Photography for Your Business
A picture is worth a thousand words. Although you’ve probably heard this saying before, I’m sure there are some of you who’ve never considered how this relates to your business! Our world is increasingly digital and visual, therefore, pictures have become increasingly valuable and necessary to marketing a business well.
A popular example of this is how many restaurants today are overlooked based on the images they use to market their food. You may not think this relates to the industry you serve, however, Industrial Marketer found evidence that 60% of consumers who use online search say they prefer to contact a business whose listing includes an image. Consider also that as mobile searches are continuing to outnumber desktop searches, images are often understood and received better than text content.
You only have one opportunity to engage a web visitor, make it count.
So, how should you go about accomplishing this?
Go to the Pros
The most effective, and naturally most costly, method of photographing your business would be to hire a creative agency or professional photographer to take pictures of your dealership, including staff, equipment, scenery, etc. This will give online visitors a 360-degree view of what doing business with you is really like. You want to make sure this imagery is in line with your brand identity- whether or not this is strictly or loosely defined. Brand identity is the overall look and feel of your company, colors you use for marketing your business, etc.
Budgeting might be tight for marketing your business in general, nonetheless for photography. However, your business goals may not be achieved without convincing visual reinforcement that your business is the best business for your target audience to partner with. This could impact your overall reputation and brand identity. A recent industry-related brand renovation has happened within Mack Truck’s corporation. They have completely revolutionized their brand identity, not only their look and feel, but especially in the photography they use throughout their campaign. Just check out this video and the photos below and observe how well it represents the lifestyle of their brand AND end user.
As Stephen Roy, the President of Mack, points out in this video, it’s less about having to revolutionize your company, and more about the evolution of your company. Evolving your brand to reach a wider audience and building upon a solid foundation of who you are, will help you engage your target audience. Iconic is the word these Mack representatives from different countries use in their video and iconic is what you should aspire to.
The Alternative, Stock Imagery
Although there are some great free sites that offer stock imagery, most of our industries are highly specific, making it much more difficult to find a stock photo that describes your business. Additionally, in part due to their popularity, stock photos are pretty noticeable, especially stock photos of personnel. If your business is aiming at becoming a brand that your customers can identify and connect with, your imagery should feel personal and include your actual personnel. So, even if you are able to scrounge up a few useful stock photos for your website and other marketing pieces, these should never take the place of well-documented business marketing photos long term.
With high-quality camera and editing capabilities available on most smartphones, you could capture some pretty decent pictures of your dealership yourself. If a professional photographer is not in your budget, combining the resources of your smartphone with stock imagery available online might be a reasonable second choice for marketing your business better. You might also want to utilize photo editing apps on your smartphone to increase the quality of these photos, such as Afterlight or VSCO Cam. We especially encourage you to always be taking pictures of your dealership and special events that you hold to post on social media.
If we’ve convinced you to go pro, here’s what’s next.
Build an inspiration page, including some competitors or manufacturers that you enjoy, to get a big picture of what you’re aiming for. Then, create a shot list of everything you’d like to photograph for your website or elsewhere. We highly encourage you to not only think of the products you want to showcase but the lifestyle of your dealership, the process, service, etc. As we’ve written before, your business should tell a story to your audience. How should they feel based on the mood your photos convey? After the photo shoot, go back to the drawing board and make sure to remove what doesn’t reflect your overall vision or brand identity.
For further discussion, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We love talking about branding and how visually you can make your business stronger!