Now I know we are only just coming out of what feels like a long winter – the big coats have been packed away and we are considering if we need sun lotion in our bags (I always go pink at the slightest hint of summer!)
But in the world of marketing and brand photography, it’s that time of year again to be thinking of some winter campaigns with clients so I wanted to share some tips for creating seasonal imagery for your brand.
Christmas in July
For a stress free lead up to Christmas, planning ahead is my biggest piece of advice. There is a reason that “Christmas in July” is a real thing in retail and press. Campaigns are being planned and shot now ready for Christmas gift guides being put together. As with any shoot, you have to work backwards from when you want to start using the images, and for any sort of festivity you need to think about when your customers will start buying. For instance, Christmas will generally see people buying from Halloween. But for things like Mother’s day, Father’s day, Halloween and Valentines day it’s more likely a few weeks.
If you make bespoke items then also add in that lead time as you will want to start warming up your audience a bit earlier. For instance, I’ve ordered some handmade Christmas stockings already, knowing they’ll take a few weeks and I don’t want to get caught in any postal strikes, influx of orders etc. Now I know that’s extreme, but if you know your customers are planners then the earlier you are prepared the more likely you’ll have those orders in.
Think of your marketing strategy
Where are you planning on using those images? This will guide the type of images you need, for instance:
*Social media – portrait images for stories and reel covers, landscape for Facebook page headers, square crop for Instagram grid
*Email marketing – landscape images with negative space for overlaying text
*E-commerce sites – do you want lifestyle images or the white cut out images
*PR – different publications may have different requirements, who do you want to pitch to
When it comes to props and styling, if you’re shooting in the summer you may need to fake those Christmas and wintery feels with artificial Christmas trees, festive jumpers and even fake snow! Yes it may be 30 degrees out there (ok I can dream) but for the sake of great imagery, popping on a Christmas jumper may be required!
And this is where using a shoot house is great too, because you’re able to create and set the scenes you need. Want something cozy? Try a house with a fireplace. There’s literally a house for any setting you need to create.
It’s not just for product businesses
Every business should be considering what events their target audience celebrates and creating images accordingly. It shows that you understand your clients, that you’re relevant to them and it fosters that know, like and trust factor. So whether you are wishing your clients a Happy Diwali, Happy Hanukkah or Happy Christmas – what image can you put alongside that social media post or email out to your clients?
Have fun with it
Seasonal marketing campaigns are meant to grab your customers attention so here’s your opportunity to flex some creativity and make some memorable imagery that tells a story and hooks them in.
And if you’re wanting to have a seasonal shoot to create some of this much needed marketing collateral then I’d love to chat. You can find out more at www.akpbrandingstories.co.uk or follow me on Instagram @akpbrandingstories