It’s estimated that the average American sees up to 5,000 advertisements every day. Most of these ads are image based, which means we are bombarded with hundreds of photographic messages every hour.
You may have the best product in the world with the best story behind it, but that doesn’t mean anyone will give your brand, your story, or your company two seconds of their precious attention. Often, the best you can hope for is a fleeting glance.
Honestly, who can blame them? You’re asking for the one thing that matters most to people: time.
People scroll through Facebook and Instagram at the speed of light. They vacantly drive past hundreds of billboards every day. They sit idly watching television, hit the mute button and walk to the kitchen during commercial breaks. They’re searching for something impactful, something meaningful to grab their attention.
When a buyer experiences your marketing they make a split-second subconscious decision about how much time they want to give you. All too often they turn away.
Simply put, no one has the the mental bandwidth for an uninspiring pitch.
They only stop and look when something stands out. That precious moment is only earned through the power of great photography.
Why Custom Photography Matters
It’s easy to find an image on a stock website that you feel tells the world who you are. Before you do that though, let me caution you: your brand is more than a product or a service.
Your brand is your story.
There are reasons why people choose one burger shop over another. They buy Nike instead of Adidas. They drive a Chevy instead of a Ford. There’s a reason why people choose you rather than a competitor.
You might think it’s price or location or even because you spent the most on marketing and advertising. All of that certainly helps. But in reality, the real reason people choose your brand and find it so appealing is because they feel like they know your company intimately. You’ve become friends.
The choice to invest in custom photography is the decision to boldly tell your story in an original and heartwarming way that establishes a deep connection with the viewer. Each image gives you a unique place in the world and in people’s hearts. It is a specific moment in time directly relevant to your brand’s story. The context is purely yours.
Stock photos, while beautiful in their own right, are taken in a way that gets used and reused for commercial purposes. As such, the image is applied in ways that lose its original context. It’s a flat representation of your brand.
Even worse is when the stock photo you selected to tell your story appears in another company’s marketing… sometimes even your competitors’.
Show me something new
Lest you call us hypocrites, we use stock photos, too. Our blog is full of them. But when it comes to representing who we truly are, what we do, and what our brand means, we break out equipment to shoot something original.
That’s because we know that the secret to great marketing is to produce photos that present what we do in a way that is different than what people experience every day.
Subscription box services perfectly illustrate this philosophy. To demonstrate their products, they purposely lay out each piece in an orderly fashion on a clean table. These companies know that the lives of average people are not so clean and tidy. The presentation is so appealing you’re driven to say, “I want that!” because who doesn’t want a box of products that could bring some kind of order to your life?
Everyday we see flowers, dogs and children from our normal vantage point. We tilt our heads down to look at them. However, when seen from the ground, that same flower, dog, or child suddenly becomes fascinating. We’re not used to seeing them from that angle, and when we do our eyes are opened to discover these commonplace objects in new and unfamiliar ways. The same technique applies when we seeing tall things from above.
Almost everything can be shown in a different way to make it interesting. From oilfield services to medical procedures, everything can be presented in a manner that catches the viewer off guard and forces them to take a second look. The images linger. The meaning is processed for days.
Applied to marketing, when you use custom photography your brand leaves an indelible mark on the viewer that inspires top of mind awareness and a long lasting impression. Sales are directly correlated to the amount of time the buyer spends on a website. When a photo ignites the imagination of your buyer they move forward to buy.
The thought and attention to detail that is put into an image finds its way into the emotional center of your customer’s brain. It connects with them in ways that a stock photo cannot. People prefer quality over inferior value, and they’re naturally moved to take action when they see it.
The key to quality photography involves lighting a photo in a way that makes it interesting, carefully setting the scene, and posing the subjects in ways that both follow and break the rules of composition in order to create compelling visual interest. These little details matter. When applied to your brand, it tells a story that is unique to you.
When a photo is well lit, when it’s clear, when it’s obviously not just a selfie, people automatically assign a higher value to what that photo represents.
What is your brand worth? What is the service you provide worth? What are you worth? Honestly, you are worth great photography.
Need to a marketing team to help you “stop the scroll”? Give us a call. We’re here to help.