What Is Advertising Photography and How It Is Different

The term advertising photography might not mean much to you. But for business owners, marketing and advertising professionals and photographers, it is essential to know what exactly sets this kind of photography apart. After all, advertising photography is one of the most important tools you can use to market your products and services.

Let’s examine the characteristics of this type of photography, how it is different, why you should care and how to make advertising photography work for you!

What is advertising photography

Advertising photography conveys the mood or feelings that a product or service elicits. As an advertising tool, this kind of photography aims to sell something to viewers, or at least to create buying intent. The subject of advertising photography is not the product itself, but the responses and benefits customers can obtain from it.

Advertising photography is known for being bold, sometimes even combining different medium. Creative freedom is an important aspect of the craft. There are many different ways to elicit emotional responses in the audience through photography: the challenge of the advertising photographer is to figure out how to do that within specific marketing campaigns.

How is it different from commercial photography

Advertising photography is not only about capturing the product itself, as product photography does. It is a more nuanced approach to photography, aiming to create desire within viewers. It makes goods and services more appealing, by evoking the sensations, feelings and emotions related to purchasing something.

Most commercial photography focus on depicting a product or service, avoiding distractions. This leads to more neutral composition, colours and lighting. These kinds of photos are an important part of any promotion strategy and in e-commerce. 

Normally, both commercial product photography and advertising photography are necessary in a marketing campaign. They play different roles: one (commercial photography) captures the essence of the product, what it is. The other (advertising) captures what the product can do for the end user, how it can make the audience feel.

Another particularity of advertising photography is that it welcomes digital enhancements and editions. The images can be bold, as they don’t have to capture reality per se. Rather, it can employ effects to achieve a magical, ethereal image, or a stark and angular visual. It all boils down to the feeling it has to convey – and a talented professional photographer than can create the right compositions and add the right amount of post-editing. 

Why invest in advertising photography

Advertising photography can help your marketing efforts stand out from the mass. A bold, high-quality visual can create a lasting impression in your audience. By evoking emotional responses, it can stand apart from the 6,000 ads a person is exposed to on a daily basis. After all, information that includes images improve recall to 65% three days after being exposed to it.

An experienced professional advertising photographer knows how to leverage lighting, angles, backgrounds and colours to create striking images. But more than that, they know how to work with your brand and marketing teams to create visuals that convey a specific idea and specific emotions. 

Photography stands out due to its power to connect to people through storytelling on a personal level. The audience responds to a photograph by filling the gaps with their own past experiences, beliefs and values. In other words, in just a few seconds, our mind is able to interpret and connect with photographic images. 

That’s why advertising photography is so powerful – and why it is essential to work with professional photographers that understand its particularities. All elements involved in creating amazing photos have to be taken into consideration. But it’s also essential to consider how the audience will react within seconds of seeing the image. What emotions it will awaken? What associations it can facilitate?

Make advertising photography work for your business

While working with experienced professionals is essential, it’s important to know what works best when it comes to advertising photography. This way, you’ll be able to discuss concepts with the photographer, and clearly explain what you want to achieve. 

Here are a few things to keep in mind.

Less is more

Creativity is a huge part of advertising photography. But trying too many things at the same time can be detrimental. 

It’s preferable to go light on the post-editing, so the impact of the image doesn’t get diluted. Plus, when the image doesn’t tell the whole story, it invites our audience to fill the gap. This helps create an even stronger connection between individual and brand!

Overall ad composition

“Less is more” also goes for the overall composition of any ad piece. Be mindful of the way copy and images interact. Once again, leaving space for the audience’s mind to feel the gaps is a good idea. 

Even if you have amazing photographs at your disposal, if the overall design is too crowded or messy, the image won’t be able to have its full impacts. A way to avoid that is inviting the advertising photographer be a part of the process, so his creative ideas can integrate in the end product.

Consistent message

Advertising photography is one element of an overarching marketing campaign. Hence, it should be consistent with the tone of the entire campaign, and with the message it conveys. Once again, by including a professional photographer in the process, you can ensure that photography, editing and marketing efforts are coordinated and cohesive. 

As you can see, advertising photography has many particularities that sets it apart from commercial or product photography. It has the ultimate goal of evoking emotional responses on a personal level. When used correctly, it can help you create effective campaigns that become top-of-mind. 

By working with professional advertising photographers, you can guarantee iconic visuals that are fine-tuned to your unique needs. Klaud9 helps you find the perfect photographer, wherever you need, within 24 hours. Our global photographer network can help you translate your ideas into successful campaigns. Check out our on-demand photo shoot packages and drop us a line for custom options!

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