Stock photography is like the crocs of footwear. It can be a quick and inexpensive way of creating visual content with little effort. But, more often than not, it looks like it has taken little effort and lacks originality.
Behind-the-scenes at a shoot I did for Velaspan
It’s important to be able to own both the visual and verbal corporate identity of your business and to continuously put out strong content in both areas. Rather than using ordinary stock photos, consider creating your own portfolio of custom stock photography. This allows you to interlace your brand and culture into the style and environment of the photograph.
Here are a couple of our favorite all-to-common terrible stock photos types:
You should own your branding. This means having original content and an arsenal of unique photographs. Determine what purpose you need these photographs to fulfill and some of the uses you may have for them before setting out to find a photographer or agency to create your portfolio. You should also have an idea of what aspects of your brand or environment you want to portray.
“A little over a year ago we made a conscious decision, as a 10+ year old student housing company, to up our marketing game with brand photography and logo creation. The days of stock internet images and self- shot photography were no longer getting it done for us in the eyes and minds of our residents. To most college students image is everything and an accurate representation of our product offering was the most important part of our business that we needed to enhance. Now, every piece of our marketing collateral, trade show backdrops, videos, and website feature studio quality photography that get our future residents excited to want to live in one of our facilities.”
Tim Sipe, Chief Operating Officer at College Town Communities
When we set out to do this at Weidenhammer Creative, we developed a strategy. We determined there was a need and knew that we wanted images demonstrating different devices, as responsiveness is a feature that many of our clients focus on. We knew we wanted our strong culture to permeate the environment of each photograph. Creating our own collection of stock photographs would also allow us to save the time we spend daily, sifting through Shutterstock, making us a more efficient team. As an added bonus, it would strengthen our original content. This is an achievement we are always striving for.
As the Manager of Photo and Video services, I knew this would be the best way for us to take our content to the next level. It would require a little bit of development and production time, but it would pay off quickly. With such a large pool of stock photography out there, we have seen an increase in quantity but the quality has dropped exponentially. We don’t want to be anything less than exceptional.
In our stock photography, we featured multiple devices to play on our strength in device strategy and responsive development. We also incorporated our office style by including artwork and branded products, as well as our own team members. The end results are spectacular and will take us one step further in our editorial efforts and branding.
The key to developing the strongest corporate identity is to have unique content. It you are interested in working with Weidenhammer Creative to create your own collection of stock photography, or to have high quality unique photographs taken of your team or environment, contact Manager of Client Relations, Jeremy Jones at [email protected] or (610) 317- 4010.