HSC Influencer Series - Lisa Diederich
Lisa Diederich is a photographer and social media guru, operating from Nashville, TN. She operates a successful photography company that specializes in providing her clients with beautiful imagery and custom digital assets for print, website, and social media. She is also super-lovely and was willing to sit down with us and tell us a little about her professional journey that has taken her from one country to another- and then back again.
You can follow Lisa on Instagram at @lisadieder or check out her website here.
Tell us a little about yourself!
Where did you grow up and how did you get started in photography?
I grew up in Crown Point, Indiana which is about an hour south of Chicago and went to school at Butler University in Indianapolis where I studied marketing and business.
During my degree I had the opportunity to study abroad in Australia which I of course did (who wouldn’t, right?) and loved it so much that I ended up moving there a few years after graduating. It was there that I fell in love with Photography (and also my soon-to-be husband, Sam) and decided that it was something that I wanted to pursue professionally.
I was working full-time for an advertising agency in Sydney so I devoted my free time to developing my photography skills. I spent a lot of time second-shooting for professional photographers around Sydney and learned as much as I could through on-the-job experience; daunting but it was definitely a great way to fast-track my progress!
When did blogging become such an important part of your life? Is it a full-time thing for you or do you also work at another job?
I’m a professional photographer, first and foremost and I spend my days shooting portraits, products, and interiors for clients around the world. This naturally flows into social media and I use my website, blog and Instagram to promote my business.
You obviously love to travel. How do you balance work, life and travel?
It can get a little crazy at times! I travel a lot for work and sometimes we’ll be away for weeks at a time, come home for a couple of days and then jet off to the next location. It’s very fun but it can definitely take it’s toll if we’re not organized. Luckily, Sam and I get to travel together for work most of the time so that makes things a little easier on us.
When you work with brands, are you creating content especially for Instagram or are you also providing your clients with full content galleries for multiple platforms?
It depends on the arrangement that I have with the client. I work really hard to understand exactly what the client is looking for and how I can help them achieve their goals for their business. Not all photos are suitable for use on every platform (whether that's print, digital or social) and being aware of each medium's strengths and limitations is really important.
How do you start working with brands? Do you reach out to them or do they typically reach out to you?
These days it’s a combination of both. I’m always working hard and reaching out to potential clients and I get my share of inquiries too. There’s no such thing as wasted time when opening new lines of conversation, because you never know when it could turn into a new and exciting collaboration or project!
You have such a beautifully clean photographic style and your edits are amazing too. How much artistic freedom do you have when it comes to fulfilling the clients brief?
My clients all know and understand my aesthetic, so stylistically I have a lot of freedom. But I also feel it's important to help create the client's aesthetic. While I personally love bright, minimalistic photos, a client's brand may call for dark and moody! There also might be an important feature or angle to highlight, so I also need to make sure that I’m always paying careful attention to the details.
Where do you find inspiration for you posts? How do you manage to come up with enough content to post each day?
Life really is the greatest inspiration! Sam and I are so busy that there’s always something fun to shoot and share on Instagram. Plus, we have a cocker spaniel/poodle (Toby) that provides an endless amount of entertainment. Coffee, cocktails, house renovations, travel - it never ends!
Instagram has undergone a lot of changes in the last couple of years. New algorithms, advertising, etc. Has this had an impact on your work at all, for better or worse?
I have seen a distinct difference in how visible my posts are now and that has had an effect on my engagement, overall. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing but I would love to see Instagram go back to chronological posting.
What would you say is the best advice or tip to build your business/ following on Instagram?
Stay active and relevant. Only post quality content. Engage with other users and they will engage with you! Avoid looking too "addy" or promotional and make sure that your brand voice is your own: unique and relatable.
In your opinion, how do you see the “business” of blogging changing over the next few years? Do you think that Influencers will always have such a strong role in marketing?
I think that influencers will always have a part to play in marketing. There is nothing more powerful than recommendations from peers and word of mouth advertising. However, many companies are still getting used to this way of promoting their business. As they become more comfortable with the territory, I think that there might be a shift in expectations. Brands will expect a lot more, budgets will change and the number of influencers for brands to choose from will keep growing. I think it's important for influencers to know the value of their work!
Any more advice for budding bloggers?
Do it because you love it, not because you have to. Passion and authenticity are what translate across the screen and if you’re producing great content and you’re effective on social media, then you’ll be effective for your clients also.