A comprehensive guide covering Whippy's best photography practices that help practices grow and succeed. Designed for Whippy Photographers and Clients.
We at Whippy feel that we have perfected a good number of things for local businesses, but the one we hold most important has been photography we perform for businesses. Executing great photography seems to always create a huge difference and pays off for our clients.
This guide will be a checklist for our photographers & practice owners in the Whippy community, so if you’re none of the above consider yourself lucky (you’ll get some insider tips 😉).
We broke down how much photography truly matters in a previous blog, so we won’t go over that here. But the bottom line is this: real photography makes ALL the difference for small businesses. Your potential clients or patients care (even if it is subconsciously), so you should too.
Whippy has worked with photographers all around the country that have helped us develop some expert tips. This blog (maybe more like a guide, let’s be real) will dive into the depths of how to execute the perfect photoshoot — specifically what shots to include— in order to maximize its effect on your business.
Your goal when executing photography should be to allow potential patients to develop an innate sense of trust with your business without even seeing it in person. This is a huge element of why we suggest exterior & interior photography. There’s just something about allowing patients to familiarize themselves with your practice before booking that simply works.
We suggest at least 10 exterior and interior shots that can be used not only for the website’s gallery & contact us page, but more importantly for Google My Business. Google My Business is such an undervalued key to your practice’s success, and we could go on about it forever. So if you haven't read it already, definitely check out our guide to dominating Google My Business.
Having 10 shots Geo-Tagged on Google My Business is a huge advantage for Google Maps Traffic— meaning more potential patients and clients will find you. The shots don’t even need to be edited, the raw image generally does the trick. Here are some great examples:
Headshots are one of the more important aspects of your photography, so make sure you get this one done and done right. Headshots make great additions to your website’s “team & bio page” — or whatever section of your website you introduce your staff in.
But, they can also do so much more. Headshots make the perfect Instagram posts, Facebook Ads, highlights, etc.
The idea behind headshots works through understanding how our brain works. We naturally seek to form connections and trust with those around us, so providing imagery of your staff to potential patients makes inquiring patients much more likely to choose you.
We usually recommend anywhere between 2 - 8 staff members to be featured in photography. These staff members should be the most consistent & critical members.
Headshots are best taken horizontally since this gives you the versatility of keeping them horizontal or cropping them down if need be. When taking the headshots, make sure to keep consistency in mind. Nothing looks more professional than the entire main staff taken with the same background.
Team shots are your chance to show-off the collaborative, fun environment of your practice. Remember the old saying “team work makes the dream work”? Well we’ve found this to hold very true for practice photography.
Team shots can be used on your “about us” page, SEO landing pages, lead conversion pages, FB banners, social media, and everywhere else. For these shots, choose the environment carefully. Some of the practices we shoot for have enough space for the photos to be taken indoors—which is optimal—, but some don’t.
If you need to perform your team shots outside, be careful with lighting and surroundings. The key here is to make sure the sun doesn’t shadow faces and that the background doesn’t distract from the focus (your beautiful team).
Similar to the headshots, team photos should also be taken horizontally. We even edit some of our client’s images to be more horizontally cropped after the shoot so that they can be used as a “skinny” banner image for website landing pages.
Further, be sure to prepare your team. It looks best if everyone is dressed consistently. These photos will eventually be used on your website so make sure to consider your site’s colors/theme. You want your photos to match well with this. For example, if your website is themed blue, and one of your staff members boasts a bright orange top for the photoshoot, things will look off.
One of the best team shots is what we call “the walking shot”. In these photos, the main doctor or owner is at the top and the team forms a triangle and walks together—almost like a wedding photo!
The excellent patient experience your practice offers should be prevalent amongst all of your practice’s media outlets. Capturing these moments on camera can show potential patients how much you value customer experience and that your practice offers a safe, effective, and trustworthy environment.
These types of images will surely make you stand out as you will likely be the only practitioner in your area that has gone to this level. You’ll surely leave competition who still use stock photos (yuck) in the dust!
We recommend taking your patient through their normal flow and take a couple snaps at each. Make sure to also cover some of your most frequent services/procedures and end it with a dr/patient happy smiles photo.
Use “model” patients (they don’t actually have to be models). Model patients enhance the photography’s professional appearance immensely and take away the awkwardness of asking actual patients to be photographed.
Oh boy do we hear it all the time now.. Mask or No Mask? In general for headshots & team shots we don’t recommend masks as there are about showing people who you are. For the patient/client flow shots, however, we suggest some of each. Masked photos in patient/client shots are a fantastic way of showing people that their health and safety is your top priority during Covid-19.
If you have some extra time, including some fun/candid shots into your photoshoot can be an excellent choice. Getting more patients truly comes down to standing out amongst the competition, and adding some personality or quirks to your media achieves this well.
Fun/Candid shots are great for social media or advertisements as they truly catch the attention of your audience. People value genuineness, so let your personality shine through! Here are some examples of great shots we have done in the past:
In general most photos should be horizontal since this allows the most versatility when cropping the images for your web layout.
Photos should always be in RAW format not JPEG.
The average shoot lasts about 2 - 2.5 hours.
Have everyone dressed and ready. It’s always good protocall to show the photographer an office tour upon arrival. Once the photographer has found the ideal location for headshots, have the team ready to swap in and out.
We highly suggest securing a “patient” model for the photoshoot as the patient flow shots are very important. Make sure that the model is there and ready to go by the time the photographer arrives.
Depending on when your model and staff are ready ,you should work at the patient flow and team/individual headshots first since they involve people other than the owners of the practice (and are getting paid to be there). The exterior & interior can be first or last depending on when you do these other prioritized shots.
The photographer sends us (Team Whippy) all the raw files and we soon get them a list of “final photos” that need to be touched up.
30 is usually how many the photographer will touch up.
Final Photos should be reduced to ~500KB as to not slow site speed down.
If you are a local photographer who is interested in local business shoots and wants to be part of our team, or a practice looking to dominate your local market online, reach out to us at Whippy. We love helping good people.
All photography in this blog was taken by the amazingly talented Natalie Baidi of Los Angeles, Ca. Check her out on IG @natalie.baidi.photography