An image alone can sell a product… Whether it’s an item that catches your attention in a magazine, on television or online, engaging imagery can stop us in our tracks. You might not think you’ve fallen into the marketing trap before, but rest assured, you have! How many times have you watched a food TV advert and then inadvertently decided that’s just what you fancy having to eat. In my opinion, Marks and Spencer food adverts are the best! Coupled with iconic audio and a sensual voiceover, food has become sexy! And steak lovers must have noticed the latest ‘Food Love Stories’ Tesco advert, with a voiceover by Sarah Millican? Capturing the attention of your audience with engaging imagery is just the beginning of the sales journey, but get the photography wrong and you’re simply on a loosing battle before you start! Where to start? You might know a photographer, maybe they’re a friend or relative? They might take ‘nice’ photos but too many people nowadays claim to do just that and you are going to get what you pay for! Simply holding a camera in their hands and snapping away does not constitute a good photographer. In fact, a photographer ‘snap happy’ is probably banking on hoping a couple of them will be okay to use! You will know if you’ve employed a good photographer or not as they should take the time to carefully light the person, product, roomset or image to be shot and where necessary suggest the use of a stylist. What does a stylist actually do? There are many specialist photographic stylists and usually their forte is specific to their training. A food stylist is totally different to an interiors stylist in so much as they are likely to be able to prepare and cook the food as well as present it for the photo. Knowing how to keep bubbles in fizzy drinks and hot food steaming is all part of their job, along with sourcing crockery and cutlery for the shoot. In much the same way, an interiors stylist will take a brief from the client. The brief can be to design an entire roomset or to style an object or collection of products. Sometimes the overall room design will need to be undertaken and sometimes the client chooses to give the stylist the overall plan of the roomset. Understanding the target clientele is paramount when it comes to styling. Props should be sourced from similarly perceived, target market companies for the shoot. Choosing flooring, window treatments, wallpaper and paint for an interiors shoot is all part of the job, and more importantly, ensuring the product is on site during set build is paramount. There is no point in employing a photographer to shoot if a roomset isn’t ready and you will ultimately end up with added expense. Sourcing the products for the overall scheme is only part of the role of a stylist. The stylist is responsible for cleaning the roomset prior to propping in, so along with choosing products for wallcoverings, smaller ‘props’ to make the roomset feel more lived in and real also need to be sourced. Budget plates and glasses won’t cut the mustard in an upmarket kitchen shoot, and in the same way, the produce must be considered. It simply won’t do to fill a fruit bowl with oranges! All of this sourcing takes time to prepare for. Sometimes the client can be too close to the product or indeed impart their own personal taste into a roomset. Employing the services of a stylist takes this pressure away. Get in touch to find out how Serendipity Happens can help you to achieve great eye-catching imagery, giving you maximum exposure through all your marketing channels.