Wednesday, April 7, 2010

A Picture Can Say a Thousand Words...or Nothing At All

One of my current projects involves revamping the website of a well-known event producer; ideally, we want his revamped site to illustrate his creative vision, the tremendous scope of his projects, and his high-end clientele. To do this, of course, I'll have to generate great content to describe the events. But most of all, the site designer will need fantastic photos to showcase the events themselves. This is where we've run into a problem. And, it's a problem that I encounter with clients on a regular basis: the case of the missing photos.

For an event producer, lacking an arsenal of professional photos that showcase hundreds of events is a HUGE problem. Even the most prolific, descriptive, professional copywriter can't show someone an event. A writer can describe the magnificent lighting, the custom-made ice bar shaped like a dragon, the models wearing unitards that were designed to showcase the Tiffany jewelry; but, without photos, the images are simply those created in the potential client's mind. And, if the potential client is someone without much of an imagination, or a person who cannot visualize well, then he or she might envision some strange stuff that doesn't sound fabulous at all.

The issue of the missing photos is not limited to event producers, florists, artists, or those whose work requires visual proof of his or her abilities. If you sell a product, you need to have a great photo of that product on your site; in fact, the more photos and the more angles of the product, the better. The more you show the potential customer, the more likely it is that he or she will choose what you have to offer.

Some real estate agents, for example, know that lesson well. If you've ever searched for a home online, you'll notice that some listings have one photo, while others have dozens of photos (and often videos) showcasing the property. Which property would you be more inclined to view in person? My guess is that you'd be wary of the property with the solitary photo and be more inclined to visit the one with which you have become familiar. Again, a description of a beautiful master bathroom or gourmet kitchen is essential to adequately describe a magnificent home; but, without a photo, the description is lost on the potential buyer who may not be able to visualize granite countertops, dual vanities or a jetted tub.

Finally, if your product or service centers around you, then show your customers who you are. This can be achieved either by having photos of yourself (which I believe are key to breeding familiarity and comfort between you and your potential clients) on your site or of images that describe you or your personality.

People gravitate toward the familiar and like to see what they're getting before they purchase a product. Words are important, but the power of a good image shouldn't be overlooked. So, before you develop your site or marketing materials, make sure that your pictures say a thousand words. The copywriter will take care of the rest.

1 comment:

  1. Anna, great article. I couldn't agree more. We started posting pictures of our events on our Facebook Fan Page several months ago and now, people are emailing me the next morning if the pictures aren't up. This is good information for anyone looking to use the internet to develop relationships with both clients and prospects.