3 Steps to hiring the right product photographer for you.

You've done your research.

You know you need professional photos of your products.

But in an ocean of choices, who do you hire?

When you start to look for a product photographer do:

  • Feel daunted and overwhelmed?
  • Fell concerned about the unknown?
  • Don't know what to look for?
  • Worry about the cost or time it will take?

You can do this, it will be worth it!

I've broken it down into a 3 step process. The search for a product photographer can be easy and fun, well fun is a way of looking at life - but at least it won't be stressful!

Step 1 - Do You Like Their Work?

Their portfolio should be your first port of call. What to look for in a photography portfolio:

  • Does your potential photographer have experience with products?

    This is a biggy! There are many photographers out there who can take a stunning portrait, but shooting products is an entirely different skill.

    They may have experience, but keep product separate from their portrait work. Don't hesitate to contact them to see if they have examples of product shoot. The more examples, the better you can get a feel for their work.

  • Have they done the type of work you want?

    If you want a full fashion shoot with a model, hair & make up, props and a beautiful location, make sure your photographer has done that before.

    If you want product shots without models in a staged environment, like what I do, make sure they have experience. Each type comes with a whole host of unique skills and challenges.

  • Quality

    Is every image in their portfolio to the same quality standard, and is that standard high enough?

Step 2 - Do You Like Them?

If you like the look of a photographers work, check them out personally.

  • Have a read of their about page on their website.
  • If they have a blog, skim the titles to see what sorts of topics they write about.
  • Check out their social profiles. If they are active, you can learn a lot about the kind of person they are and what is important to them.
  • The gold standard - if you come across them in person or in a networking group, such as Network NZ. Then you can have a chat informally, or see how they have interacted on other posts.

What to look for on their social profiles and pages:

  • Are they friendly and helpful?
  • Do they respond to comments?
  • Is there any negative feedback or reviews? If there is, did they remedy the situation and create a happy client?
  • Does it look like your personalities will work well together?

Step 3 - Get in Touch

Contact them and ask a tonne of questions. If there is anything at all you aren't sure about, ask.

Good questions you can ask:

  • What's your turn around time?
  • How are the products getting back and forth?
  • How much will it cost and are there any hidden costs?
  • What type of files will you supply?
  • Will you show me a test shot before you proceed with the whole shoot?
  • What happens if I'm not happy with the photos?
  • What happens if I don't know what I want?
  • What do you require of me?
And anything else at all, no matter how simple or left field it may seem!

Bullet point or number your questions so none get missed.

What to look for in their reply

The speed of their reply and how they answer your questions will be telling about what you can expect from their service. Did they answer all of your questions?

If something doesn't feel right or their answers didn't work for you, don't hire them. It's OK to ask heaps of questions and send a polite reply telling them they aren't the photographer for you. You can even send follow up questions and still decide no. Like most things, trust your gut feeling, it knows.

Bonus tip: My photos have arrived!

When your photos arrive, check them over. Make sure you're totally happy with them. If you have any issues, bring them up as soon as possible to make remedying the issues faster and easier.

If you provided honest feedback throughout the process, and the photographer did their job right, you should be over the moon when they arrive.


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