Good morning/afternoon, Digihaute fans and the sunshine of our lives! Today on DH we’re going to talk about sunsets! Andrew Karl and Danny Rice, Co-founders of @Venice_Sunsets (VS) took a little time out of their busy schedules being SoCal role-models and exhibiting model-behavior of social media influencers!
Andrew and Danny quickly realized there was an opportunity to share this habit of snapping moments of beauty and turn it into a passion, by socially-shelling out one sunset at time for anyone to treasure, no matter where they were in the world.
DH: Start from the beginning…
VS: A green flash is not a myth but in fact an emerald colored jewel of natural phenomenon occurring in only the rarest of sunsets. The moment just before the sun dips under a distant horizon, the orb burns bright green. A relentless hunt for this green flare resulted in daily trips to the beach, and and addiction to beautiful vibrations and expressions of gratitude. VS was born millions of miles away in the fiery belly of our closest white-hot star.
DH: Do you have a certain process or algorithm that you can link your impressive social-media following and success to?
VS: Ultimately the formula is simple. We deliver what we promise. If you follow us, you will get beautiful sunset photos of world famous Venice Beach every day. People tend to understand this value proposition instantly.
Not without hard-work, innovative tactics, and of course the stunning muse that is Venice, Ca., VS gained tens of thousands of followers at a steady, admirable, and quite impressive pace, even for very recent new media standards. The team started showing up on the radar for Southern California Tech and Digital influencers like Digital LA’s, Founder and Managing Partner, Kevin Winston who featured them on a panel of Instagram experts this past spring.
Most recently, über popular (you know ‘em, we love ‘em) The Chive published VS as it’s #22 pick of top Instagram accounts to follow. How ’bout them apples?
VS: We initially didn’t know we had made their list. We just saw a waterfall of new followers. It was really cool. We’ve always been huge fans of The Chive, so it was super flattering they noticed all the hard work we put in every day.
DH: Ok boys, Instagram tips and tricks – spill ‘em. Let’s do this.
VS: HASHTAGS! They are the life-force of Instagram. Use the maximum 30 allowed in each post about relevant keywords for your brand or industry. There are plenty of hashtag generators out there. VBS uses Instag and TagsforLikes.
People who knew nothing of our brand, were able to find us and connect with the same passion points we have. I also think it’s important to ‘own’ a branded hashtag, so people can use it to rally around your brand like ours #venice_sunsets. It will start showing in hashtag generators if you have enough people using and growing the momentum.
Know what you stand for. Are you funny? Are your pictures dope? Do you only shoot old doors and gates? You have about one-second to catch people’s attention and one more second for them to understand what you’re about. In order for someone to follow you they must get something out of it; a value proposition.
No matter what you’re into, there are millions of people on Instagram who are passionate about the same thing and will welcome you as a voice in their community with a follow, so make it easy and make it clear.
DH: So what’s the end goal for VS?
VS: We’ve always had two main goals.
1. Bring people moments of solace with beautiful distractions.
2. Monetize the brand to give back to the community. Social responsibility is very important to us. It might sound silly, but we really believe it’s our way of contributing and leaving the world a little better and more beautiful place.
DH: So one final question for our sunset boys….DH wants to know, what’s the meaning of life?
VS: Obviously art, beauty, and spreading positive vibrations!