As a business owner, you want to create a visual experience that accurately represents your brand and resonates with your target audience. One way to do this is by using actual photography instead of stock images. Here are some reasons why:
Authenticity: Actual photography is authentic and genuine, capturing the true essence of your brand and its products or services. This creates a connection with your audience that is difficult to achieve with generic stock images.
Uniqueness: Actual photography is unique to your business, showcasing your brand in a way that sets it apart from the competition. Stock images, on the other hand, are often overused and lack the personal touch that actual photography provides.
Personalization: Actual photography allows you to personalize your marketing efforts and tailor your images to your specific audience. You can use photos of your team, your customers, and your products to tell a story and create a deeper emotional connection with your audience.
Professionalism: Actual photography shows that you are serious about your business and willing to invest in high-quality visuals that represent your brand in the best possible light. This professionalism is essential in building trust with your audience and establishing your brand as a leader in your industry.
Here are some examples of actual photography versus stock images to illustrate the difference:
Example 1: A restaurant promoting their menu
Actual Photography: A photo of the actual food, taken in the restaurant’s kitchen, with natural lighting and a colorful, inviting presentation.
Stock Image: A generic image of a plate of food that looks staged and lacks the unique qualities of the restaurant’s actual dishes.
Example 2: A fitness studio promoting their services
Actual Photography: A photo of a real client working out in the studio, with natural lighting and an authentic atmosphere.
Stock Image: A generic image of a fitness model, which can feel unattainable and unrealistic for the average person.
Example 3: A travel agency promoting a destination
Actual Photography: A photo of a real traveler experiencing the destination, with natural lighting and a personal touch that captures the essence of the place.
Stock Image: A generic image of a landmark, which can feel impersonal and fail to capture the unique qualities of the destination.
There are actually several statistics that show how users resonate more with actual imagery over stock imagery:
According to a study by the Nielsen Norman Group, users pay more attention to photos of real people than they do to stock photos. Real photos of people also evoke strong emotional responses and are more memorable. (https://www.nngroup.com/articles/stock-photos-vs-real-photos/)
Another study by CXL found that adding real photos of your team, products, or customers can increase conversions by up to 35%. (https://cxl.com/blog/power-of-real-photos/)
Hubspot found that articles with relevant images get 94% more views than articles without images. (https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/visual-content-marketing-strategy)
According to MDG Advertising, 67% of online shoppers rated high-quality images as being “very important” when making purchase decisions. (https://www.mdgadvertising.com/marketing-insights/infographics/the-power-of-visual-content-marketing-infographic/)
These statistics show that using actual photography in your marketing efforts can have a significant impact on how users perceive and engage with your brand. By investing in high-quality visuals that accurately represent your brand and products, you can build trust and establish your business as a leader in your industry.