A Picture’s Worth

……. You know the rest.

Working with clients on PR, social media and web content, I find I talk quite a bit about photos and video. It usually goes something like this:

Client: “We’re going out to the construction site next week.”

Me: “Great! Take a photo of the progress.”

(time passes)

Me: “How was the site visit? Did you get any good photos we can use on the website?”

Client: “Oh, forgot… next time.”

After three or four of these conversations, the client is “trained” to take some photos or video of the news that happens. Photos and video are great additions to PR efforts and social media marketing. Some websites and publications do not consider news items without a photo.

So a few tips for use of photos with PR and social media marketing:

  • Professional photos when it counts the most. If it is a grand opening of your new corporate headquarters, or a product shot for a new brochure: hire a photographer. Otherwise…
  • Phone photos are fine. Most smartphones have a lens that would have beephotobombingn the envy of a professional digital photographer a decade ago.
  • Shoot a bunch… it’s digital, let your creative or marketing folks have some options.
  • Mind the lighting. Although phone photos are fine, their flash capability will not overcome the sun behind the subject. Worst case, your subjects look like they are (as my sister dubbed it) “in the witness protection program”.
  • Don’t photobomb yourself. It’s easy to be so focused on the subject (and now these tips) that you don’t realize the full composition of the photo. Be sure to let passersby, pass by. Try to frame the subject without distraction of something off the side or in the background.
  • What’s that line? Note if there are corners of walls behind the subject or edges of furniture or art frames. Nothing looks more odd than a line running out of a person’s head.
  • Go landscape. Most photo crops in media are square or landscape (wider than they are deep). Portrait is for a person.
  • Go professional. If it is a person (a new hire, an award winner, etc.), spend the fifty bucks and get a professional head and shoulders or “resume” shot. These shots rarely look good when done with a phone because the wall behind shows shadows. Go professional.

So bottomline on photos: take photos and use them online and in PR. They do help get stories placed.

Video is also powerful for search engine optimization (SEO) and for keeping website visitors

Sidebar: I often get questions about “What is news?”. I write about that in this article. Take a look… PR, especially using online distribution, is a great way to grow awareness of your business or brand and to drive web traffic….otherwise known as organic search engine optimization (SEO).

If you have any questions about photos or PR/news release distribution, contact us.

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