Here we are at the beginning of December. It’s easy to be in a flat spin trying to get organised for Christmas. But now is just the exact right time to start planning for 2023 and business growth in the coming year, if you’ve not already started.

Do you hate me already? Feel you have enough to do?

I know there’s enough to do without adding forward planning in, but, it’s just so very important, and you do want your best year next year don’t you?

This is one of my favourite parts of the year, looking back at what has worked, what hasn’t and what to change up, start or stop for the coming year. It’s a great thing to do as the year draws to a close.

Where is photography on your list of objectives for 2023? Is it at the bottom or has it not even made the list? I think it needs to be top of that list, especially if you want to achieve more sales and ride out this recession. Yes I’m a photographer and of course I’m biased but there are good reasons and here they are.

The Problem

It’s easy to think that all you need to do is to take a quick snap of your product whether that’s an actual product, food, drink, whatever and that’s the job done, get it out there and people will come rushing.

But then they don’t …. or not in the numbers you’d like. Why do you think that is?

Additionally who has ‘actual’ time to plan ahead? Is this you? Are you always flying by the seat of your pants with what to post on social media, images to use for other marketing purposes and so on? Are new products ready for market before anyone has considered images?

If so then this post is for you!

Planning in advance is the best solution, here’s why

The images you use on your website, social media, in marketing, actually anywhere, need to do so much more than just show people what they could buy. If you sell the best croissant’s for miles which are hand made, way larger than the competition and which are melt in the mouth delicious, then these facts have to come through in your images and make you want to sink your teeth into that croissant right now! That’s the way to get sales!

Blackcurrant, Apple & Liquorice Jam all set for breakfast or afternoon tea, in pastel colours with flowers. Photography by Sue Todd Photography. Compelling desire in prospective buyers is key to creating business growth.

Creating desire in prospective buyers is key to creating business growth.

Those images don’t make themselves and a fast snap on an iPhone may ‘make do’ but is your brand about ‘making do’? Is that how you want to show up for customers? As someone who makes do?

Great images that pop off the page, are planned in advance, they are rarely spur of the moment things. If you’ve got your images planned out for the year ahead, you’ll save lots of energy, time and patience when you get an opportunity for PR that comes winging your way as you’ll be ready to go!

Got an event coming up, special offers, something in the press about you? These all need imagery and leaving them to the last minute won’t get best results. So that’s why planning ahead is such a big deal.

What to consider before you start – to maximise business growth

It’s necessary to consider what will tempt your ideal customer to rush over and buy from you. And a plain image on a slightly grey background isn’t going to cut it. Several different products on differing grey backgrounds that look like they ought to have been the same certainly isn’t going to cut and neither is badly lit food.

A fresh croissant, still warm, being spread with butter that’s melting fast with a jar of homemade jam beside it (or substitute anything else your target audience may love to have) and that’s going to start getting the mouth watering effect you need. It’s about setting the scene and the expectations. Fresh mince in a pre-pack won’t get the mouth watering at all, but pop that mince on a board with some fresh herbs and the hint of a good meal getting started and you’ll pique interest.

Mouth watering pastries from Pink Lane Bakery on a wooden board.

Mouth Watering pastries from Pink Lane Bakery. They are as huge and totally delicious as they look.

If your images don’t do that, you are losing customers right away, and they aren’t coming back!

It’s the photographer’s eye for detail, their knowledge of lighting, their vast experience that you are paying for when you hire a professional food photographer to shoot for you. That can make a huge difference to your imagery and the way your brand is received across the board not just by your target market.

Take a moment this month before Christmas to just make a few notes on what you need to think about next year when it comes to imagery.

  • What new products are coming on board?
  • What events are you planning to hold or attend?
  • What special occasions are coming up for your business that you want to have images for? New equipment, new premises, new staff.
  • What do you want to promote?
  • What do you want for social media? Have you got a plan
  • Are there awareness days you’d like to have something ready for?
  • Do you have seasonal products? Valentines, Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter, Christmas, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day etc

With your list of imagery needs, a note about your ideal client and the sort of things that will appeal to them, you’ll have made a great start on Image Planning for 2023. And now I’m going to tell you how to lessen the workload on yourself and take the stress away of actually producing all these images.

Maximising Business Growth in 2023 with the right photography.

That little bit of planning can make all the difference in the world. Communicate that early to your photographer and they’ll have more time to come up with ideas to help you as well and can advise on how far ahead you ought to be getting the imagery ready.

For instance I started talking with a client in January this year about their Product Catalogue for Christmas 2022 and we did the shoot in August, so that they had lots of time to work on the new look and feel  for their catalogue which they were updating.  This meant we had a list of the shots needed, which shots needed white space for titles and which shots were needed landscape and portrait.  This all meant that we had props and cooking orders all sorted for the actual shoot well in advance.

A Vintage 1880 Hamper from Turnbulls Northumbrian Foods.

A Vintage 1880 Hamper from Turnbulls Northumbrian Foods – planned well in advance to maximise potential

As we go into this recession and everyone thinks about pulling in the purse strings, consider how you are going to stand out in the market next year, reach more of a reducing audience and not just continue but achieve real business growth. Amateur photographs won’t help you achieve that at all. Stand out, beautifully captured, exquisitely edited images that make people ‘crave’ what you offer will help though.

What route will you take in 2023? Photography is one of the best investments you can make for the coming year for business growth!
If you are ready to explore how I can help you then please get in touch.  If you’d like to see more of my work take a look on my LinkedIn Profile and do send me a connection request there.