How to make your listing stand out with photos
Human beings are visual creatures. Photos enable us to dream. We imagine ourselves in the photo or video; seeing ourselves taking that break or having that experience. Photos should ideally include people so your audience can relate. They don’t need to be staged, it’s more important that they’re authentic.
Below are some helpful tips on how to get great shots, which can add meaning to your ATDW listing.
- Get a good camera: These days, digital cameras are inexpensive and allow you to experiment without wasting film and developing costs. However, if you don’t want to buy a new camera, the latest smart phones can take photos and videos with remarkable quality. Just make sure your phone camera settings are correct for the highest possible resolution.
- Decide which shots will mean the most to potential customers. Try taking yourself on a “photographic holiday”. Look online or in magazines for photos that inspire you. What kind of story do those photos evoke? Now think of photos that will inspire people in the same way about your business or event. Think about the shots like someone who doesn’t know what you’re offering.
- Make sure your photos are ones that will add extra meaning to your listing. You want your photos to highlight your unique selling proposition and show something you didn’t have enough words to describe. ie. Depict the experience where possible.
- How to show your location at its best. Your photos must accurately reflect your business. A location shot should engage, inspire, motivate, invite and show off your strong points without giving false impressions. Honesty will result in better reviews, which will result in more customers. Think about using different camera angles and take a selection of photos at the most appealing time of day (e.g. sunrise)
- Think about views, but make sure you’re captioning views appropriately e.g. “view from the top of the nearby hill”, or “Dining room view from units 1-4”
- Show a variety of photos
- with people (remember your target markets)
- without people
- that are close ups
- with wide angle panoramas
- of different room types (for accommodation)
- of different meals (for restaurants)
- of inside shots
- of outside shots
- with different vehicles or destinations (for hire and tours)
- The Wix blog has a great post “7 Photography Tips for Shooting Interiors Like a Pro”. http://www.wix.com/blog/2013/11/interior-photography-tips/
- Include experiential and emotional photos for greater appeal. It’s great to have shots of people experiencing your business or event. Some customers will see themselves in those photos. Other times they’ll want to picture themselves in a people-free space. Traditionally, eastern markets like Asia tend to respond more to shots with people, whereas Western audiences prefer big open spaces.
- Keeping your photos current and real. Staged, over produced shots look unreal and don’t appeal. Consider using or taking shots with real people. Keep in mind that changing fashions and hairstyles can date a photo. Changing technology can also date a photo, so update your photos when you update your facilities. Remember to turn off the date stamp on your camera before you start.
- If you’re using any people in your promotional photos (even in the background) you’ll need those people to sign a release form. The release form should be designed to permit you to use the person in your photos which will be used for commercial purposes.
- The importance of high resolution photos: Many people will see your listing on a tablet, smartphone or iPad. It will look much better on these devices if you’ve used high resolution photos. Your photos will often appear next to those of your competitors. Ensure they’re high resolution and promoting you in the best way possible. The ATDW automatically adjust your photos to ensure they load quickly as part of your ATDW listing, regardless of size.
- For your ATDW listing, there is a limit on the number of photos, so choose 1 – 10 images that best reflect your business.
ATDW also has a few additional guidelines on size and orientation of your photos so check the requirements below before your start.
- photos must be in jpeg or png format
- minimum image dimensions are:2048 x 1536 pixels
This required image size can easily be captured on many smartphones and inexpensive digital cameras.
- The image file size cannot be bigger than 10MB
- Only landscape pictures are accepted
- No logos or text on images can be accepted
The ATDW-Online system will indicate if your photos do not meet the minimum requirements and ask you to replace these. A convenient photo uploading tool is available to help crop your images to the correct dimensions. See this video for a demonstration: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tbj3NcVY6vA&feature=youtu.be )
Important to note: On the new ATDW-Online platform, at least one of your images will need to meet the new photo dimension criteria, for any changes or updates to be accepted to your ATDW listing.
What better way is there to sell a tourism experience than through beautiful, inspiring images. We hope this blog inspires you to start snapping and posting great photos to your ATDW listing.