We’ll take our own photos and videos???

I was speaking with a prospect today regarding their website. Their business is down since most of their revenue is tied up with 3 customers. We discussed the need for them to upgrade their website and create a marketing campaign to generate new customers. They were looking to save money and were thinking about taking their own photos instead of hiring a professional to do the job.

Unfortunately, I have heard this before. The last place you want to cut corners in online marketing is with your visual image and particularly photography. It’s what’s going to make the viewer stop and take notice of your website, ad or post. It’ll make them pause long enough to read your headline, look at your message and delve deeper into your content.
So, why would you put an image on your website or social media that’s not going to cut through the online noise?
Having professional images created of your business, products, personnel and processes demonstrates to your prospects that you care about your presentation and take pride in what you offer to your customers. This translates to the same care you’ll give to them.

Professional photographers/video producers know how to make your business come to life, convey your story clearly, and compel your prospects to stop and take notice.
When using a professional photographer/video producer there are a few things you want to do before you hire them.

  • Look at their website to see if they have experience creating images/videos you are looking for. IE: If they shoot weddings and you need products photographed find someone else
  • See if their style matches your brand.
  • Make a list of the photos you want  – if you are working with a marketing company or coach have them help you create the list. If it’s a video know where it will be used and who the audience is.
  • Create a budget and be willing to modify it, if necessary, to get the results you are looking for. It’s not unusual for clients not to know what’s really involved in the production of photographs or video. I’ve often found that if the budget is the most important thing then there are things that can be modified to make it fit within the budget.
  • Once you’ve narrowed down the candidates have a conversation with each to see how they would approach your assignment.
  • Give the photographer/video producer as much information as you can about your business, your shot list and how the content will be used.
  • Pay attention to the personality of the photographer/video producer to make sure that it works with yours. Do they have a good understanding of what you are trying to accomplish? Are they offering you solutions to bring the project within budget? Are they willing to explain why something you are asking for won’t fit within your budget or time frame?
  • Be willing to share your budget with the photographer/video producer. This will give them a parameter to work within. It will also open the discussion to see if what you are asking for is realistic or not. The photographer/video producer should be able to offer up suggestions to either bring the project within budget or let you know a more realistic budget to consider.
  • Most of all when speaking with a photographer/video producer it’s a discussion not a lecture from them. If you don’t have a good feeling about them when you get off the phone then move on. Creating your photographs or videos is a partnership between the two of you – if you can’t work together as a team then it’s only going to end badly.

Hiring the right professional photographer/video producer will make your job much easier and save you time and money. What they produce is the visual image of your business and that translates directly into more sales for you.
Let me know your thoughts.