10 Types of Commercial Photography Used by Small Businesses

types of commercial photography

As a photographer, you’re bound to come across a number of people who need different types of photography. Small businesses are, by themselves, a sizable market for photography. This is why it’s no surprise that in this niche you’ll come across many different types of photography. Small business owners understand the power and importance of a good photograph and so they’ll typically have a need for commercial photographers. Have a look below to see the 10 types of commercial photography that you’ll come across in the world of small businesses. If one appeals to you a lot, then you could investigate that niche further and start to look for those jobs specifically.

1. Brand Image Photography

The first one among the various types of commercial photography you’ll come across is brand image photography. A business brand plays a crucial role in the way in which a brand is viewed. This is why small businesses need a competent photographer to take brand image photographs that will leave a lasting impression on all who come across them. Brand image photography entails taking photographs that represent a business on the virtual level, so they call for a keen eye and the ability to capture details like colors and logos perfectly.

In the case of a photo shoot for a small business that deals with wedding venues, for example, you need to be able to make it clear what the business is about through photographs. While you do this, you must also set the business in question apart from similar businesses in the industry. This can be done by letting the theme and other details of the specific business show through the photographs you take. As a result, each set of brand image photos you take for different businesses should be unique.

2. Product Examples

Another one of the types of commercial photography that you’ll come across is product examples. This is a common type of photography in manufacturing and other industries that involve physical products. Customers need to know what they’re purchasing before they place an order. This is especially true for business-to-business transactions that involve bulk ordering. In order for a business to be able to sell its products effectively, it must showcase the products in the best possible light. This is where a commercial photographer comes in.

The best one should know the best angles, lighting, and staging for various products. They must be able to make the products that they photograph come alive and appear polished to individuals in their target market. Take custom tailored hats, for example, which may or may not be photographed while in use. These need to be photographed in a way that enables people looking at the photographs to appreciate their details and make an informed decision on purchasing the one that they want. No small business wants people to return their items because the items appear different in person than they did online or in print.

3. Examples of Past Work

Small businesses that deal with services rather than products will also need to showcase what they do in order to get more clients. This is therefore another one of the different types of commercial photography in existence. When taking these photographs, you’ll need to find a way to showcase work done in a manner that shines a spotlight on the abilities of the small business in question.

The construction industry is one of the industries where you’re likely to find many businesses that need to showcase their past work. Businesses such as custom home builders will need to show potential clients things that they’ve worked on in the past as proof of their experience. Some of these photos may be existing projects that have had some work done on them to improve them. Making sure to capture the details of what was done is crucial in this case.

4. Images for Customer Testimonials

Any good business must leave a trail of gratified customers in its wake. This is one of the things that new clients need to know before they commit to doing business with a new business. In this case, you’ll need to take images for customer testimonials that can show without a doubt that people who have dealt with the business in the past have ended up happy. This is one of the types of commercial photography that may call for minimal staging and setting up.

That’s because you simply need to capture happy customers, possibly alongside the product or service that they’re talking about. If the client has had a kitchen remodeling done, for example, you might have to take photographs of them in the said kitchen working on something. Note that in such a case, you may not be able to use all your equipment in the way that you’re used to. You’ll therefore have to be creative in order to get a good outcome.

types of commercial photography

5. Photos for Real Estate Platforms

Real estate platforms, including real estate schools, are another one of the businesses you’ll come across that need photography services. For this item in the list of types of commercial photography, it’s clear that you’ll typically be working with large subjects for the most part. You must therefore know how to take images that capture parts of buildings, whole buildings, and everything in between, such as rooms and other spaces. Some real estate professionals prioritize showcasing the best elements of properties, while others prioritize realism. Either approach can work well for everyone involved.

When taking photographs for real estate platforms, you’ll need to have experience working with natural lighting and in different scenarios, such as with people moving around in the background. Such skills will make it easier for you to take satisfactory photographs of real estate as you need to. You could go even more niche as you grow as a photographer, but for starters, you’ll have to be good with as many different settings as possible.

6. Documentation for Legal Contracts

Another one among the types of commercial photography that might be lesser known than the previous ones is documentation for legal contracts. This might be required the most by property management companies and similar businesses. This is because, when drafting a legally binding contract, every detail must be clear to avoid the risk of misrepresentation and other issues involving clarity.

To successfully take photographs for documenting legal contracts, you have to first understand perfectly what the company in question hopes to capture. This will help you to capture all the details that are needed to make the photographs sufficient. Taking the photographs you need to take well might call for you to understand the details of the contract to some degree, and this is something that the people for whom you’re taking the photos need to make clear. For this, good communication is an important skill, as is the ability to put things into context.

7. Documentation to Prevent Liability Concerns

While looking into different types of commercial photography, you can’t leave out documentation to prevent liability concerns. This is because, for a business that deals with liabilities and has a lot of risk when it comes to misrepresentation, a lot is at stake. Commercial facility fire protection is just one example of this. For the purposes of insurance and other details, you need to be able to show the state of facilities, equipment, and other details like these properly. In case something happens, it should be easy to see exactly how things were before the event.

To be able to take good photos for such situations, you’ll again need a keen eye for detail as well as strong communication skills. These can help you to take accurate photographs that leave no detail obscured. The photographs taken in this context might end up being used in legal proceedings, and this shows just how important the role that they play is. Find out what needs to be captured so that you can know the correct lighting and other details that will help you get a good outcome. For the best results, make sure to immediately upload your photos to the cloud.

8. Documentation for Insurance Companies

Another one of the important types of commercial photography is taking photographs for insurance companies for the purpose of documentation. These photographs are similar to those mentioned above, but in this case, they’ll typically be photos of after an event has occurred. These should clearly show the extent of damage or destruction in order to justify an insurance quote.

For these photos, you might find yourself being called to scenes of accidents or disasters. You may therefore need to be mobile, flexible, and able to work well under pressure and different conditions. For this, you may also need to have quality equipment that will be durable and withstand being used in various scenarios. Once you become a certified professional, you might get back-to-back bookings, especially in certain weather conditions that might lead to more accidents of a certain kind. From auto accidents to incidents in homes and business premises, you can expect to take photographs of a wide range of scenarios.

types of commercial photography

9. Before and After Pictures

Before and after pictures are yet another popular item when talking about types of commercial photography. These will typically be used to show the distinction between a person, space, or item before a certain action has been applied to it and after the said action has been taken. A good example of a situation in which this type of photography might be necessary is for cosmetic dentists. Since these professionals improve people’s smiles for a living, it’s important for them to be able to showcase the effect of their products or services on clients that they’ve worked on before.

Skin care products and weight-loss products are other examples of industries that might need commercial photography for before and after images. For this, it will be important to know how to leverage lighting and other conditions in order to accurately cover what you intend to depict. This way, consumers can see details of the differences that they’re supposed to be looking at without straining too much. It’s good to note that this type of photography may call for minimal staging but perfect lighting, so when looking for equipment to use, lights should be right behind a good camera.

10. Communication With Clients

Last but not least in this outline of types of commercial photography is photography for communication with clients. Small businesses will typically need this type of photography in order to communicate effectively with their clients. For instance, in a scenario where a client needs custom fabrication for a piece to be done, it’s important to get all the details of the project to be done. This can cut down on the back and forth and improve the chances of getting the job done right.

To get the best out of communication with clients, it’s a good idea to take photos that are as accurate as possible. To be able to do this, you’ll typically need good lighting and a clear environment that’s free of distractive items in the background. For this, you’ll need a good camera that’s capable of taking both long-range photographs and close-up images. The specifics will depend on the item being photographed as well as the context in which it’s being photographed. These photographs will also possibly need to be taken fast, which should be easy to do as there’s not much setting up involved with them anyway.

If you’re a commercial photographer, you can benefit immensely from learning about the different types of photography that exist. This information can guide you on the best career path for you as you’ll base it on your passions. The better you get at what you do, the more demand you’re going to be in. This is going to ensure that you never run out of clients who need your assistance. To thrive in your chosen niche, remember that you may need to get various specialized equipment and computer programs. These will all come together to help you sharpen your skills and offer quality service that’s going to be hard to replace.

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