Stock photography and illustration can be found everywhere on the internet. They’re often the cheapest and most convenient way to populate content with visual elements. The convenience and widespread availability of stock images, however, create some problems for those looking to create unique and memorable brand experiences.
The best way to set your business apart and solidify your brand experience is by using custom photography and illustration. Here are a few reasons you should make the investment:
Stock images can often look cheap, generic, or cliché.
Using a typical stock photo of a slightly dated smiling receptionist to exemplify your awesome customer support services is going to fall flat with visitors who have likely seen a similar (if not identical) image on a competitor’s website. This would actually be the perfect opportunity to use custom photography of your actual staff. Using your own photography is unique, specific, and establishes your company’s credibility with visitors.
Custom images reinforce your brand messaging.
Today’s consumers, especially millenials, actively seek authenticity in the products and services that they purchase. Using custom photography and illustration will not just set you apart visually, but will help to establish a solid base of customers through consistent and believable messaging and visual tone. Relevancy and memorability should always be key when selecting images to use to represent your company.
Stock images may be cheaper in the short term, but investing in custom images is smarter in the long run.
Hiring a photographer or illustrator might cost significantly more upfront, but will spare you the long term costs associated with searching for relevant images and editing them to fit in with the overall look of your company. The long term success of your company is also likely dependent on customer loyalty; give them a unique and immersive experience that will keep them coming back for more.
Visitors are quick to pick up on the use of stock images and will evaluate your company accordingly, however, in the event that stock photography is your only option, avoid generic images that cheapen or diminish the integrity of your brand and seek ways to stylize your purchases to best integrate it into existing elements associated with your look. If you want your brand to be original and unforgettable, invest in unique custom work to help push your brand further.