I am amazed at the number of low quality photos I encounter online and in print advertising. Just as the Lord reminded Samuel when he said, “Man looks at the outward appearance.” (1 Samuel 16:7, NASB); your customers will look at product pictures and form conclusions.
When you want to use photos to display a product, consider the camera angle that shows the product best. Is a direct shot better or is a side shot work more effective? Also, look for ways to photograph the product in use. Generally, the better you demonstrate the product in use, the better the photo communicates to the customer. Don’t just photograph a boat for sale while it sits idly docked at the marina. Show the boat running in a lake. Make sure the picture gives a complete view of the product and its use.
Next, use good lighting. Shadows detract from your picture. Anything that detracts is an obstacle to sales. Use a floodlight for more light. Or take a picture when the light is at its natural best. Insure that the lighting allows customers to see the product clearly.
Real estate photos are often an example of poor quality pictures. The real estate agent may take the pictures only once. If the sun is on the front, you get a good curb picture; but a lousy back yard shot with shadows. Better to ask the agent to come back twice and get a full range of shots with proper lighting. I have been amazed when an expensive home lists using poor pictures.
Clarity is important. Use a camera with good resolution. Your phone’s camera may be acceptable when sending pictures to friends; but generally you need better resolution for business pictures. Buy or borrow a good camera.
Consider using a professional photographer to upload pictures for catalog or advertising. I had one client spend over $5,000 in newspaper ads using a dark, fuzzy image for a picture. A professional photographer could have corrected this for $100 and produced much better results. Take a look at Craig’s listings for furniture. See the difference between those with good, well-composed pictures and those without? Which ads are you more likely to answer?
This goes for people pictures too. Use photographs of you and your staff that show everyone in the best way possible. Pictures are one of your best sales representatives. Make sure they reflect the quality of the products and services you want to sell.
Steve Marr, Your Christian Business Coach
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