Using visuals and imagery are essential parts of any campaign. When you take a look at our lives and consider our love of infographics, Pinterest and Instagram, as well as our preference for fast, digestible information, using pictures well in your marketing mix makes good sense.

Most marketers turn to stock photography when they want to illustrate their idea or campaign. That’s because it can be cost-effective and fast. But there are risks with stock photos, and smart marketers should know them.

The reason we use stock photos most often here at New Word Order is to create mock-ups and ideas for our clients, giving them a better representation of our idea and what we have in mind. Stock photography can also be faster and cheaper than a photo shoot, and it’s instantly available. So, for brochures and smaller pieces, stock photography can be the way to go.

But there are also many, many reasons why investing in a proper photo shoot is better for your business and brand. For starters, stock photography is pretty generic, impersonal and unrealistic. Probably not the look you were after for your new campaign or your brand.

Stock photos are never taken with a specific idea in mind, and that means they can be bought by anyone and have no particular alignment with any brand. If you use stock photos, you risk looking like any other business – unoriginal, and quite possibly uninspired. If you want to look unique, only images unique to you can achieve this… not the clichés and overused images of your competitors, nor the unrelated stock images you might try to shoehorn into your idea.

At NWO, we love a photo shoot. It’s not just that we’re all about an original idea, either. We believe that when you work with a photographer, you get far more than an image file. You get the benefit of experience, creativity, knowledge and insight.

You also get to say something unique, present something instantly recognisable to the market, and really stand out. You get a professional who listens to and understands your brief, knows what you’re trying to say and what you want to achieve. If you want to make changes on the day, you can, and the final decision on the final image is also in your hands. Complete control.

So while stock photos may be cheap and fast, they can also make your brand look unfocused and unoriginal. A photo shoot is the only solution for a company that wants to visually stand apart from the competition.

With the help of our trusted photography partners, we’ve directed photos shoots for many of our clients – some of them on tight budgets – from Mosaic Chartered Accountants through to Embertec’s very own Power Saviour. For every client, it’s been well worth the investment to truly stand out.

Talk to us today about how you can use photography to bring life to your next campaign.