A picture is worth a thousand words

5044775699_1490d07951 Strong brands have always relied upon compelling images to   tell their story so how can you set about making sure you have the best possible photos to support your marketing activities? If you are going to make your mark online, a good photo will often be the deciding factor on whether or not your story will be published or binned. Here are our top tips on planning effective press photography for an event. It is all down to the brief and the preparation. Review the brief It might sound obvious, but work out in concise detail what you want the photographer to capture for you.  On the night you will be too busy to be with the photographer every moment and they really need to know what is expected from them. Consider:
  • the venue all dressed for the occasion but prior to people arriving
  • the reception drinks party – the bar, the drinks, the people etc
  • corporate branding and sponsorship details – they all need recognising
  • key people that must be included
  • the stage set
  • table settings
  • elements of the catering – from canapés to puddings
  • key speakers, prize winners, entertainment
  • dancing afterwards
Refine your brief as tightly as possible and talk to your key sponsors and make sure their needs will be met as well. Finally don’t forget to brief everybody at the venue.  Chef needs to know if a photographer is coming into the kitchen.  Likewise the MC at a prize giving needs to allow time for key shots to be taken. Capture captions One of the most tedious tasks during event shooting is collecting names and titles of any special guests featured in your pictures. When you are confronted with a room of 150 plus strangers with an excited photographer clicking away, the last thing you need to worry about is finding out who is being photographed! We have worked with many clever photographers who have their own techniques for capturing names as they shoot.  Some collect business cards in the order of shooting (impressive!) others have sophisticated equipment that record names verbally on to the camera. Decide who will be responsible for identifying people, often your client/event organiser will support you but if you need pictures instantly you will need to act fast. If you need important shots for press there and then, take a small notepad and pen and find out yourself!  Upload and share How soon do you need the pictures? Don’t forget to discuss this with your photographer; if you need them instantly, prepare access to wifi so that you can upload pictures directly from your location. If you are offering to send a selection of pictures exclusively to a publication you must agree with your photographer and with your colleagues/clients internally not to send or share photos from the event with anyone else until your story is published. Many photographers like to talk about shoots in blogs and over facebook so if content is exclusive or embargoed make this clear to them upfront. Rule of thumb – avoid sending high resolution pictures over email, flickr, dropbox and YouSendit are all free to use and provide a platform for sharing pictures online not to mention makes life easier for everyone. Maximise the benefit So post the event you now have lots of lovely photos and there are lots of other things you can do apart from press relations to make the most of the opportunity:
  • create an e-news blast to celebrate the occasion with lots of people shots
  • send key people their photo by email with a quick thank you note
  • include the shots in presentations, pitches and future invitations.
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