. However, those looking to use Adobe Portfolio will have to pay for a Creative Cloud subscription, as it’s bundled with the other things Adobe offers with that membership.
Facebook isn’t the first one that probably comes to mind when you think of photography apps. However, just like Instagram, it has a massive pool of users and can be useful just because of how widespread it is. You can display your photos on your profile and it’s also possible to set up a business page on Facebook.
It’s very easy for potential clients to get in touch with you through the messenger system if they like what they see. Also, Facebook has some of the most powerful advertising on the internet. If you want to bring more customers to your photography business, targeted Facebook ads may be one way to pull it off.
Pinterest has risen over the years from being a relatively unknown niche site to one of the largest photo-based apps around. It had over 400 million active users as of August 2020 and revolves around virtual pinboards that can include images from all around the internet.
Pinterest is useful for driving traffic back to your main gallery, if you build a following from curating boards and then pin photos from your gallery there. If you have a blog or sell prints from your website, sharing your work on Pinterest is a great way to increase your traffic and even earn more revenue!
Tumblr is mainly known as a blogging website – but you might find it useful as a photographer, too. If you want a place to put interesting photos and to share similar photos from others, you’ll find that Tumblr covers many niches and can even let you build up a following from others with the same interests. If you want to write blog posts instead of just building a portfolio, Tumblr can do that also.
Ello is newer than some of the apps on this list. It was created only six years ago as an alternative to existing social networks. The site can be compared to Pinterest and covers some of the same niches such as photography and fashion. It’s focused on creators specifically and brands itself as a global community of artists. While this one isn’t as popular as some of the others, you might find like-minded people there.
Stories are a common feature on social media these days. We’ve all seen them on Instagram and other platforms have experimented with their own versions of the format. But Steller is a network that focuses on it as a main feature. The platform is travel focused and allows you to share your trip photos in story format.
If you’re a travel photographer, or just a photographer that’s taking a trip, you might find this one a nice way to get your pictures out to others. The app offers more unique layouts than some of its competitors in the stories market and also allows you to add music or your stories to a map.
Flickr is one of the oldest photo sharing services in the game, having been launched in 2004, and it can be invaluable for both hobbyist and professional photographers. Flickr is great for storing large amounts of photos and professionals may find it useful for delivering these bulk photo sets to clients.
Flickr no longer gives a terabyte of storage for free, but more casual photographers may be fine with just the 1,000 free photos that the site does allow users to store.
If you do want to store more than 1,000 photos on Flickr, you’ll have to buy a premium subscription. Ultimately, though, the annual price is affordable and there are not that many other places out there that make it easy to store all of your pictures in one place.
YouPic is another site that aims to do it all. The site displays a number of award-winning professionals as members and claims you can upload unlimited public and private photos while also creating a custom website with its own domain, with no knowledge of coding or web design needed.
You can also use it to create a shop to sell your work, so if you’re looking for somewhere that does everything, YouPic is one of the names to consider.
Some photography sites can be lonely, with little interaction from member to member – Viewbug seems to have been created to fix that. The platform claims you can join millions of other creatives from around the world and focuses on being a community of photographers ranging from full-time professionals to hobbyists taking vacation photos.
It also hosts contests and challenges, which could be a good way to get eyes on your photos and test your skills against others.
Vero is another social network, but it brands itself differently from others. It markets itself as having no ads or algorithms to mine your data, so this might be one to look into if you care about privacy as a feature.
While it’s not exclusively an app for photographers, its format has been compared to Instagram and it could be a good option for those who dislike the data collection of Facebook and Instagram. It’s also one of the newest apps on this list, as it was created in 2019.
Do Photographers Need Social Media?
Social media has become a part of modern photography, so it’s important to establish yourself on at least one or two apps. By making your photos easier to find, it’s far more likely for new fans or potential clients to find you online. Since social media offers photographers an easy way to share and network all at once, it’s a valuable tool to use.
You may be tempted to start making accounts on every social media platform available, but you’re just wasting your time. After making an account, remember the time and energy required to stay active on any particular platform. In many cases, social media apps want you to post multiple times per week (or even per day) if you want the best reach.
Multiply all that energy over the 12 apps in this list, and you’ll be burnt out in no time. Instead, pick one or two apps that you feel bring the most value to your photography. Perhaps your goals are to make more money from clients, sell more prints, or just get more recognition for your work. Whatever the case, it’s worth considering why you’re joining an app before you actually do.
If you aren’t sure, the two apps I would recommend trying first is Instagram and Pinterest. Both of these apps are some of the world’s biggest photo-sharing platforms, which makes you (the photographer) a perfect fit. On Instagram, you can easily curate a small gallery of your best images, while on Pinterest you can get more traffic to your actual website.
Instagram has worked well for me to connect with other photographers or even land new photo gigs. Since everyone’s so easily accessible on that platform, it’s a great way to network online.
Alternatively, Pinterest doesn’t work great for networking, but, every user on that app is searching for something. People go to Pinterest to find new blog posts, inspirational images, and whatever else. By sharing your images, and linking them back to your website, you can quickly send new traffic your way and potentially land new print sales, or even clients!
Those are the two that have always worked for me, but I encourage you to experiment with other options and see for yourself!
So those are 12 of the best social media apps for photographers. With this list, you’re guaranteed to find the right place to share your images, build a following, and get more recognition for your beautiful photos.