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How To Plan a Successful Business Photoshoot
Does your business need professional photography? Across all company sizes and industries, the answer is almost always “yes.”
Photography is valuable because it’s powerful and versatile. Imagery can have a huge impact on the way your audience thinks about your company, and it can fit into dozens of promotional, branding and marketing roles, both external and internal.
When your organization decides to invest in business photography, it’s best to take a disciplined and focused approach. This means working with professional photographers on well-planned photoshoots. While it may be tempting to assume amateur photos will suffice — especially in an era of powerful smartphone cameras — the value of an expert-run shoot shows through in the final product.
How Do Companies Get Value From Business Photography?
Before planning a business photoshoot, it pays to remember just why photos are so important for businesses today. Professional pictures taken by experts deliver value in a few distinct ways, most notably including:
- Becoming a brand storytelling tool: What kind of message does your company want to send about itself? Does your company want to cultivate an earthy image, or commit to sleek modernity? Are you invested in your community? Do you care about social causes? The story of your business is largely told in photos, from the images at the center of your marketing campaigns to the pictures on your website and social media channels.
- Performing a functional role online: In addition to becoming key elements of branding, photos are simply useful for companies across industries as versatile pieces of digital media. In today’s digital-first economy, customers often initially interact with businesses online. The first time a shopper sees an item may be in the form of an e-commerce product photo. A potential client might encounter an executive’s official portrait long before meeting them in person. High-quality photos can create a positive impression and build a strong bond between company and customer.
Pictures are the clearest way for your brand to communicate information and set a tone for its communications. Photos have physical applications — in advertising and on product packaging — as well as being essential components of an online branding strategy. By fulfilling all these roles, professional photos can have your company looking its best.
What Are the Major Types of Business Photoshoot?
Just as there are many ways to derive value from business photos, there’s a wide variety of photoshoot types to choose from. Each of them can deliver a specific kind of picture, fitting into a niche that’s just right for your business.
From static product shots to complex images that can only be captured with specialized equipment, you can cover a lot of stylistic ground with corporate photography. Here are some of the most popular and impactful photoshoot types to try:
- Corporate headshots: Hiring a professional photography crew to capture clear, well-lit photos of your employees should be a top priority, especially if your business depends on making personal connections with clients. The Forbes Business Council’s Adam Jacobs explained that potential customers are looking for corporate headshot photos that exude an air of professionalism, and self-taken pictures can be a liability in this regard.
- Product photography: Clear, functional product pictures can make or break an e-commerce site. Shopify recommends a product photography approach that displays all of an item’s features, as well as showing the item in action. Since online customers can’t really interact with the goods they’re considering, they need these photos to give them all the necessary info before committing to a purchase.
- Aerial or underwater shots: Sometimes, a business photoshoot requires specialized gear. A professional drone or submersible operator can capture great aerial or underwater pictures of your company’s buildings or other equipment. This is a must for businesses such as utilities facilities, where large-scale infrastructure such as power lines and oil rigs is commonplace, or for real estate, where the properties themselves are the products.
- Lifestyle/artistic photos: Highly stylized business photoshoots that emulate glossy fashion magazine imagery can be an important piece of brand-building. You can use this type of shoot to create editorial content or to show off your products in their respective contexts. Vogue Business points out that several fashion retailers have used lifestyle photoshoots as an effective piece of their overall brand storytelling.
- Bonus: Behind-the-scenes images: This type of photoshoot can be done alongside any other productions. These are behind-the-scenes shoots, which can take place on the sidelines of some other promotional activity. For instance, while filming a marketing video, you may have a professional photo crew on hand taking candid pictures for social media posts or a blog. Having these seemingly casual and unposed photos allows you to extend the lifespan of a marketing campaign and enhances your company’s relatability.
Once you’ve committed to one of these business photoshoot types, it’s time to start the actual planning process. At this stage, your internal team and your professional photographer of choice can collaborate to create an experience that delivers optimal value.
How Do You Plan an Effective Business Photoshoot?
Getting value out of a business photoshoot means understanding your objectives and setting the right conditions so you can achieve those goals. Not every photoshoot will take the same course, because the ideal outcomes and methods can differ so widely.
Getting your executive team together for a corporate headshot session calls for a different procedure than holding a studio session to capture a variety of e-commerce product images. In all cases, your brand and your professional photography team will have to become partners to ensure that the resulting images represent a combination of your company’s identity and the experts’ technical skill.
These are a few considerations that you must prioritize when planning and conducting a successful business photoshoot:
- Aligning the photography approach with branding and intended use: Whether the photo subjects are employees, products, buildings or anything in between, it’s important to make sure the shoot style aligns with your brand’s visual identity. As the Candy Fox Studio photography blog notes, clarity is an important element in a photoshoot. The photographer’s chosen approach to a shoot must reflect both a brand’s general visual identity and the finished shots’ intended use.
- Working out location logistics: Your business photoshoot’s location will play a major role in effective photoshoot planning. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce noted on its blog that there are logistical differences between shoots set in a company’s own building and those at other locations. For the former, it’s essential to clean and clear the space and set it up to make sure the process goes smoothly. For the latter, some planning is necessary to make sure all required personnel can get to the location at the chosen time and that the photographer will be able to set up and capture the needed photos successfully.
- Ensuring your photographer has the right equipment: Gear isn’t everything when it comes to having a successful corporate photoshoot, but it is important. Bigcommerce noted that business photos are best when photographers set up the right equipment. This encompasses:
- Studio lighting, including lightboxes for product photos. Documenting lighting setups is a good photography practice to ensure that if your company has another shoot, it can achieve a consistent look.
- A tripod to stabilize the shot. Bigcommerce explains that shooting shots of static items is best done with a slow shutter speed. Getting good results with this method requires the camera to be absolutely still, which calls for a tripod.
- Post-production software to make certain the shots come out perfectly. Retouching professional images is part of the business photo process. This could mean adjusting the images’ light, contrast or color balance or adding more sophisticated effects.
Carrying out an effective business photoshoot, when done right, goes like clockwork. Expert photographers know how to capture the right shots to meet an objective, whether they’re photographing an oil rig from a drone, snapping a professional headshot on a blank backdrop or anything in between. A strong collaboration with experts can deliver high-quality results for your organization.
Why Find an Expert Business Photography Provider?
Still photography is very similar videography in that it works most effectively when you work with experts who understand their medium. In fact, you can look to the same source to meet both needs: Crews Control can provide experienced photography crews who have the experience and know-how to capture images that will show your business at its best.
Why work with these teams of professionals? In short, pro photographers deliver both versatility and quality. They can handle every type of assignment from corporate event photography to product shots, using their refined skills and advanced equipment. By collaborating with your stakeholders, these dedicated photography teams can capture your corporate identity in images that will become pillars of your brand storytelling.
A good business photo can capture customers for your company, while a bad one can drive curious potential buyers away. If your organization makes a negative first impression online, it may never get a second chance. A professional photographer running a carefully planned business photoshoot can provide content to master that all-important first touch with your target audience.
To find out what professional photography means for businesses today, download our ebook or request a free quote now.