Visual marketing is all the rage, yet many companies we speak with are still struggling with their business photography and graphic design.
From social media platforms like Instagram marketing, Pinterest, and Facebook, to behind-the-scenes pictures for your newsletter, to data visualization, the graphics you use matter. These methods will help you expand your business photography skills without increasing your budget.
- Visual State of Mind
To start, we have to talk about the mindset behind better business photography and graphics, because it’s an important shift to make. The way to implement long-lasting strategies and change is to think visual.
Many businesses feel hampered by the fact that they simply don’t have enough opportunities for photos, especially when they are service-based. Who wants to see a picture of an executive sitting a desk? Even product-based business may find that just taking the same product photos all the time can get old quickly.
The solution in both cases is to think outside the photography box. Look for things that you are already doing, but maybe not capturing. For instance:
- If you regularly contribute to a charity, could you take a picture of the donation each time it happens?
- Whenever a team member (or members) goes to an event, take photos there.
- If your company is hosting an event, luncheon, etc. take pictures during the event (this sounds simple but is surprisingly easy to overlook).
- If you win an award, take a photo at the awards ceremony or of the award itself.
- If you have a meeting with a client or see a happy customer using your product, ask if you can take a picture.
The point is to think with a visual state of mind. Content opportunities are likely all around you, but are you taking advantage?
- Plan Out a Visuals Strategy
It’s easier to see available opportunities if you know what you are looking for. This is where a visuals strategy is helpful. Ask yourself:
- What is the end goal of your business photography and graphics? Instagram marketing, building a corporate culture marketing plan for HR, infographics, creating a more authentic feel for your business, etc. Each of these items will require different visuals.
- How many graphics are you posting per week and where are you posting them?
- What are your business goals and how can your photography/graphics help enhance them?
When you know what you are using the visuals for and where you are using them, you can create a more efficient plan to meet the requirements.
- Examine Your Tools
It used to be that you needed expensive equipment and software for photography and more. And while that can still be useful, it’s not always necessary, depending on the product.
Many of today’s smartphones come equipped with high-quality cameras that allow you to capture photos and video on the fly. You can also download apps and filters to edit on the go, too. Even using built in social media editors through Instagram and Snapchat can help enhance your DIY photography.
Some helpful apps include:
- Boomerang – take short video clips.
- Instagram – edit in the app. You can also use the “Stories” feature to capture video, add on text, and more.
- Snapchat – apply filters to make your photos look good even in low light.
- Pic Stitch – make a photo collage from your phone. Great for before and afters, multiple photos from an event, etc.
- Design Your Own
Let’s say you want to design a graphic or illustration, but you don’t necessarily need a photo. This might include:
- A stylized quote
- And more.
Or perhaps you need to re-size an image for social media.
You could use software, such as Adobe Creative Suite, to do this, but that can cost money and take specialized skills. While this type of software is useful in some cases, there are online tools that let you do the same thing (with some limitations) for free.
Canva is a great example of a tool like this that lets you design specific posts for social media, infographics, quotes, invitations, and more with a robust database of layouts, images, and fonts at your disposal. There are premium options available, too, if you choose to pay.
While these may not look as professional as having a graphic designer create them, they can still look high quality and may fit the bill, depending on what the job is.
- Get Creative with Stock Photography
Stock image sites, such as iStock.com, have a vast library of both photos and illustrations. This can be a cost-effective way to find images that are harder to capture yourself.
These can be great for blog posts, presentations, websites, and more.
Many stock image sites also allow you to modify the images. (Check the fine print to see what the terms are.) If it is allowed, you could modify the image to suit your needs, such as by adding text on top or cropping it.
- Bundle Visuals Together
Sometimes you might need more from your graphics, be it for corporate headshots, a particularly big event your organization is hosting, a whitepaper or data visualization, etc.
In these cases, it might make sense for your business to hire outside help — like a professional photographer or graphic designer. To save on costs and get more for your budget, you might be able to book in the photographer or designer for a longer time frame and get a discount — using the extra time to get more shots or graphics.
You can also find multiple uses for some of these professional shots. For instance, if you have a designer provide data visualizations for a whitepaper, can they also send you the extracted images on their own so you could use them for social media?
Create a great visuals strategy with DigiForce Marketing. We can help you plan out a content calendar or create visuals that stun through our Content Services.
Learn more today by calling 1-888-701-4441 or visiting https://digiforcemarketing.com/solutions/.