December 12, 2019

The Digital Age & Product Photography

By Joel Loeffler

As a graphic designer and photographer, I have learned many things about the digital marketing space. The most important being, how to highlight a brand or product’s most essential attributes. When it comes to e-commerce, it is important to understand the disconnect between seller and consumer that has not existed before the rapid expanse of online businesses. This disconnect stems from humanities basic need to use our senses to decipher an experience, especially the senses of touch and sight. With the rise of online sales, consumers are unable to use these basic senses to decide whether to buy or move along. I’m here to tell you that not all is lost, there is still hope!

“One picture is worth a thousand words.” This statement has never been truer than in the digital age of consumerism. A picture allows the consumer to have—what would now be considered—a natural interaction of the senses. Texture, quality and style can all be seen in proper product photography. In fact, photography is a more powerful tool than the consumer (and often the seller) realizes. Here are two important tips for using photography in the most effective way.

Tip #1: Use a professional!

You might say, “Everyone has a camera and considers themselves a photographer nowadays. In fact, I’ll take my own product shots”. This would be the WRONG decision, which surprisingly happens all too often. Like any profession, there is an invested time commitment leading to a complete understanding of the subject. For instance, owning a hammer does not make a person a professional construction worker. Likewise, owning a camera does not make someone a photographer. It gives them the ability to take a picture, just as a hammer gives the ability to drive a nail. However, all the most important base knowledge and understanding of the profession is missing.

Tip #2: Don’t be skimpy on the price!

I cannot emphasize this enough. Too often, companies settle for the cheapest option, and the final image resembles such. Let’s not forget we are talking about creating a lasting connection between your target audience and your brand. When a product image is produced correctly, the product is displayed in its most desirable state. Perfect lighting, perfect angle, perfect EVERYTHING! Not only is knowledge and experience important with professional photography, but so is the equipment used. The average professional has anywhere from $8,000-$12,000 worth of camera equipment. And where do they get the money to invest in equipment? You guessed it, the shoots they do. This is one of the reasons product photography isn’t cheap. Photographers also have access to, and a deep understanding of, editing programs like Photoshop and Lightroom, which furthers the perfection of an image. Not to mention, their vast knowledge on manipulation of lighting, a feat that can only be appreciated when looking upon the final image.

So, your iPhone ‘photography’ doesn’t seem all that desirable now, does it? Well good! My hope is that by reading this blog you now understand the importance of photography in the digital age. It simply cannot be overlooked or ignored as it has a defining impact on a brand’s success or inevitable failure. After all, if a picture says a thousand words about your brand, they better be a thousand positive words.

If you’re in need of professional product photography, send us an email at