If you have any sort of internet presence for your brand, then it’s absolutely necessary that you have quality images to support your brand. Images are the forefront, or essentially the welcome mat, of your business—it’s the first thing we see when we discover a new brand.
Images help us remember information. If we hear a piece of information, we’ll only remember 10% of it three days later. However, if there’s a relevant picture to accompany it, we’ll remember 65% of the information three days later. This is why images are imperative to your brand awareness.
But not just any image will do. If you have a fabulous product but only have a mediocre picture to show it, what does that say about your brand? It’s difficult to imagine Gucci or Coach without great photography. That’s because we rely heavily on images to process information and build trust. We also consume information super quickly while browsing online, so it’s essential that your images capture your audience’s attention right away.
It’s a pretty simple order of events: great images build trust. People who trust your brand want to share your product or service. Sharing creates brand awareness. Brand awareness builds your audience and leads to more sales.
Let’s discuss how to get those great images and, ultimately, increase sales.
1. Find image inspiration
How do you want to represent your brand? Minimal and bright, or more lifestyle-esque? Find ways to show your product in a new light that differs from your competition. Think beyond plain product images.
Pinterest is a great place to find inspiration. Create a mood board for yourself on Pinterest and start saving images that stand out to you. Ask yourself why these images are significant to you. Think of ways you can replicate a certain feeling those images give off. Maybe it’s a certain color scheme, or perhaps it’s the way the photo is lit.
Do the photos you save have a lot of white space, or are they more busy? Really analyze those images and bring that inspiration to your next set of photos.
2. Define your client
What’s your audience demographics? Are they female? How old are they? Get to know them! Sometimes it’s challenging to think of an actual audience, so think of the ideal person you’d like to sell your product or service to and build your research around them.
If you have a business account on Instagram, that’s a great place to get some initial insights to your audience. Analyze your audience from there—does it match up to the audience you had in mind? If not, make some changes so you can find the right crowd. This could involve changing your photo style drastically, so make sure you’re aiming for the right audience.
3. Plan ahead
Give ample time to prepare for your photoshoot. A well thought out, curated campaign always takes time. Think about props you’d like to incorporate and specific concepts you’d like to bring to life. Perhaps you’re releasing a new face mask and want to express the natural ingredients within it. A campaign with fresh ingredients and vivid colors would be a great route to begin.
If you’re taking a DIY approach, think of the time of day you need to shoot to get the best natural light. If you’re hiring someone, then have a discussion about your brand’s aesthetics, colors, and any general ideas you have in mind. With professional help, they can help come up with amazing ideas to help propel your business forward.
Think of uses for your images. Do you just need them for social media posts? Or are you looking to update your website imagery? Each use has different specs that you’ll need to optimize for, so keep image sizes in mind.
Develop a plan for your imagery. We like original ideas. We like things that make us laugh, or make us feel happy. How can you get that reaction from your audience? Let’s say you’re launching your first summer fashion line and you’re going for a fun and flirty aesthetic. What would your campaign look like? Perhaps photos that play off the style of clothing would be a fitting campaign. For example, adorn your models in flowers for a floral print. For color blocked pieces, contrast with bold patterns of beach umbrellas or ice pops. A focus on warm, bright, and uplifting color schemes would further express the fun and flirty aesthetic.
Think beyond simple photos. Plan a strategy that tells a story with your images.
4. Promote those gorgeous images!
These don’t necessarily need to be paid promotions, but share them ALL over social media! Create a inspiring or humorous story to go with them. Engage your viewers, ask them questions, and get to know them. Humanizing your brand this way reinforces and continues to build that trust your image initially laid out.
If you want growth quickly, then paid promotions are the route to go. Start somewhere simple, like Pinterest or Facebook, or wherever your audience hangs out most. Run a couple small test campaigns and see what images your audience gravitates towards.
Through both organic and paid promotions, you can see what images your audience favors. You can now take this information to further improve future campaigns, social media images, and even your website imagery. This in turn will expand your brand awareness, and ultimately increase sales.
Creativity sells. No longer are the days where we can just take a photo of a product, slap some ugly text on it, and hope it sells. Without great images to bring your audience in, it’s hard to capture their attention in our information inundated world. Create a plan, tell a story, and inspire your audience with captivating imagery.