News and Views from Dave Wilson

Archive for April 25th, 2009

“Clandestine Flickr Marketing”

by on Apr.25, 2009, under Photography

This has been an interesting week for me on Flickr. Over the last few months I’ve been working on ways to increase the number of people viewing my photos and some of those ways have involved Flickr but I didn’t expect to see such a dramatic increase in viewership as occurred two days ago.

When I started my cunning marketing plan 3 or 4 months ago, my daily average view count on Flickr was about 200. Yesterday, my stats showed over 2000 views.

Until Thursday last week, I had managed to increase the views to around 700-800 per day through various simple means:

  • I changed my posting pattern so that I never post more than 2 images per day. If I do a shoot and produce a dozen pictures, I now trickle them onto Flickr over a couple of weeks rather than upload them all at once. This allows my images to appear in my contacts “Your Contacts” list more often since this list only shows either 1 or 5 images from each contact.
  • I set up a Twitterfeed account and set it to tweet on any new post to Flickr.
  • I set up my new photoblog and similarly linked it Twitter via Twitterfeed. I also ensured that links to my other sites and Flickr appeared on each of the photoblog pages.
  • I started adding links to this blog, Twitter and my photoblog to all my Flickr postings.

These steps seem to have increased viewership by about 300-400% which is pretty impressive but what about the huge jump on Friday this week? Flickr stats showed a huge number of hits on 2 particular images but the source of these hits was marked as unknown. Only after a bit more thought did I remember that I had submitted these pictures to the CoolIris Inc, Beyond the Browser group. Images accepted into this group appear on the “Photos of the Day” page if you click the relevant link under “Discover” when you open the CoolIris viewer (which, if you haven’t seen it, is definitely worth a look). It seems that every view via this tool counts towards your Flickr total and I had 3 images in the first two pages on Friday. In addition to the huge increase in viewership for these images, I also noticed a drag effect with other images also seeing significantly higher view counts than usual – people must have been clicking through the image on CoolIris to get to the original Flickr page then wandering around my photostream to see what else was there.

I’m pretty sure the CoolIris effect won’t be sustainable since the group is likely to get a lot more popular as people find out about it and, as a moderated group, only some of the submitted pictures will be accepted but, for the time being, it has doubled my viewer stats for next to no effort.

Oh, I forgot to mention the significance of the picture I posted above. This is one of the images I took during an interesting 90 minutes at Allens Boots on South Congress this past Wednesday evening but has the greater distinction of being my 50th image in Flickr’s “Explore”, the daily list of the 500 “most interesting” images posted to the site. You can see the whole set here or as a single mosaic image here.

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The Joys of Automatic Translation

by on Apr.25, 2009, under Computer, Miscellaneous

I just received a rather odd message via Flickr mail. It was from an Italian photographer advertising one of his images. It was also in Italian, a language which is not my best (I barely know how to order beer in Italy let alone carry on a conversation about photography). As I usually do, I headed over to Yahoo Babelfish (or http://babelfish.altavista.com as it used to be – oddly, the “legacy URL” still works nicely) and pasted in the text. The final paragraph of the original message was:

“Flickr è la migliore applicazione per la gestione e la condivisione di foto online. Se sei curioso di sapere per che cosa lo utilizzo, guarda il mio profilo oppure naviga tra il mio album.”

…and the web site translated this as:

“Flickr is the best application for the management and the sharing of photo online. If you are curious of knowing for I use it what, watches my profile or is annoying between my egg whites.”

I do find unsolicited messages like this rather annoying (though I think this was the first example of Flickr spam I have seen) but, in this case, it ended up having great entertainment value and didn’t disturb my egg whites at all.

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