Commercial Photography for Tourism & Economic Development
Don't market a destination; nurture an experience.
Communicating the lifestyle your town offers is crucial for local municipalities and tourism boards in today's media landscape. Gone are the days of planning trips simply off of a friend's recommendation – with the world at their fingertips, today's travelers will do their research before they make their travel plans.
How will they perceive you?
Enter the content library.
Content, content, content. You've undoubtedly heard it at marketing seminars you've been to, that nagging demand for you to shoot more photos, post on this social network and on that one, ask influencers for photos – on and on and on – all in the name of running a successful tourism content strategy.
Running my own business, I know the weight those extraneous tasks pose, and having worked with dozens of business owners, directors, and managers, I know how valuable it is to have a collection of professional images readily available.
That's why I came up with my content library service offering. Here's how it works:
1. Concept Phase.
I partner with your marketing director/manager or another appropriate point person to identify what kind of visitors your department, city, or region attracts and what experiences and activities brings those types of guests to your area.
We then create a shot list of local vistas, landmarks, businesses, and experiences to photograph for your content library. Growing up in a mountainous coastal town and now living in Los Angeles, I know how to get vantage points that appeal to the beach dwellers, urbanites, and mountain explorers.
2. The Photo Shoot.
Guided by the shot list we’ve created, my assistant and I photograph your shot list at the times of day that will give us the best light for your photos.
A typical shoot day will start outdoors before sunrise, move indoors into local businesses for the late morning and afternoon, and head back outdoors for the late afternoon and sunset. We’ll end right after dusk with some “blue hour” photos of your subject of choosing, be that of a local vista, landmark, or business of your choosing.
For two or three day projects, we restart this process the following day!
3. Post-Production & Transfer.
I sort the images down to the top picks – about 300 per day of shooting – and edit them carefully for exposure, contrast, color temperature, and blemishes.
The images are then exported at a high resolution for use on social media channels and an ultra-high resolution for website and print needs, uploaded into your page on my client portal, and sent your way via an easy-to-access and cloud-secured Google Drive download link.
4. Unlimited Image Usage.
The sky is the limit with how you can use your new content library. Update website banner images, schedule posts to an Instagram feed, engage with the Facebook community with daily images – the possibilities are endless!
“Mark is absolutely great to work with from initiation to delivery of assets. He's easy to communicate with, incredibly hard-working, sets clear expectations, asks great questions, does thorough research, painstakingly reviews every detail, and creates compelling storylines. All of this – along with a great eye and a unique creative vision – enable Mark to capture and package photos that other photographers might not get.”
“Mark gave us a great deal for the amount of images he gave us. That really helped seal the deal and ensure we could move forward with the project.”
“I loved the range of images Mark gave us and the different sizes and orientations of each one. I also love the images Mark captured that were outside of my own vision, but still in line with what we needed.”
“Mark is a total pro with a great eye. Not only is his work exceptional, he's wonderful to work with and has my highest recommendation.”
“Mark is an absolute pleasure to work with. I can't say enough about him, his talent and his meticulous level of detail. I would highly recommend him and look forward to working with him again.”
How long after the shoot did you start using your content library?
What are the main scenarios in which you find yourself using images developed during our shoot?
Social media, web, printed materials.
What are some differences you’ve seen in social media engagement since starting to use your content library?
More likes, more followers, more engagement.
What feedback have you received from others about the images you’ve posted from your content library?
Everyone says they love our images!
Is your new content library helping you save time and increase productivity, and if so, how?
YES! I don't have to run out and take a picture for social media. And I have such a range of images that I can work from now for printed materials, so I always have something to work with.
What scenes/collections of images within your content library have you found most useful?
ALL OF IT! I have some of my favorites that I use more than others, but I have cycled through almost every image type.
Would you recommend other organizations in the tourism industry investing in a content library? Why?
Yes! It is invaluable to have professional level photography in a marketer’s tool belt!
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Can we use models in our shoots?
I highly encourage incorporating models into your content library shoot, both for the photos of local businesses and for images of your town’s landmarks. I can arrange professional talent for your shoot if your budget allows for the extra cost, or am happy to work with any volunteer talent you provide for the shoot, be it friends, family, or even your staff. The more the merrier, as long as your staff initiates contact with your volunteer models and has them sign my model release form, which I’ll send ahead of time before the shoot.
2. What types of local businesses can you photograph?
Any shooting your staff helps coordinate with local businesses is within the scope of my content library shoot. Whether it’s a sailing company offering sunset cruises, a vineyard with a top-notch wine-tasting experience, or the local favorite for a morning cup of coffee, I simply ask a member of your staff speaks with their management/ownership to request permission for me to shoot their products or services, and then initiates an email thread with an authorized representative at their company and myself for coordinating shoot logistics.
3. What type of image licensing will we receive for the images you shoot for us?
Images will be licensed on a non-exclusive, unlimited basis for both print and digital media (paid and organic), in any region, in perpetuity. This is an incredibly flexible license – it means you can do virtually anything with the images except for selling or re-licensing them to a third party.
4. What is your turnaround time for the images?
The standard turnaround time for post-production is 4-6 weeks, but arrangements can be made for quicker turnaround times if needed.
I understand – marketing budgets can be tight in this day and age. That’s why I have a value-driven, tiered pricing structure for different shoot lengths based on what my clients’ needs and available budgets are. Need a quick shoot for a website refresh? Let’s chat about a half-day project. Want to knock out several years of content for your social channels while getting the best bang for your buck? A three day shoot is the shoot for you.
One Day Shoot
Two Day Shoot
Three Day Shoot
1. Follow-Up Call.
We'll schedule a time for a phone call to answer any questions you may have and go through my discovery process, which is a chance for me to ask some questions about your town, your typical visitors, your organization’s goals, and your main uses for images. This discussion will help shape the shot list we create together.
2. Final Document Approval.
Based on this phone call and any subsequent follow-up email exchanges, I’ll send a final scope of work document and contract for review and signing by an authorized company representative and an invoice for the project deposit (50% of total project value).
3. Project Start!
Once the signed contract and project deposit are received, we'll officially kick off the project. Your final scope of work and project timeline in your contract will outline the remainder of the steps in the production process.
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Commercial Photography for Tourism & Economic Development