So, you’ve hired the cuddly rabbit, got the kiddies and balloons, brought in your PR professional for the copy, and now you are sorting out the photography.
Don’t worry, Bill in accounts has a camera! Job done!
So the next day, why hasn’t anyone used the picture?
We’ll, let’s be honest, it’s because the photography is rubbish.
They were not sent to the right people, at the right time, and in the right format, and the picture desk has 30,000 images just like it to choose from.
So, all that money spent on mascots, balloons, press releases and cake was wasted because you scrimped on the photography.
In a competitive market, every aspect of what you do has to shine. And there is no market more competitive right now than the newspapers.
They see thousands of images daily that never see the light of day.
And I despair.
All that money and effort going to waste, when it could have been used productively.
So here are our top PR Photography Tips to get a good result from your PR photography;
1) Provide good pictures. The market is competitive and unless the images are technically spot on, are relevent, have impact and are provided in the right formats, then you are wasting your time.
2) Provide interesting pictures. We have seen plenty of thumbs up, posed group shots, cake cuttings…. You need something creative and original. You have worked hard at being creative why should you not do so with the photography? The photography can’t be an afterthought or a cliche.
3) Provide the picture to the right person at the right time in the right format, with the right information. Timing is everything, getting the image seen is crucial. Having the right caption details in the right locations is essential and getting the format right has to be done. Miss any of this and it’s a fail.
So thinking about the photography, and linking that with the timing, method and target of the release is crucial and should be done as part of the core strategy of your campaign. Bringing in and consulting with a good photographer right from the start is crucial and can add real value.
In addition to doing all of that, a good photographer will ensure that the images properly reflect the qualities of your brand, will bring your values directly into the image, and will provide you with ideas and creativity based upon his knowledge of what will and will not get published. He will bring his creativity to your table and add real value. He will bring his contacts on the picture desks to the table and add another channel by which your story can get published.
Good photography produced for PR use should also sit comfortably amongst the rest of your corporate photography. There is no reason why this photography needs to be unique to the one story. By all means you might wish to directly target a publication with a particular image or style, but in the time of a reasonable shoot the photographer should be able to produce a variety of styles or images. PR photography should not be thought of as the lessor cousin of your proper commercial material, the same rights and qualities should be sought.
A good PR agency will realise the value of good photography, and should be able to bring in a good experienced photographer.
But check, is the photographer regularly published ?
Look at his portfolio, is he actually a good photographer with the relevent experience, or are they just the agency junior with a camera?
Remember the photograph will probably be more prominent than the copy in whatever publication it gets picked up in. If it is poor, fewer folks are likely to read your story.
Often times a strong picture will attract a use that only includes a small amount of copy. If the picture is poor, then you miss this opportunity.
Sometimes a PR agency will encourage you to spend less on photography to make themselves more price competitive. This is a mistake. Nowadays visual content is crucial to all aspects of media and getting the right provider is more important than the cheapest. Not all photographers are created equal!
Good photography adds real value and will dramatically improve your chances of being published.
And getting published is the result we want!