The Power of Promos Prevail

I was excited to see than my good buddy and client Dane Sanders got this month’s “Best of Photography Websites” by RangeFinder Magazine. The video we produced for him was called out in the article as a contributing factor. I think this is a great testament to the power of video to extend your  brand. But I particularly like how the article author Steve Tout made this observation:

The footage allows me, as a consumer, to feel that I can relate to him as a person. Viewing his portfolio further reinforces this connection. I am engaged with his work and his vision without even seeing his price list…

This is something I’m always preaching when I give advice on producing promo videos for photographers (whether I’m advising photographers themselves, or fellow videographers looking to produce such promos). It’s so important to create a video that emotionally connects the subject to the viewer. This is true for any promo. Don’t just show a lot of cool photos and slick shots. Show the person behind the brand. Especially in a relationship driven business like wedding photography, that connection is key.

Congratulations Dane. I am proud to be a part of your winning team. 🙂

To read the whole article, click here (pdf).



If you’re in the process of producing a promo, whether you’re the producer or the client, here are my tips for success:

  • Tell a compelling story.
  • Let us hear the subject (both in an interview, and in action doing their job, if applicable)
  • Quality production values, of course (clear audio, clean shots, good exposure, etc.)
  • Great music (we often use Triple Scoop Music, but there many other resources). I’ll sometimes spend hours just picking the right song for a 3 minute video.
  • If possible, incorporate client testimony.
  • Short and sweet (2.5 to 4 minutes). I think Dane’s is a little on the longer side, but his story is so compelling, I  think it carries the viewer through the end.
  • Keep the client’s target audience in mind. Make sure it’s a video that will truly speak to whomever is the subject’s ideal client.
  • Be authentic. Don’t make a cool, hip MTV-style promo if your brand is more classic and traditional.
  • Lastly, if it’s for a photographer, don’t focus on the images. Use just a handful. That may sound counter-intuitive, but it’s really the best way to go. Leave the website as the source to view the images. The video is about the artist, not his/her art.

I’m excited to see more and more photographers using video in this way. I’m even more excited to see my fellow videographer colleagues getting paid to produce such videos. It’s worth the investment folks. If you’re a photographer, don’t be too cheap to invest it. And if you’re a videographer, don’t be afraid to charge it. In the end, if done right, you both win out.

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