Say Cheese(y)

March 11, 2013

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Tell me if this is a familiar story…

You visit two sites. One is, for the sake of argument, a business that sells widgets. The other is a charity that supports connecting kids in need with mentors. These are completely different types of sites with divergent interests and goals. So how come when you land on the home page of both sites you’re staring at the same guy in a suit and tie smiling and extending his hand?

Welcome to the dangerous world of stock photography.

There’s no doubt stock photography has its place (it’s not always easy, for instance, to nip off to the North Pole to get a picture of a glacier if you need one for some reason). But the simple fact of the matter is that nine times out of ten, you can make a far more compelling case for your organization if you can provide your own photography for the website — your facility, your staff, your volunteers.

Look at it this way, if you’re a charitable organization chances are you’re surrounded every day by staff members and service users who not only would love to help, but could tell the story of your organization 100 times better than any stock photograph could. Even if it’s not the best photograph in the world, it’s still a far more personal approach than picking some clichéd, over-Photoshopped image from (insert name of stock photography site of choice here).

Besides, if people are thinking of investing their time and energy in your cause, they really want to know about you and all the wacky/passionate/sincere/committed people you interact with on a daily basis. It may seem like another little thing, but it’s a little thing that can make the difference between people knowing who your are and simply who you buy photographs from.

If you know of a registered charity’s website that needs to get off the stock photography treadmill, Click Here to Lend a Hand!

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