How to Use Photographs in Your Marketing

A photograph is only worth a thousand words if you pick the right one for your marketing message. Here are examples from three photo shoots I have done for clients that we now use in their marketing campaigns.

Show your product in action.

How to Use Photographs in Your Marketing

Use a photo to tell the story of your brand and how it benefits your customers. TriState Water Works provides Prompt and Proven Sprinkler Service so that customers can enjoy lush lawns and beautiful gardens throughout the summer.

Rivet your audience.

How to Use Photographs in Your Marketing

Unique, dramatic or beautiful imagery will draw customers’ attention and interest them in your brand. Paramount Lawn + Landscape offers customers the beauty and drama of architectural landscape lighting, with the added benefit of security. For this product in particular, the photograph does more to encourage the sale than any marketing copy ever could.

Get personal.

How to Use Photographs in Your Marketing

Featuring people or animals is especially effective for small businesses that primarily provide services. This photograph for Grady Veterinary Hospital conveys happy, healthy pets and compassionate, understanding care.

Here’s something to avoid: clichés. Stock photography clichés like a woman wearing a telephone headset or a family holding hands and smiling cloyingly at the camera are completely useless for communicating marketing messages. Customers are so accustomed to seeing these images that they have become meaningless. I won’t even include an example stock photo image, because it might cause you to skip reading this paragraph entirely.

Finally, high-quality, professional photos are much more effective than ones taken by an amateur with a smartphone. Professional photographers know how to tell a story with their camera and capture your brand’s benefits to best effect. Choose a photographer who understands your business goals and brand personality.

When Competitors Copy You

If your small business is at the leading edge of your industry, chances are competitors regularly copy everything you do. From innovative products to customer service standards to something as simple as the headline of an advertisement. Here’s one blatant example I found while flipping through Cincinnati Magazine of a competitor copying my client, Paramount Lawn + Landscape.

When a Competitor Copies You

How do you feel when you find instances like this? Maybe you feel frustrated, indignant or cheated. That makes sense. But what you should really be feeling is excited and validated.

If a competitor copied you, that means you’re doing something right. Something that works. You understand the market in a way the “other guy” doesn’t. That other guy can’t think of anything better, so he will always be one step behind you.

But you can’t rest on your laurels.

When competitors copy you, it becomes harder for customers to tell you apart. Perhaps customers can’t tell who will “Light Up Your Night!” best. It’s time to implement an even better marketing strategy and leave your competition, once again, in your dust. Until they copy you again, that is…