A Beginner’s Guide to Product Photography

Episode 017

In this episode we cover EVERYTHING a beginner needs to know about product photography.  We break down common language used in product photography.  (3) of the BEST options to use for product photography including best practices and what IS converting on Amazon.  Lastly, we share who we use for product photography in our business.

Viral-Launch (Highly recommend!)
Splitly <– Split Testing POST-Launch
Pickfu <– Split Test Pre-Launch
Canon Rebel EOS T7 <—DSLR Camera
MacBook Air
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David (00:00):
The human brain processes pictures 60,000 times faster than text. These kids don’t know how good they have it with Glorifyapp and Canva, they don’t know what it was like.

Intro (00:13):
Welcome everyone to the www.firingtheman.com Podcast, a show for anyone who wants to be their own boss. If you sit in a cubicle every day and know you were capable of more than join us, this show will help you build a business and grow your passive income streams in just a few short hours per day and now your host serial entrepreneurs, David Schomer and Ken Wilson.

David (00:37):
All right, welcome everyone to the firing the man podcast. Today’s episode is going to be the beginner’s guide to product photography included. In this episode, you’re going to hear the three options you have when it comes to product photography, how you can save money or how you can get awesome images. We’re also going to talk about 10 best practices for photography. Ken and I are going to mention a couple professional photographers that we’ve worked with in the past and pass along some recommendations to them and we’ll finish this up with five best practices for dealing with professional photographers. So Ken to get started, if you had to pick between a perfect listing, like an awesome written listing, it’s loaded with keywords or really good images, which one would you pick?

New Speaker (01:25):
Really good images. Yeah, same.

David (01:27):
Yep. Same. Obviously it’s been really interesting being an Amazon seller and an Amazon buyer and trying to think about my customer experience. If I go through my last say, 10 orders that I’ve made on Amazon, if I look at their product photography, most of it, it is usually very high quality. And it’s not something that I think about. I don’t think wow, they have good images. It, it must be a good product. But I have found that good images attract me to buy something. And uh, and as we’ll talk about more, I split test everything. Can, I know you split test everything. The better quality images, images I have, the more my conversion rate goes up and the better I do in business. So it’s something that’s really important. And, uh, as I like to start off some of our episodes with a quote, I’m going to start one off that most people I’ve heard, uh, a picture speaks a thousand words, right? If you heard that.

New Speaker (02:26):
Yeah, I have. Yep. That is true. So true.

David (02:29):
So what I found as I was prepping for this episode, that that phrase should actually be a picture, speaks 60,000 words. And at that is because the human brain processes pictures 60,000 times faster than text, which is nuts.

Ken (02:45):
Oh wow. I didn’t know that.

David (02:46):
Yeah. I mean it’s, it’s uh, absolutely nuts. And the more I look into it, so they were saying that, uh, human beings were, were 90% of the information that we communicate to the brain is through visuals in that, you know, humans are visual creatures and so it makes sense when we’re shopping that what’s in front of us in terms of pictures is really important. So, but anyway, one thing I’d like to, before we dive into this episode, uh, too deep, I’d like to talk about some common language you’re going to hear in the photography space.

David (03:20):
The first one is hero image. Uh, when you’re shopping on Amazon or on a Shopify store, really, wherever this is the first image you see, in my opinion, this is the most important image and a one where I spend the most time and effort into making it look really good. The second is an infographic. So this is typically just a, a graphic that provides some sort of detail on product features. Usually it has text. This could be a sizing chart. This could be, say you’re selling phone cases, this could be a, a pencil sitting next to a phone case showing how thin it is. It just providing more info about that product. And then the last piece of common languages, a lifestyle image, and this is somebody using your product. And so the perfect Amazon listing to me has a good blend as good hero image. It has good infographics and it has good lifestyle images.

Ken (04:19):
So David, I’m a dummy when it comes to photography. So when I first started, you know, I fumbled around for a really long time. So for our new listeners and you know, if you’re gonna start a business, what are some of the options that you have available? You know, and where should someone start?

David (04:36):
Yeah, absolutely. So option one is going to be the least expensive, uh, but probably the highest investment at time. And that’s where you’re taking your own pictures and you’re doing your own editing. And so some pros of this is no one cares as much as you do about your business. And so when it comes to getting the perfect angle or the perfect shot, you’re likely going to invest more time than somebody that you hire. Hire this out too. Now, some cons, it takes a lot of time and taking the photographs is just the starting point.

David (05:12):
Often times there’s a lot of editing that goes on behind the scenes to make these infographics and to make the lifestyle images. And so this is something, and I’ve talked about it on previous episodes, is that it takes a lot of time to learn Photoshop. And I think if you’re not fluent in Photoshop or some of these other online tools, this may be a good thing to outsource and that, and that brings me to a option number two and that’s where you’re, you’re taking your own pictures but you’re outsourcing the editing and graphics. And this is actually what I do in my business and a couple key points here that have really helped me in my business do this. Number one, anyone who is currently selling on Amazon, this will be familiar to them. You need to have an all white background on, uh, on your hero image and that is a total pain in the ass to do on Photoshop.

David (06:06):
At least it was for me. So one thing that’s really helped me take my own pictures has been the Amazon seller central app. If you download that, it’s the free download on, on from the app store. If you go down to product photo studio, this is a type of photo similar to like portrait mode on iPhone or panoramic. And what this does is it creates the all white background for you and creates a lot less headaches for the, the editing. It also creates the picture in the right pixel format and uh, and is all around a great attachment if you’re shooting pictures on a phone. The second thing is a, an led light box from Amazon basics. And as I mentioned, having a white background is something that’s really important for your hero image. And I’ve seen people do this in like a white bathtub, but one thing that I bought in, Oh, we’ll put a link to it in the show notes, but uh, Amazon basics for 135 bucks.

David (07:05):
It’s a 25 inch by 30 inch by 25 inch led light box. And this is, it folds up easily, goes under a bed. But this has been great for lighting. You know, I’m not super fluent in the ins and outs of taking a great photo. However, I do know that lighting is important. And having this light box has been super handy, especially, you know, I kind of divide sellers into two camps. The first camp is, is somebody who has a lot of base hits. They have a lot of products that they sell, a few of like a lot of variations, and that’s kind of my sweet spot. Then there’s on the other side of the coin, you have sellers, they have just a few products, but they’re very high volume and I think those high volume sellers are better off outsourcing this. But if you have a lot of different variations, like different colors and whatnot, I think you really can save a good amount of money, uh, by doing this at home and that led light box.

David (08:04):
And if you have a reasonably new smartphone, I think you have everything that you need, uh, to take the photos at home and then kick them over to a, you know, a VA to edit in the Philippines or something like that. Now, one thing that, one question that I had on this as I was prepping for this was, you know, the iPhone versus say, a DSLR camera. What’s better, you know, at the iPhone 11 recently came out and they have really talked about how that camera has all these new features. Um, but what I found, and I actually talked to a friend of mine that, uh, is very much into photography and he said that the DSLR cameras are still, uh, above and beyond a higher quality image than just your, your point. And shoot I iPhones or smartphone.

Ken (08:57):
So David, I am a novice. I ha I have no experience with photography. What the hell is it? DSLR.

David (09:05):
So at DSLR, glad you asked Ken. It’s a digital single lens reflex camera. And what that does is an that is different from a point in shoot camera. So like your, your phone is a point in shoot camera. Uh, your typical like smaller, uh, like Nikon cameras. Those are point and shoot cameras. The DSLR cameras are typically bigger. And here’s a couple of features about them that make them a better candidate for product photography. Then say your iPhone or if you want to step up your game, here’s why DSLRs, good move. You’re going to have better image quality in the images are going to be less grainy. You’re also going to have better sensitivity to light. And the shutter in focus speeds are better than than a point and shoot camera. And so I currently shoot a lot of my product photos on my iPhone and that’s good enough for me.

David (10:06):
However, I am considering upgrading to a DSLR camera. And so on this phone call with my buddy that’s a photographer, he said that the Canon EOS rebel T7 is an, I’ll put a link to this in the show notes, is a really good starter kit for someone who wants to get a DSLR camera. He said on on Amazon, you can get a, there’s a starter kit with different lenses, a camera stand, a bunch of memory cards for $459 bucks. So I think if you’re going to do a lot of photography at home, this might not be a bad investment. I would say money is better spent on that light box if you have something that’ll fit in there.

Ken (10:49):
Yeah, absolutely. I think if you’re a DIY kind of person, um, you know, doing your own photos at home is if you can do it at a professional quality level or at a high level, and it’s probably worth in the long run, especially like you said, David, if you have a, if you have a lot of products, wide variety, outsourcing that to a professional could get very expensive very quick. Absolutely. Absolutely.

David (11:18):
So I started that long rant with three options. And so the third option for photography is to outsource the photography and the editing. And this is where, you know, I’ve used people on Upwork, I’ve also hired photography agencies that specialize in product photography. And those are typically who I like to go with nowadays for some of my new products. Now, some pros, this is going to be typically the highest quality image and it’s going to save you time. You know, we always talk about work on your business, not in your business. We’ll take him product photos is working in your business. And if this is something that you don’t enjoy or you don’t think you’re going to do a good job, you’re better off outsourcing it. Now the cons is it’s the most expensive and typically the better quality photos you get, the more you’re going to pay for those. You also have to ship items to the photographer and it’s just an added step to the process. However, I think that this is, especially for people that plan on selling at a high volume and don’t have a ton of variations, I think this is the sweet spot.

Ken (12:25):
Yeah. One other thing I’d like to add is if kind of a, a tip, if you have a local photographer in your area that you know, or if you want to reach out and find a local photographer in your area it’s a lot easier. You know, you can kind of go and deliver there or you could even, some of them might even let you go in for the photo shoot and you could, you know, kind of help out and drop off the products, pick them up and it’s quicker maybe.

David (12:47):
Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. And I think just having somebody local, it’s nice cause it’s easier to communicate with them or you could be there for the photo shoot, gives you a little more oversight. So yeah, I think that’s, that’s what you use in your business. Correct. Yes.

Ken (13:01):
Use both. And you know, some of the cons with the services that I use, you know, sometimes they have long lead times, you know, two weeks, three weeks. And if, you know, if I’m busy and I, I forget that I got a product launch coming up and I, and I get my sample and it just doesn’t work out. So yeah, lo a local right now I have a, a local, a photographer that I use and you know, he’s got a, you know, three to five day turnaround time, you know, depending on his schedule and I can go there and watch the shoot or drop off the product. So yeah, it works out good. Nice. Nice. So David, I see here that you’ve went really, really deep on your research for this show. Can you share with the audience some of the best practices for photography?

David (13:41):
Yeah, absolutely. So number one is the all white background image for your hero image and I think that having an all white background for all your photos to start off with is ideal because then you can splice some and resize them and I think that’s just the easiest way to go about it. Some people use white poster board, I prefer the light box because it has the led lights in there and it just, it eliminate shadows. But having an all white background is super important. It minimizes distractions and the Amazon best practices currently ask that your hero image fills up 85% of the frame and that makes sense. You know there’s a ton of people shopping on mobile right now and so when they’re flipping through, you want, you know, 85% or more of that image to be showing up on their screen. Yeah, you want your product right in their face. Second best practice for product photography is split test, split test, split test. Now there are a couple of ways that you can do this. One that I’ve recently started doing is using this website called www.Pickfu.com. Have you heard of this?

Ken (14:49):
Yes, I used it on my last product.

David (14:51):
And what, what did you think of it?

Ken (14:53):
I thought it was amazing. You can get split test results from a very targeted audience in a very fast time.

David (15:01):
Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. So this, this tool allows you to do split test before you upload your images. And so one thing that I do a lot is when I outsource photography, I always have them do three hero images. And what www.Pickfu.com Does is you can upload two images and it will show it to a targeted audience. So for instance, if you wanted females making over a hundred thousand dollars, if that was your target market pick food, we’ll put two images in front of them and then they will pick what their preference is. And this is really good information because on a product launch you want to put your best foot forward. And so I think knowing, you know, out of a sample of 50 people, 40 of them preferred this image gives you some more confidence in your listing.

David (15:45):
And so kind of the second piece of this split testing. So www.Pickfu.com, great for prelaunch. Now in post-launch you’ll also want to do some split testing and I use www.Splitly.com You use Splitly and that’s a really nice service that you can toggle every 24 hours. It’ll change between two different main images or two different titles and it’ll show you the statistical significance of which images is preferred, which creates the highest conversion rate. And so, you know, one thing I’ve noticed in my business is oftentimes the pictures that I like the most are not the ones that my audience likes the most and they’re the ones that are most important. And so I think that that using www.Pickfu.com on the front end Splitly on the back end is a great best practice for product photography.

Ken (16:33):
David, I would like to just add one thing to that. The results from those equal margin, which is money profit dough. So the more testing you do, the more margin profit and dough you will make.

David (16:50):
Perfect. Yet no, absolutely. Absolutely. It’s a split. Testing is huge. And you know, before some of these services came out, you had to, uh, you had to be really good with Excel and have a ton of time on your hands to go back through spreadsheets and look at gnat’s ass details like conversion rates for, you know, a handful of your product, your product yeah. All right. Best practice number three. Amazon currently gives you nine spots for images, fill all of those. And uh, in no this on the front end that if you’re doing your own photography that you’re going to want to take, you know, nine or 10 different shots from different angles just so you give your photographer something to work with.

Ken (17:35):
Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, you definitely want to fill up all of the slots available. Now whether, you know mobile has less slots I think than desktop, but I believe you. Yeah. Nine and just fill them all up.

David (17:47):
Yeah. The, the only time wouldn’t do that is when you have a video and I would just reserve one slot for a video. I like to put that in spot number five, uh, cause when you’re on desktop, that’s the last picture. And it puts a play sign on that image. And so that’s been a, I haven’t split tested that on Splitly. However, I can speak to the end user experience or like the shopper experience. Whenever I see that there’s a video, I skipped through all the pictures and watched the video. Absolutely.

Ken (18:16):
Yeah. Video converts way more than than a still image for sure. For sure.

David (18:22):
Best practice number four, know your audience. Now I have a really good example of this. I like this. A couple of years ago I thought about, I was researching the speed boat anchor market. I thought I was going to launch, you know, and maybe it’s still a good market, but I was really looking into this deep and there was one particular seller that his main image was a really hot girl holding a speedboat anchor and as it and it, and I just, I think that this kind of illustrates my point pretty well is that that target audience was, you know, speedboat owners, it’s primarily male and in that type of photo is catering to that audience. And so I think that knowing your market is huge, right? So like knowing what’s my average age, what’s the typical gender, what do those people like. You know, if you’re selling Harleys, you’re going to want some people wearing some leather.

David (19:23):
You know, you’ve got to cater to your market. Absolutely. Another person, uh, so I saw Ezra Firestone speak at seller con last year and so he owns boom, it’s a women’s pro aging makeup company. When he says pro aging, that is his target market is 50 years and up and so on. All of his infographics on all of his YouTube videos and demonstration videos, it’s women in the 50 to 70 year range doing those videos. Cause he said one thing, women in particular, I’ve been told like, you’re not good enough. Aging is bad, fight aging as long as you can. And so he said the last thing you know, an older gal would like to see is a 20 year old girl putting on makeup. Right? And so I really thought that, you know, he talked about catering to that audience and putting people in front of them that are similar and that the end customer can relate to.

Ken (20:23):
Yeah, absolutely. And I think another, another point too is a lot of times I forget about this personally and I have to kinda turn on the switch and become the customer. You know, we always, we, we sit in the owner chair and and making you know decisions. But at the end of the day, if you can turn that switch and put yourself in the customer’s seat of what you would like to see and what you would want buy, what would interest you, you know, that’s the name of the game if you can figure that out.

David (20:51):
Absolutely. So number five, if you’re doing lifestyle images, I like to put my logo in the bottom right hand or bottom left hand corner. So this doesn’t happen all the time, but I’m always sensitive to getting my images ripped off. And this comes from a story from my own supplier. I had ordered something from them. I thought we had a good relationship. And then I got on their website and I saw some of my product images just copy and paste it right out of my Amazon listing or they took screenshots of them and re posted them. And so this is, you know, can you Photoshop out a label or a logo? Yeah, you can. However, that is a barrier that they would need to overcome. And so I put logos, you know, in a, if I have a lifestyle image in white text in the bottom right hand corner, I like to put that down there.

David (21:46):
And, uh, you know, it helps with brand recognition. It’s very subtle, but it also kind of is a nice defense to play against someone that has bad intentions.

Ken (21:56):
You know, David, that’s something that I do not do and I, I need to start doing that. When you, when you told your story about, you saw your image on, I have three competitors right now that have taken my professional image that I paid viral launch for and they are using it in their listing and theirs. And I have no way to, you know, like I’ve told Amazon and they’re not, you know, they’re not going to take it down there. I can do anything. They put their branding on it. Like what the hell? So, yeah. Uh, it’s like you said, you know, professional, uh, Photoshop person could probably Photoshop it out, but it’s a, but how much time and effort is that worth? So yeah, I’m going to start putting my logos in and especially the lifestyle images, those are the ones that people steal from me.

David (22:41):
Oh, is the worst. It was, I was salty about that one. It was a, so there was a company called AMC dream. They’ve since went out of business, but they, uh, did product photos and that was the first set of professional photos that I’d ever paid for. I think I paid like about 500 bucks for, you know, the eight or nine pictures for my Amazon listing. And I remember seeing that my blood pressure just shot through the roof. And I got on, we chat. It was the middle of the day. So, uh, my contact at in China was asleep and I wanted to yell at somebody that day, but they were sleeping. So I had to wait 12 hours to communicate my frustrations and by then I kind of cooled off and was able to communicate in a more reasonable way. But man, that was the worst. And so that’s ever since then I put, I put my logo on all my lifestyle images and uh, it doesn’t take too long.

Ken (23:35):
One other thing too, it kind of a more of a funny story. Uh, I actually found my lifestyle photo on Alibaba. You’re shitting me. So this was a supplier that it don’t work with anymore. Took my photo, put it on Alibaba and was advertising their products so that, so adding a logo might might stop that too.

David (23:56):
But you know, I am, I am not a huge fan of red tape or regulation, but it still is the wild West on the internet. There is no, you know, if I were to go into a, going to a sporting goods store and just ride a bike out the front door, I’d be arrested. However someone can come on my Amazon listing, steal $500 worth the Amazon images and nothing happens. There’s zero repercussions. And so I’m all about playing good defense and uh, I think that’s a good way to do it. And this kind of dovetails really nice into the sixth best practice, which is Canva. This is an online Photoshop. You’ve heard Ken and I talk about it.

David (24:37):
Uh, but it’s really easy just to take a lifestyle image, upload it to Canva and then you can add your logo on. It’s super easy. I don’t like Photoshop. I got rid of my license awhile ago. But Canva is a really slick way to just make infographics and add your logo. And Ken, you’ve recently found a new Photoshop tool that you say Trump’s Canva.

Ken (25:01):
I have, yes, it’s called glorify app. And I’ve been using it for about two weeks now and I’m very, very impressed. Uh, you know, it’s, they have a pretty good pricing out right now cause the tool just got released. And what I’ve noticed with it right now is it’s, it’s has way more features than Canva and it’s specifically designed for e-commerce sellers. So some of the modules that it has are templates. It has e-commerce templates, it has ebook templates, uh, you know, and a lot more, eh, not to, not to get too far off the off the path here, but one of the really cool, uh, tricks that it does is, is uh, it has a, it’s called background remover.

Ken (25:45):
So like you mentioned earlier, light boxes and if you take your product and you put it in, in a bathtub and you know, you do all this stuff and get everything right, well this tool, you could put your product on a table, take a picture of it, load it up and take this background remover tool and you just swipe across the background where you want it to be removed and it removes it. And then it has shadowing and it has a built in templates for infographics. And uh, yeah, it’s, it’s really, really cool. So if you’re into that kind of stuff, go check out glorify app.

David (26:20):
You know, I’m going to sound like an old fart right now, but these kids don’t know how good they have it with glorifying, with Canva, they don’t know what it was like to watch 40 hours of YouTube and still be mediocre to shitty at Photoshop. You don’t know what it’s like. And so boy, I guess that was a, I built it as character building experience, that’s for sure. But also that I’m never going to get back. So right. Check out Canva.

Ken (26:46):
Absolutely. And glorify app, you know, prior to that to remove the background at a kind of zoom way in and take a little tracing tool and then cut around the edges. Yeah, when I saw this I was like, Oh man, I want to go and upload 50 images and take the background out for fun.

David (27:05):
All right, so number seven is provide some context around your product size. Uh, so the thing that comes to mind when I talk about this is the Mac book air. They have a photo with a number two pencil sitting right next to the MacBook air. And for context, it shows you that the MacBook air is about the same height as a number two pencil. This doesn’t make a difference on like standard sized products or for products where people already know like a spatula. People typically know what the size of a typical special is. But on certain products I think that this is really good to provide a reference. And you know, that can be through an infographic that says this is 15 inches long or it can be through something like a pencil sitting next to a MacBook air.

Ken (27:55):
Yeah, that’s huge. I think I’ve seen all, yeah, all kinds. Like a quarter, you know, if, if you can look at it and imagine, imagine that product in your hand or size, then you know, then the, then you, you put the customer in that image, you know, you translate it like, Hey, it’s there. Absolutely. So David, what if you have really good packaging, how would you incorporate that

David (28:19):
if you’ve got it, flaunt it. Yeah, yeah, absolutely. So, you know, one thing I think customers really like to know is what’s this gonna look like when it shows up at my house? And so for instance, one is a www.butcherbox.com, They do what not to sponsor the show, but they, uh, it’s like, yeah, not yet. It’s mail order meat. That sounds funny, but you know what I mean. But yeah, if you want, you know, six chicken breasts and eight pounds of ground beef a month, they’ll just mail it to you and it shows up frozen. And in their product ads it shows you this styrofoam container with dry ice in it. And I think, you know, one of my concerns if I was ordering meat online would be, you know, what, if I’m not home or what if it sits outside all day, it’ll go bad.

David (29:09):
And that solves that problem. You know, you can see their packaging. And so I think if you have really good packaging, which we’re always talking about ways to differentiate yourself, so you should, but if, if you have really good packaging than flaunt it and show it in, in the photo. And I’ve even seen people put packaging in the hero image. I haven’t, I don’t know if that’s technically against terms of service. However that is what they’re getting. That’s what’s showing up at the front door. And I think you can make a pretty good case including your packaging within your hero image.

Ken (29:44):
Yeah, I have my packaging and most of my hero images. Okay. Actually all of them all except you know most of them. Yeah. Cause you’re right, it is part of the product is what you’re receiving. And I think that’s crucial point of sale and customer experience is like you just said, Hey this is what you’re going to be getting. You know, I’ll give you an example. My son, you know, he’s into the ticktock phase right now. So he’s always watching these tick-tock videos and they, and the advertisers are on there now and They’re their pawning these, you know, cheap shit. Right? So my son comes to me, dad, I want to get this, I want to get this. Like, all right, so I’ll go on Amazon and get it shows up in a, in a, you know, a crappy little polybag, right?

Ken (30:28):
Well, on the listing you see it and it’s just a big image of this item, right? And then when you get it, it’s a shitty polybag versus if you’re looking for something that you want and you see a nice branded packaging, then you think, well that, you know, whoever’s selling that product took time to make that packaging and that product is going to be probably higher level two. Right? So if you have two products at one by one, one does not have a box, one has a packaging, you’re going to be like, ah, you know, what would you pick David?

David (30:57):
Yeah, I mean I picked the one with good packaging all day. Yeah. All day. You know, another, just, this is a tangent, but it’s a good tangent. So let’s, let’s keep exploring this. Another thing I’ve seen with packaging in a couple instances is making it in the size that’s compatible with something else. So, for instance, I ordered some checks the other day and that box it said in the box, this is a perfect little box to put cash in and it fits a dollar bill perfectly nice. Another thing I’ve seen is a product packaging that uh, for instance say it’s something that’s pet related. The packaging turns into a portable water bowl. And so I think, you know, people really like the sustainable packaging and uh, eliminating waste. And so if you’re thinking about having good packaging, think about what else could this be used for?

Ken (31:51):
Yeah. Now that’s pretty cool. I have not seen that yet, but I, you know, just adds at another level of customer experience, right? For sure.

David (31:59):
So number nine is take good images. There is a saying I really like, you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. Can you expand what a sow is David? A Sow is a female pig. Okay. And so you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. Why this is relevant is if you have a bad image or a bad picture and you send it to the best photo editor in the world, they’re still going to struggle to make it look good. So my point is, if you take bad images. A really good photo editor is not going to be able to help you out. It’s just you need to have high quality images. So, you know, use the Amazon studio, use a DSLR camera, uh, use a camera stand. Don’t just hold the camera, uh, but take good images and uh, that the end product being a lifestyle. image an infographic will benefit from that.

Ken (32:54):
Yeah, for sure. I was going to say it was, it’s, so you’re saying like you don’t want to Polish a turd,

David (33:00):
you don’t want to Polish a turd. That’s right. All right, that’s right. This last one, and this is a, I saved this and for anybody selling anything that is metal, this is a pro tip amongst pro tips. There is a product called Brasso, B. R, a. S. S. O. It’s a Tarnish remover and metal Polish and it makes anything metal look awesome in. So photogenic. If you look at like a lot of refrigerator or stainless steel appliance photos, I guarantee that they use Brasso on that metal before they shoot those photos. It makes it look really smooth and silky. It makes a huge deal. I have a lot of products that have a metal component and I put Brasso on every single one of them and just with a paper towel and Brasso it shines it up.

David (33:54):
Nice. And so if you don’t sell any metal products, this isn’t that important to you. But uh, if you sell metal products, it’s like three bucks at the, you know, Menard’s or Lowe’s or home Depot. But check it out cause I, that is bet takes anything metal and just makes it look awesome.

Ken (34:12):
Nice. Putting some lipstick on a pig. That’s right. That’s right. That’s pretty cool. Now that’s a great tip. okay, so David , just a wrap up. You’ve, you’ve covered 10 best practices for photography in depth and really drop some knowledge as we kind of shift gears here. Um, you had mentioned professional photographers is as one way. What are some of the ones you’ve used in the past for our audience? You know, to kind of give a a few resources.

David (34:41):
Yeah, absolutely. So what I’ll say is this market is huge. There is a ton of professional photographers locally, nationally, they’re everywhere.

David (34:50):
And I would say since I’ve started my Amazon business, I’ve worked with probably 10 different photographers. So it’s a relatively small sample. However, I have done quite a bit of research on who has good reviews and and so here are two people in particular that I have used and really like one is www.productphotography.com they are expensive but they are good. And so just for some context as we record this podcast, a hero shot is 95 bucks per photo. Now if you’re planning on selling $50,000 a year of that product, that is money well spent. If you have 20 variations of 20 different colors, that is probably not money well spent. And so I have went to them and their deliverable is great. It comes in a bunch of different sizes, a PNG JPEG PDF and you know, one photo, we’ll have nine deliverables. So when you’re making your website or using the image in other places, it doesn’t become very pixilated when you change the size of it. But they do a lifestyle images and then they have an Amazon package, which again, as we record this episode that starts at around 500 bucks. And so they’re my number one go-to right now, but they are expensive.

David (36:11):
All right. So the number two professional photographer that I’ve used in the past is www.viral-launch.com And I was looking on their website. I don’t see a photography tab. Uh, so I’m not sure if they no longer offer those services. However, when I did get lifestyle photos from them, they were really good. And, uh, I actually bought their Amazon package and was really happy with what they delivered. Uh, we actually have an affiliate code for 15% off any service. www.Viral-launch.com Does a whole bunch of different things. Um, they, you know, can, what all do they do?

Ken (36:43):
They’re top notch company and in this space and I’ve used their, their photography services as well and it’s, it’s really high level. Uh, some of the other stuff, they have a PPC tool. Kinetic, they have a, they have a full Amazon seller software suite and their, their software suite is on par with like helium 10 jungle scout suites. So it’s kind of the top three. But yeah, they, they really specialize in uh, their product discovery tool and their, their newest one is the PPC kinetic I believe. Um, yeah, I, I recommend them.

David (37:15):
Nice. www.Firingtheman.com/resources for that 15% off code in the last thing that I’ll say in terms of professional photographers or finding a professional photographer, Upwork and Fiverr are both two websites that you can find product photographers on. Now if you have a specialized product, say you’re selling something for horses, it is best to find a photographer that also owns horses. And that may seem like a tough combination to find. I guarantee you that exists. And the reason I bring this up is that will save you money in the long run as opposed to hiring a photographer and them having to go and rent a horse. I have run into this type of situation on another type of product where it was much easier. It was in the pet product space. It was much easier for me to find a photographer with that type of pet and just have them photograph the product on that pet instead of having them go out and rent this particular pet.

Ken (38:23):
Yeah, for sure. So David, I just had to add one, one last tip on that. You know, if you want to use a local photographer, you know, just go to Google and type in your city and photographer or professional photographer, you know, Atlanta professional photographer, you’ll get a whole list of local photographers that you can reach out to and, and uh, you know, if you want to go that route.

David (38:47):
Yeah. And oftentimes they will post uh, their portfolio and so you can go in and see what type of quality you can expect. That’s one thing I really like about professional photographers is they like to showcase what they’ve done. And so it’s really nice to, you can kind of shop around and see, you know, Oh, this person’s really good at wedding photography, but I don’t see any product photos. And so, you know, you’re looking for a product photographer and that’s a specialty within photography.

Ken (39:17):
Yeah, no, that’s a great, yeah, great tip. So David, the best practices for dealing with professional photographers, what are some of those?

David (39:25):
Yeah, so I think most of these deal with on the front end of your order, and I would say that negotiate, if you have a lot of variations, a lot of times these photographers will say, you know, we will do all the photos for your Amazon listing for 500 bucks. Uh, however, if you have three different colors, this has been a, a spot where they already have the model set up, they already have the lifestyle image set up and it’s just a lot easier to take one or two extra photos of different colors. And so I think if you have variations, negotiate on price for lower price cause you know product photography, they didn’t wiggle on me when I tried to negotiate, you know it was going to, I had eight different colors and it was going to be somewhere around 2,400 bucks and uh, so maybe try that negotiation skills somewhere else. But anyway, not to dog on them, they do a great job. The second thing is ask for three hero images. And again, as I mentioned, split testing is really important and so having three hero images will allow you to toggle between those three and see what your audience likes the best.

David (40:38):
The third pro tip for dealing with professional photographers is make sure you have the full rights and ownership to all photos once it is completed. This may seem like a no brainer, however, there are some slimy photographers out there that will take the photos, but then you need to pay them an additional royalty anytime you use it. And if you’re paying for something, own it free and clear, royalty free and just clear that up on the front end. So you don’t have an issue on, on the back end with a ongoing royalty until the end of time.

Ken (41:10):
That sounds super shady. Yeah. That royalty sounds like Mr. Wonderful from shark tank. Yeah. He would want a royalty on every image for sure. Sorry.

David (41:21):
All right, so there is three pro tips for dealing with professional photographers. That wraps up today’s episode.

Ken (41:31):
Yeah, David, you did great job. We packed up a bunch of information, in this, this show, you know, and I hope that the audience can, uh, take a couple of things from the show and, and put it to use and, and uh, make some more money. Absolutely. Absolutely.

David (41:45):
Thank you everyone for tuning in to today’s firing the man podcast. If you liked this episode, head on over to www.firingtheman.com and check out our resource library for exclusive firing the man discounts on popular e-commerce subscription services that is www.firingtheman.com/resource. You can also find a comprehensive library of over 50 books that Ken and I have read in the last few years that have made a meaningful impact on our business for that head on over to www.firingtheman.com/library lastly, check us out on social media at firing the man in on YouTube at firing the man for exclusive content. This is David Schomer and Ken Wilson. We’re out!