I collected a few thoughts on how to prepare to start taking good images for your business
For some time now, I am thinking about can anyone take good images for their business? Is everyone can do it well? You may find that some people have a more artistic soul and a good eye to spot the right situation, composition and the story. If you may not have any and still achieve solid results. If you understand which images your business need, get decent skills in camera handling and editing.
To make good business pictures you will learn not only the camera skills but also how to make the images for your business with an intended purpose. To make a good impression, send a clear and positive message and tell the story you want to share with your audience.
Creating your images more like a marathon than a sprint
Where do you start? How to prepare to understand and make good business photography.
Check what you already have! Do you have a :
- camera – do you know and understand the camera you already have? Do you know what to look for if you do a lot of evening and club photos or you want to use for property portfolio?
- do you know how to use your camera efficiently? Can you use manual, Tv or Av mode? With automatic mode, you will get average results,
- do you understand the image composition, the focal point and importance of light and shutter speed,
- editing software – do you already have any editing software,
- do you know how to use the editing software for the intended purpose (knowing a specific thing like how to remove a background or image manipulation),
- what editing software is best for YOUR needs,
- what do you know about visual content marketing,
- do you understand the importance of images in marketing,
- how do you approach your branding – do you know what it is and understand the importance of it? Do you have a strategy written down? Do you do it yourself or have an expert involved?
When you check all above, start your checklist. Complete the big job by preparing what you have and need first. I will start in a reverse other. Why? I learned it the hard way that it’s better to check if the camera and lenses fit the purpose, not the other way.
Learning the importance of branding
Picture of coca cola linth chocolate and nescafe coffee
What is s a branding?
According to the BusinessDictionary is the process involved in creating a unique name and image for a product in the consumers’ mind, mainly through advertising campaigns with a consistent theme. Branding aims to establish a significant and differentiated presence in the market that attracts and retains loyal customers.
Consider Creating Great Customer – Brand Connections and support it with the marketing management process through which goods and services move from concept to the customer. It includes the coordination of four elements called the 4 P’s of marketing:
- identification, selection and development of a product,
- determination of its price,
- selection of a distribution channel to reach the customer’s place, and
- development and implementation of a promotional strategy.
Learning the importance of images in content marketing
According to Forbes contributor, Jayson DeMers readers’ eyes are naturally drawn to images. Images have great potential for improving your inbound traffic through SEO, but most people overlook them. You know images are crucial to getting a reader’s immediate attention, and you know how to use them to get a little extra fuel for SEO. It might take you some time to find the right images for your posts, but it’s worth the additional effort. Low quality, unprofessional photos on your website and media will communicate the same about your organization and the products and services you offer.
Learning about visual content marketing
Mallory (Blumer) Walsh wrote for a Forbes Communications Council an article on Redefining The Role Visuals Play In Your Marketing Strategy where she indicates that brands need to redefine the ways – and the reasons why – they deliver content to consumers. Instead of writing content and then searching for an image that will accentuate the subject matter, marketers need to evolve in their relationship with the visual content they serve. Since visuals are often the most immediately engaging aspect of any piece with written content, they need to become the star of the show. Demand Gen Report’s “2015 Content Preferences Survey,” which surveyed 177 business-to-business buyers, found that 91% of people prefer more visual content that can be accessed on-demand.
Not to look far if you look through the internet for the specific topic you usually click on the picture which resonates with your problem and then you start reading or watching.
Researching and Investing in editing software
Sometimes, bigger means better and works well because if you purchase or get a free version, you need to make sure that you will be able to learn the software easily, fast and the product have a large community to produce a video or written content on as many topics as possible. You can ask HOW TO whatever you stuck, struggle or look for inspiration.
Not what you expected to hear? Well, time is money and you could invest better elsewhere. Not well research product may stop you to produce the desired outcome fairly quick. Will you agree with that? I hope so. Start looking for the long going and popular software even if doesn’t have all recommended by professionals features. I use Photoshop and this is MY why;
Search Volume Statistics – I used Keywords Everywhere to support what I am going to explain. I look at a list of the best editing software by Digital Camera World and I entered the software name in Google to see the search volume return and search per month, meaning how many times someone typed the same or similar question seeking for the answers. This should give an idea of how many returns are and popular software is:
- Adobe Photoshop CC – Photoshop – 128,000,000 results and 4,090,000/mo
- Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Classic/CC – Lightroom Classic – 19,800,000 results and 3,620/mo
- Affinity Photo 1.7 (Affinity Photo) – 128,000,000 results and 18,900/mo
- PhaseOne Capture One Pro 12 – PhaseOne Capture – 7,090,000 results and 140/mo
- DxO PhotoLab 2.3 – DxO PhotoLab- 320,000 results and 3,040/mo
Looking at the results above the Photoshop and Affinity Photo are fairly well-documented and you can presume the internet will have a lot of solutions for your problems if you need it. You may look in more detail at them.
Investing in editing Training programs (H2)
You can get a similar approach when you look at the software. How I can learn it? The more popular and long going program the more help you may find out there. Compare the resources before you purchase the editing software for it you may check for the training at eg. Udemy, LinkedIn Learning and of course YouTube. The more popular software the biggest research and better-documented data pool.
Research best camera to buy for your needs
The best camera for your needs the best for what you will need it for. Before you invest, check the gear you already have first! Test what you can and cannot do with it and write the pros and cons of the particular features. I have 3 compact cameral all with the full wheel P Av Tv, manual and Video modes. The difference is not always in the price, as all cost about £250 new (one was a displayed model with £100 discount) but what the make my cameras likeable for me is the speed so when I look at the front camera leave I can see different letters and numbers which may mean nothing to you until you know and understand what they mean and what you camera can and cannot do for you.
Picture of my all cameras
I found a few less frequently asked questions you may want to answer before you start to research.
What is your business about? The wellbeing, training, outdoors indoors kids, pets e-commerce etc. If you have more than one business write them all.
Which quality of pictures do you need – for website media engagement blogging?
Where the pictures be taken? Is it crucial to choose the right camera is the condition the camera body needs to survive – dust, water, heat. The lens specifics -does the object moves, maybe it doesn’t move but it is taken in the low light condition?
All of the have a specifications display in the shop or online BUT they tell you only what it is good about it and not what you need to know to make a knowledgeable choice. You need to take some time to make your private research and put them in excel and where possible use websites where you may choose a few cames and store compare the parameters in the same manners.
Can I buy additional gear? You may need some spare batteries, dust or water protector, interchangeable lenses and how much they cost. You will need a tripod of some sort (a tripod is a three-legged camera stand) therefore camera needs a tripod mount. You may need to fire the camera remotely or to reduce camera shake or make own picture without outstretched arm and ending with a distorted face.
What the best cameras have in common?
Sturdy body, lightweight detachable lenses and lenses aF-stopdapter, quick-swap batteries, external charger – use one charge one. That I always take into account for all of my cameras. Te are some key features
- The mode dial (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mode_dial)
- Wide ISO sensitivity (https://digital-photography-school.com/iso-settings/)
- Aperture go as low as you can afford it! Yep, it can double or triple the price if your camera. That is why to know if you need it or not.
- Good range of shutter speed (https://www.digitalcameraworld.com/tutorials/cheat-sheet-which-shutter-speed-should-you-be-using)
- A good number of pixels (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pixel)
- 4K video quality you may want to make the promotional materials.
Pick three to five cameras with similar specifications but different prices to start. Then chose the specification you cannot jeopardise. Take into account that you will need some accessories with it too.
Do you need it all or just some? Anyway, you may use only 20% of what you get due to time constrain.
Investing in a Good Camera
When most of the work is done. It comes to the point where you need to make a decision, how much you want and can spend. If the camera you want is expensive check prices of new and used and then decide? Cash or finance? Places like Jessops, Currys Argos, Camera World Uk, different in different countries will have it online or shops with finances. Who pays for it you or your business? What is your cut of the price?
Investing in in-camera training programs
I am thinking about time investment more than financial because even expensive program and will not help you if you don’t have time to learn from it. And you may learn what you need for the specific task. If you have an e-commerce shop you really may want only quality images to keep you on the top of the game. Learn how to make a product or still life photography only for now.
If you master new skills soon you may replace all the photographs in your shop. Start from the ones that you have many of the same product, for example. Put the sales data on the graph to see changes. Use excel if you don’t have and VA or accountant who can do it for you.
Wellbeing, personal fitness or business coach – a little more learning how to compose a readable message which resonates with your ideal client. Think why are you different and don’t try to impress everyone but focus on your niche you may find clients that identify with you. You images should communicate with them.
Professional photographers spent years learning about the profession so you should expect to beat them up in a week.
There is a lot you can do to enhance your website, social media and other marketing materials. Check what you have, use a camera until it breaks, learn what it can and cannot do for you. Research and understand branding, marketing and visual content. Invest in camera and software and learn all you must, to be efficient with it. Remember to check your stats, SEO, sale, web visits and engagements, etc. Numbers don’t lie and if you don’t like it, check with marketing expert as you may miss something you didn’t even think of.
Thank you for reading