Your online presence needs to be visual. Given the plethora of studies and statistics available on the subject, it's clear that information presented in the form of videos, infographics, and photographs grab your audience's attention better, and are more persuasive in the process.
But how do you get to that point? For too many businesses, the answer is deceptively easy: you start buying stock photography. Go into a free or paid archive, find a picture that looks vaguely related to your industry or audience, and you're off and running.
It's a convenient solution, but far from ideal. Before you know it, competitors with the same idea feature an identical image on their website. Worse, your audience starts seeing the picture in situations completely unrelated to your industry. In either of these scenarios, the benefits of visual marketing almost completely disappear.
Contrast that with using your own, original photographs on your websites. Utilize them the right way, and you begin to truly unlock the power of visual content.
The Drawbacks of Stock Photography
Stock photographs are fast and convenient to obtain. But they're also far from original. If you can buy them, so can your competitors--and even completely unrelated brands. Instead of associating an image with your brand, your visitors begin to see your website as just another replaceable piece of online content.
In addition, stock photography is often so obvious, it becomes silly. Websites famously highlight these too-obvious examples, which can reduce your brand credibility and actually take away from your core value proposition. As exciting as your office is, you may not want to highlight it with 10 people simultaneously jumping into the air.
Finally, don't underestimate the potential licensing restrictions of photography that's not original to your company. Ideally, you want the visuals you use to become synonymous with your brand. In addition to your website, they can pop up on social media posts, display ads, and more to increase audience recall. But depending on the photos you buy, you may not be able to use them in such a ubiquitous way.
The Potential Power of Original Photography on Your Website
All of these drawbacks lead us back to using original photography on your website. It takes more time to achieve; instead of simply buying a few images on a stock website, you have to work with a photographer and plan a photo shoot. But if you do, the benefits will become increasingly significant.
Original photography, to start, is completely yours. Once the photos are taken, you can use them in whichever marketing initiatives you plan, for as long as needed. Rather than being limited by licensing restrictions, you can potentially build your entire online presence around these images.
The above point is especially important considering the fact that original photography allows you to truly make your business stand out in the eyes of your audience. These images allow you to create views and angles that highlight your unique value proposition, separating your online presence from your competitors.
In fact, you can even use your photography to guide your marketing message. Human beings process visual information exponentially faster than text, so it makes sense to use your images as graphic ways to communicate exactly what you're trying to promote.
Does your website take advantage of original photography? In an increasingly crowded online environment, it better. Even the most creative text will mean little if the visual look of your online presence differs little from that of your competitors and other sites around the web. With original photography, however, you can help your business stand out and leave a memorable impression in the eyes of your audience.
To learn more about how to improve your marketing strategies and grow your business, give us a call at 661-702-1310 or visit www.SmallDogCreative.com!