Flickr Fills Social Media Marketing’s Bill
Flickr’s had an on-again off-again relationship with photographers over the years. What started as a stand-alone cloud service that debuted in 2004 and catered to the professional market with a paid option, was pushed to the background after being acquired by Yahoo in 2005 right before the dot-com bubble popped.
When Yahoo hired Marissa Mayer as CEO to shake up the troubled social-news-entertainment-search URL, she moved quickly to revamp the languishing photo-sharing asset, turning it into what it is today – a fully functional resource for all photographers that offers 1TB of free storage to every Flickr member.
no shortage of online storage options
While there’s no shortage of free storage silos – from Apple to Google to Dropbox and more – Flickr’s got a lot more going for it today than just online access, with the latest upgrade – Flickr 4.0 – catering especially to the mobile market as well as desktop users with swoopy new utilities.
The latest round of upgrades features a fresh textual filter that allows selective image recognition filtering even if the image isn’t tagged with matching text. Your search term “red tomato” is recognized even if the red tomato isn’t tagged. Green wheelbarrow? Covered. And the returns are quick, no waiting in line.
Earlier this year they debuted Camera Roll, a feature that automatically displays a user’s images chronologically that also packs a powerful search punch, while automatic grouping of images on upload is another tweak aimed at promoting greater utilization and engagement.
Fresh mobile apps are also coming out, making the continued transformation from what began as a storage solution into a fully implemented social channel a reality that while it doesn’t pose a threat to Facebook operates perfectly within its own sphere of devotees.
social media marketing metadata options
When a user takes the time and has the insight to implement the powerful metadata opportunities offered by the service, Flickr becomes a social media marketing superhero. By taking advantage of albums for event grouping, headline, location, description, and various other available tags, users turn visual content into easily searchable content that can stand alone as unique content or be cross-referenced to bolster online content elsewhere.
Power users like Josh Hallett’s hyku stream, with over 25,000 images online, illustrate how adept Flickr is at dealing with quantity.
The Commons project is Flickr’s collection of free public domain imagery from the Library of Congress and other sources. Flickr can also filter Creative Commons licenses, including free to use with various restrictions.
For me, Flickr is the perfect still companion to YouTube’s emphasis on video, and a solid addition to a well-rounded social media marketing strategy.