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Archive for May, 2011

Let’s face it, photography makes or breaks your success in the online business world. Having appealing, well lit, and professional looking photographs entice buyers to click that “buy it now button” more than any other aspect about your business. Images are the ticket.

Your business may have gotten to the point where you’re considering hiring a professional to do your photography. Perhaps you carry stock items that don’t vary much or at all. Or you’re putting together a brochure or catalog, or you’re launching an ad campaign. If you need a showstopping photograph that can be used over and over again, hiring a product photographer could be an excellent investment.

Most product photographers charge a daily rate which can vary in price based on the type of photos you require. Outdoor pictures, pictures of jewelry, and pictures requiring models tend to be pricier. You can typically expect to pay anywhere from $500 to $1000 a day. If you don’t have many items to be photographed, you can also opt to pay per image, with the cost being roughly $15-$20 depending on your needs. If you want to use a model in your photos, add the model’s fee, the cost of a stylist to do makeup and hair (about $50 per day), plus potentially the cost of a handler and perhaps even a tutor for a child model, depending on your state’s requirements.

So now comes the difficult part, finding the right product photographer. Product photography is an art and not just any photographer will do. Product photographers must be meticulous and calculate how to make the perfect photo for your audience rather than capture a fleeting moment like most photographers do. Carefully go through the portfolios of potential candidates. Do they have photos of static items or just landscapes, events, and portraits? If they do have static items, are the photographs enticing, attractive–would it make you want to own that particular item? If you answered yes, then strike up a conversation with them.

Talk to the photographer to see if they are open to your ideas and willing and able to create photos that evoke the right feel for your business and customer base. This is incredibly important for branding purposes. If they are out of your price range, are they willing to barter services for the difference, or willing to come up with a smaller package that you can afford? (Please keep in mind that you do get what you pay for.)

Finally, do you feel comfortable with your photographer? Establishing a foundation of trust, honesty, and openness is vital. You need to be able to clearly express what you would like, but trust the photographer enough to use their own judgment on creating the perfect image. After all, you are paying them for their expertise.

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