When it comes to marketing your home builder business, the importance of photography can’t be overstated. As a home builder, one of the most important things for your clients is to be able to get a sense of how a new home feels, and the best way to do this is to let them see for themselves.
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- What is Good Photography?
- A Sense of Space
- What Are The Benefits?
- Grab Your Reader’s Attention
- Build Trust
- Establish an Identity
Home builders spend a fortune on building and maintaining showhomes for this very reason. If done properly, great imagery on your website will reach many more people in many more locations, and bring them into your showhomes. Without good photography, you could have an amazingly designed website and top-tier social media, but still be at a disadvantage against your competitors.
Let’s take a look at how you can use photography as a home builder to gain an edge in your marketing.
What is Good Photography?
A good place to start is by asking: what exactly is “good photography?” It’s often a fairly subjective term, but when it comes to marketing a home there are several pretty reliable methods you can use to evaluate how effective your photos are:
One of the best ways to make a showhome desirable is to make it look warm and inviting. Colour plays a crucial role here. While most modern cameras will white balance automatically to give a more neutral tone, an experienced photographer will be able to adjust this manually to create a warmer hue.
The “temperature” of colour is measured in Kelvin (K). Different light sources will give off light at different temperatures - for example, a regular household lightbulb will be around 3,500K, and sunlight will be around 5,500K.
If you’re photographing something lit with regular lightbulbs and you want your photo to appear neutral, you simply set the camera to shoot at 3500K. However, if you set it to shoot a regular lightbulb at 5500K, the image will move more into the orange, warmer tones. Conversely, if you were to set your camera to something like 2200K (or around the temperature of a candle), your photo would move more towards the bluer, cooler tones.
When photographing a home, you can use this to your advantage. Having your camera set to a slightly higher colour temperature than the lighting will produce a warm, orange tone that makes the home look cozy and inviting.
A Sense of Space
One of the most appealing features of new homes, especially higher-end ones, is the amount of space available. You can describe a home as having 2,500 square feet of space available, but people can’t always picture this.
This is another area where great photography comes in handy.
However, there’s more to it than simply setting up a camera in the open space and taking a picture. The way you shoot will have a big impact on how the space appears in the final shot as well.
A camera’s focal length directly affects the angle of view of the picture you’re taking. In layman’s terms, this simply means that the lower the focal length, the wider the picture will be and the more surrounding details you’ll see. While this isn’t so great for highlighting a specific feature, it is perfect for making a room seem huge and spacious!
The trade-off to this is that after a certain point the image will distort and you’ll start to get the “fish-eye” effect, so try to use a camera with no less than a 28-50mm lens to be on the safe side.
What Are The Benefits?
We’ve covered some of the ‘hows’ of home builder photography, but what about the ‘whys’? What are the specific benefits of using photography to help promote your business? There are probably too many to cover all at once in this post, but here are some of the highlights.
Grab Your Reader’s Attention
A striking image is one of the best ways to grab your reader’s attention. People are very visual creatures, and it can be hard to differentiate good from bad text at a glance. A strong, attention-grabbing image ensures that a reader is far more likely to read your material.
In fact, written posts with relevant images on average receive 94% more views compared to articles without images, and images on Facebook receive 352% more engagement than plain text links.
Images are also a great way to build trust with a potential customer. There’s a lot of misinformation around, especially online, so people can naturally be a little wary of things they read. Including images of the impressive features of your home models shows the reader you’re not exaggerating or misleading them, meaning they’re more likely to remember your brand as one that’s trustworthy in the future.
Even for a completely honest company, mistakes can still happen. Perhaps a reader misinterprets a written description or pictures something differently in their head, for example. Including images of your home’s features can greatly reduce the potential for misunderstandings or disappointed customers.
Establish an Identity
There’s no doubt about the importance of branding when it comes to marketing, and a foundation in high-quality, consistent photography can be a crucial part of establishing your company's visual identity. The key should be to create a unique and distinct visual style, ideally so that someone would be able to identify your company just from your images.
If you’re not thinking about the importance of good photography when marketing your home builder business, you could be missing out on a huge part of your brand’s appeal, identity and memorability. To see where it fits into your overall marketing plan, take a look at some of our other free resources and get the full picture.
Originally posted June 4, 2019; updated June 25, 2019