New Year, New Website Photos
Happy new year, everyone! I’m not a huge fan of new year’s resolutions, but I know many people have ‘update my website’ on their list of things to do for 2019. In today’s blog, I have a few website photography tips to guarantee you put your best self out there in 2019.
My last shoot of 2018 was to photograph Gra Bar Fish Company, a Queens-based fish supplier and preparer to some of the best restaurants in New York City. The company had a basic website but as business was booming Gra Bar Fish found they needed to up their social media game. Organic Communications, the public relations firm working with Gra Bar Fish Company, gave me a call and we had a wonderful working experience that produced some fantastic images for their website. After a quick 24-hour turnaround of all the images from the four-hour shoot, here are my top four website photography tips.
Know what you want ahead of time. I’m a photographer, not a mind reader. I can take great images for you, but if they don’t coincide with your company’s branding, then the images are useless to your marketing team. What works for one company may not work for your company. So think long and hard about your marketing strategy ahead of the shoot. In the case of Gra Bar Fish Company, they were very clear that they wanted a group of images that showed how the company workplace was clean, organized, professional and friendly.
Authenticity is key. Using stock images is so 1990s. If you’re using images that can be found on anyone else’s website, you are guaranteeing that customers are going to pass you by. Realness is what sells. So know what defines you and your company’s values, and then work with your photographer to make those values a visual reality. Make sure that your images reflect the personal service you strive to provide each customer. And to this end, documentary-style photography is key. Showing the way you ‘make the doughnuts,’ so to speak, are the images that customers love. Your clients want to go peek behind the curtain and see what makes you tick. Be the anti-Amazon and go for images that you can’t get anywhere else.
Be on the same visual page. Before I booked the shoot with Gra Bar Fish, I sent Organic Communications a portfolio of images I had taken from the Aberdeen Fish Market in Hong Kong. (I have something of a specialty in travel photography of photographing fish markets, in case you were curious.) The documentary style of my images is what won me the account and gave the client insight into how I would tackle the job. Photographers are visual people, and I think it’s always helpful to put together a visual mood board with a client so that you know exactly what you are aiming for with the visual branding. Pinterest is a great way to exchange images with clients, and I also put together a portfolio is in my client galleries.
Ask the website designer what you need. The PR firm I worked with was fantastic because they had thought about the shot list from the top down. My contact had worked with her website designer and gotten a list of all the types of images she needed, from background photos to headshots of the staff. Often times, it’s the small detail shots that will be left off a shot list because the marketing people didn’t consider the needs of the website designer. There’s nothing worse than getting ready to put together your website and realizing you’re missing some key images that you need for specific pages.
Give your photographer a detailed game plan. When I worked with Gra Bar Fish Company, I asked ahead of time for a shot list to make sure I captured all the images they wanted. Organic Communications gave me a detailed list, from the list of portraits to the exact style of images. This included wide shots of every action taken by their team in the process of preparing fish: cleaning, filleting, and packaging. Other images on the list were close-up shots of workers handling the fish and detail shots of the fish itself. Finally, Organic Communications was clear that they needed mainly horizontal shots since the majority of the images were to serve the new website. The more detailed you get with your shot list, the more likely you are to get an exact return of what you want.
The new year is finally here, so if you’ve been meaning to make a new website then give me a call and let’s start the year off right with some new photos.
If you’d like to see more images from my corporate portfolio, then please visit my website – www.KellyWilliamsCorporate.com