Stop Waggling Your Wares And Get A Better Quality Catalogue Photo
For any small business creating a single catalogue photo can seem deceptively easy; creating a hundred becomes a challenge, and several thousand a sheer impossibility. The trouble is that many professional photography studios offering pack photography or catalogue photo production charge such fearfully high prices that small and sometimes even medium sized businesses can be priced out of the equation. This leaves the big boys - large corporations and big established businesses with a real advantage because in the overwhelming majority of cases it's the image that sells the product much more than the price or the text.
Images are vital tools in the retail business, and whether you're selling a physical product, a virtual one or a service, getting the right kind of photo or image is critical. But for small businesses trying to create a successful opportunity, what are the options? How do you go about creating one catalogue photo, or one thousand photos, economically and quickly? For many businesses there are just two options, although in truth there is a third alternative which I will come on to in a moment.
The first option for many people, especially in the early stages, is to make use of the pack photography services provided by some manufacturers and distributors. These are basic product photographs supplied with the item, and which can be use by any retailer selling that particular product. The trouble is that these images are often very poor quality, and do little more than give a very rough and ready idea of what the product looks like. In many cases this includes only a photograph of the product still in its packaging, and really makes no attempt at all to actually sell the product.
There is a huge difference between showing someone what a product looks like, and selling the product. If you were a door to door vacuum salesman (remember those?) then you wouldn't really achieve much by simply waving the vacuum cleaner in front of people's faces and then asking for their money. They would need to see a demonstration, and it is this which is likely to help clinch the sale. But of course if you're selling over a distance a demonstration is often not possible, and so all you have to rely on is a photograph.
This is why it is so important not just to have a photograph which does the equivalent of waggling the product in front of people's faces whilst staring blankly at them in the hope they'll hurl their wallet at you. A catalogue photo needs to sell the product, and this can be achieved in a variety of ways, none of which will be accomplished by using a manufacturer supplied product.
The other thing to bear in mind is that if you resort to using these pack photography images, then you're not able to stand out from the many other retailers using the exact same images. Being different matters.
The second alternative open to small businesses is to use an in house photography team to create the images. However, these catalogue images might be a little better than the manufacturer supplied pictures, but only just. In most cases they will still only demonstrate to customers what the product looks like. In other words, you're still just waggling your wares in front of people - you're not actually selling them. So what's the third option I mentioned?
Simply put, it's look harder. Because whilst it's true that there are many professional photography studios willing to take vast sums of money from you for a professional catalogue photo shoot, this doesn't mean to say that there aren't studios focussing especially on small and medium business, offering a professional service without the high price tag. Unless all you want to do is waggle your wares, a professional photo studio offering affordable prices could be the best way to start standing out, and selling.