Home Business Business Sense: Professional photos for a business advantage – Eureka Times-Standard

Business Sense: Professional photos for a business advantage – Eureka Times-Standard

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For many businesses in Humboldt County an online presence has played a minor role compared to in-store sales. All that has changed since the COVID-19 pandemic. Now online sales have become a major, if not the major, source of income. One of the most important elements that will help ensure the online and offline success of a business are high-quality, professional photos of products and services.

Why are professional photos important?

  1. Presenting products and services with high-quality photos will give clients and customers the impression that the business is professional and trustworthy.
  2. Professional photos showcase products and services in the best possible light which will increase sales significantly.
  3. High-quality photos encourage sharing on social media thereby increasing companies’ reach to other markets at no cost.
  4. Photos can help businesses get found on the web. Search engine optimization (SEO) is the practice of strategically optimizing various elements, information, tags, and text on a website in an effort to help it perform well in search engine ranking results. There are many elements to SEO and photos are an important one.
  5. Brands convey who and what businesses are while offering customers products and services that are easily recognized as desirable. Professional photos empower businesses to do this without saying a word.
  6. Professional, high-quality photos also support a company’s brand with a consistent look and feel. This consistency will make it easier for clients and customers to identify a brand among its competitors.

Stock photography is affordable today, but professional photos are unique to a company’s brand. Photos of the working environment, employees, events, and products and services will build a stronger relationship with your customers.

Professional photos that yield consistent size, backgrounds, lighting and focus offer good return on investment (ROI). They can be used offline (brochures, postcards, newspaper ads, signage, etc.) as well as online (websites, banner ads, online stores, social media posts, etc.) over and over. The repetition not only saves the company money but also reinforces the brand.

ROI is a percentage that identifies the revenue made in comparison to the time and money spent to create a company’s advertising. Here’s the equation:

ROI = gain from investment minus the cost of investment divided by the cost of the investment.

An example:

$2,000 in sales minus $300 for ad + $200 for photos divided by $300 for ad + $200 for photos = ROI of 300% meaning for every $1 spent there were $3 in earnings.

Tracking ROI provides valuable information for an in-depth, data-backed picture of where and how marketing dollars are being spent. This data shows a business what’s working and what isn’t. Measuring the performance of professional photos provides better insights on how to deliver their value.

The old adage that “I know that I’m wasting half of my advertising budget, but I don’t know which half,” is somewhat less relevant today. Tools for tracking engagement on social media sites and using Google Analytics for website performance evaluation have become more user friendly and sophisticated, providing valuable data to businesses in their efforts to spend their online marketing dollars efficiently.

High quality photos have been shown to increase customer engagement dramatically. Photos are effective because they’re memorable. They help people process, understand, and retain information quickly. Professional photos are one of the best marketing investments a business can make.

Joel Mielke and Lynn Harvey are owners of Carson Park Design in Eureka, a creative agency specializing in all aspects of brand development and communication.

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