Using Commercial Lifestyle Photography to Create a BIGGER Impact

Product photos alone aren’t always enough to create a BIG impact with buyers. Most companies have a set of images on a white background and they are great for catalogues and websites.

However, in many cases, companies can benefit from professional lifestyle images (images that are more than something on a white background). Commercial lifestyle images tell a story, create a connection and inspire your buyers as to what life can look like using your product or service.

Read on to find out how we helped CIVIQ make a bigger impact with their marketing…

About the Client:
CIVIQ is a growing Silverwater based company that specialises in the design, manufacture, installation and maintenance of products for public spaces. Their products include drinking stations, signage, bicycle racks and outdoor showers.  

The Sydney based company reached out to Sydney commercial photographers as they needed to increase the output of their marketing but had a limited supply showing their latest products.

When they called us we found they had many product photos (photos on a white background) but were missing high quality lifestyle images showing people interacting and using their products in public spaces.

They told us that it was these lifestyle images that had the biggest impact on their potential buyers. In short they needed a commercial photographer in Sydney to carry out a lifestyle photography shoot for them.


The Shoot
Step 1: The Brief
The brief sounded simple. Create a library of lifestyle photography of their products in use. The images needed to include people enjoying their products and be flexible so they could be used for a variety of marketing collateral including EDMs, website, catalogues, brochures, direct mail, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and other social media.

Step 2: Shooting & Challenges:
Lifestyle photography has many challenges. Here’s some of them:

  • No Budget for Professional Models – the client knew they needed models in their photos but didn’t have a large enough budget to employ professional models. Professional models start at $600 each for a half day.

    By approaching ordinary people off the street to be in the photos, the client was able to save a lot of money and cut out the need to spend time booking and organising 20+ models.

    When working with non-professional models, it’s important that the models are directed on how to stand and their expression – otherwise you’ll end up with an awkward looking photo. 

    Please also remember when using people in your photos for marketing purposes, you must get a model release which gives permission to use their image.

  • Variety of Looks for Models – since CIVIQ intended to use these images across multiple campaigns, the photos needed to have different people in them to avoid all the photos looking the same. That ruled out using staff or just one or two models.

    Again, by using ordinary people off the street, a greater variety of looks was achieved meaning CIVIQ wasn’t stuck with dozens of pictures in their image library all using the same model.

  • Time Poor Client –  organising models, locations and shoot schedules is time consuming work. It’s something CIVIQ couldn’t afford to waste time on. We were able to save the client many hours of work by organising which locations to shoot when, the models and were able to work autonomously to capture the images whilst the client focused on their day-to-day tasks within the company.

  • Dirty & Damaged Products – the products were already deployed in the public space so many were dirty and scratched. To get the best possible images, it’s a must to thoroughly clean your product before photographing it. This shoot was no exception.

    Even cleaning the product wasn’t enough in this case. All of the images had to be retouched to remove scratches and blemishes.

Step 3: Delivery & Results:
CIVIQ have achieved an increase in their photo library making it faster and easier to put together marketing campaigns. They have so far been able to utilise some of the images in Christmas cards, EDMs (email marketing), on Instagram and social media.


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