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Friday, October 9, 2009

How to Find Awesome Hunting and Fishing Photos Online

Guest Post By Dayne Shuda of Hunting Business Marketing


Dayne Shuda is the founder and main contributor at Hunting Business Marketing – a resource for hunting businesses that includes tips, tutorials, and a question & answer forum where hunting industry leaders can learn to market their businesses effectively. Dayne is also the author of the Hunting Business Marketing The Book – Simple strategies for marketing your hunting business on the Web. Connect with Dayne at HBM or on Twitter @DayneShuda.

If there is one thing that gets hunters talking, it’s a photo of a trophy buck.

My favorite thing about the Web is all of the technology that allows individuals to share and connect. For hunters, there are many great sites that allow users to post photos, comment in forums, read blog posts, read news articles, and even watch wonderful hunting videos like those at My Outdoor TV.

I was at the barbershop today getting my monthly trim and the barber, Shorty, had his trail camera photos right on the front counter for all of his friends and customers to see. They made for some great conversation. The entire time I was there we chatted about the bucks he sees near his cabin. He told me about how the bucks like to sit on the benches or saddles on the bluff ridges. We talked about the different bucks he has seen including one that seems to be eluding his cameras this season.

I realized that hunting and outdoor photography is something powerful enough to connect hunters. The Web has allowed hunters to share photos and stories of the outdoors with other hunters who share the same passion all over the world.

While there are lots of Websites that offer photo galleries for your hunting and outdoor photos, there are some sites that make things easy and more enjoyable.

Let’s look at a few places where you can find quality hunting photos on the Web and a few reasons why some online hunting and outdoor photo galleries have more success…

Where to Find Quality Hunting Photos

There are generally two ways I find out about hunting photos on the Web:

1 Referral – this usually is via a mass email chain, from a friend who got a big buck on his camera, or from someone else who is sharing a friend of a friend of a friend’s photo

2 Search – I like to search each season for news on big bucks taken around the US

The hunting sites that make it easy to share photos in their galleries are usually the ones who see the most growth and traffic (more on this later). Hunters who are passionate about trophies and remarkable photos tend to want to share the photos with all of their friends if they can because when we share something remarkable with our friends we feel good. It gives us a sense of purpose or accomplishment when we can share a discovery with our peers. Referring is big on the Web and I’m sure you have experienced sharing of outdoor photos. Look for how photos are being shared and look for any site that is making it easiest for people to share photos. The sites that make it easiest will usually be the most successful. This means they’ll also have the most remarkable photos.

Search is the other way I generally find hunting photos. I’m a fan of Google, and Google’s Image Search is very good for finding the most relevant photos. However, it doesn’t always return the best images so I like to use Google’s generic search to find a few sites offering hunting photos. Google does a good job of showing the most relevant sites.

Here are a few of the best places I’ve been able to find hunting photos:

Field & Stream Photos
I subscribe to Field & Streams email newsletter and they do a great job of incorporating their user photos into their email newsletter. The photo galleries have great photos. The functionality is a little cumbersome and I think it could be even more of a success with a few basic functionality changes. For example, users can only comment on entire galleries rather than individual photos.

Bowhunting.com Photos
Bowhunting.com’s photo gallery is easy to use. Users are also able to comment on individual photos. It’s a clean and simple way to look at great bow hunting-related photos.

Flickr
Flickr might not be the first place most hunters go to look at remarkable photos of the outdoors and hunting, but there are some spectacular photos available for viewing. There is a Deer Group. There are also photos for outdoor bloggers to use in blog posts (with attribution).

Image credit: ibm4381

Facebook
Facebook is also a place you may not have thought of for great outdoor and hunting photos. Facebook is actually the largest photo sharing site on the Web with billions of photos. There are lots of groups dedicated to things like Hunting Photos.

Here are some other top sites for hunting photos:

HuntingPictures.net

TrophyPhotos.com

HuntingNet Photo Gallery

MyBuckStory.com

Elements for Quality Photo Display

A few of the things I look for when it comes to finding the best hunting and outdoor photo galleries on the Web include elements like:

1 Zoom
2 Commenting
3 Rating
4 View Counter
5 Sharing Features (Email, Post on Blog, Share on Facebook, Retweet This Photos, Stumble This, etc.)
6 Thumbnail previews of categories with individual, up-close viewing (I like Flickr’s setup best)

These are a few important things to look for in a quality hunting photo gallery. The sites that have some or most of these features are the ones that tend to have the most traffic and subsequently the best photos on t he Web.

Word of Mouth

Earlier I mentioned the importance of sharing. When it comes to something remarkable like a photo of a hunter with a trophy buck, viewers want to have the ability to share their discovery with their friends and family.

One technology on the Web realized the importance of making sharing quality visual content easy for users and as a result became one of the largest sharing sites on the Web.

You Tube Story

You Tube became one of the largest Video sharing sites on the Web not because it was the sexiest or because it had the best features.

You Tube became a success because it was easy for users to upload videos as well as being easy for users to share.

Next to each video on You Tube were Embed Code, URL, and Email to a Friend information. Since the beginning, it was easy for viewers of videos on You Tube to share photos on their own sites and via email (and other content sharing sites like Digg, Facebook, and Twitter, which came later).

I think a hunting photo gallery could truly become the largest hunting photo sharing site on the Web by putting a form next to each photo in the gallery with the heading “Email This Photo to Your Friends”. All users would have to do is type in email addresses into the form and hit “Send”. Without leaving the page the user could easily send remarkable photos to friends and family while never leaving the gallery (allowing them to view and share even more photos).

Summary

The Web is about connecting with other individuals who share similar passions.

For hunters and outdoor lovers, photos are a great way to share experiences and memories. There are many great photo galleries on the Web that make it easy to share and discover photos.

Look for the best ones and start sharing and discovering. There are lots of remarkable things to see on the Web including hunting and outdoor photography.

What are your favorite outdoor photo sharing sites?

Share them in the comments and give the rest of a us a chance to see some trophies. J

3 comments:

Steven said...

Thanks Ben. Good article. I agree "hunting photos" are always fun and never get old.

Dayne said...

I'm glad you liked it Steven. Perhaps we should do a post here that includes our own pics.

hog hunting said...

congrats ben i will appreciate to you future post in this type of important posts.these huntintg photos are very excellent.

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