When is “good enough,” good enough? Hell of a question to ask a perfectionist. But the real answer is actually easy. Good Enough is never good enough.
Seriously though, many businesses think that imagery, video or stills, can be done for less that it traditionally has been done. Because of this many marketing directors and art directors are forced to settle for smaller budgets. They try to make do with less. Less is not more in photography. Less is just, well, less.
Your product or service isn’t just good enough is it? Isn’t your advertising supposed to show your best side, show how you stand above your competition? Let’s look at a few examples. We will get to my images later but first go to Google.com and type in “sneakers” and click the first link that pops up. Top of the list, #1 ranking. Go ahead. I’ll wait. That was fast. Not a bad site, rotating images of, well, sneakers. Now go to Nike.com. I’ll wait. No problem I have time.
When you’re done, I’ll be here.
Wow! Once you get past the language and country, now that is a photograph! Time was spent conceptualizing and capturing that image. And you have to click to move to the next image. But you want to. You want to see what is the next shot, what do those sneakers look like. They got you. They have you looking and reading and you are curious. Isn’t that putting your best foot forward? (pun intended)
Seriously, the idea of marketing is to set yourself above and beyond your competition. So how is “good enough” setting you apart? If you are just doing something as good as the other guy, why do I want to use you instead of them? What makes you special? Nothing. So I am sticking with them and you just wasted your marketing dollar.
The fact is that by not doing the best you can, you actually waste more money that you think. First you are wasting it on an image that isn’t putting you in front of the pack. That dollar you did spend is possibly killing your entire marketing campaign! You saved a few hundred or a few thousand by hiring your brother-in-law’s kid who has a decent camera, but no training or skills, and you got a shot that is good enough.
Now you put your marketing campaign out there and it doesn’t bring you any new business. What if you get images that are really just average or even above average snapshots, you may even lose a few points of your market share. After all, your version of a Nike type competitor did spend a little more and hired the same pro that did the Nike website images. Now he has your customers. You lost even more. These images are getting expensive.
You have spent money on your nephew, you spent money on the marketing materials and ads. Maybe you have a marketing department. Well those people don’t work for free. You spent thousands, maybe tens of thousands on a marketing campaign and put in good enough images and now it cost you more than if you did nothing! You lost all those customers to save a few bucks!
OK let’s say you’re not a business man. You’re just the average Joe working for a living. Maybe good enough is good for you. Probably not. In fact, for you it’s even a bigger hit. Imagine if you hired Uncle Louie to shoot your wedding because you wanted to save a little bit more for the honeymoon. Your images came back flat, lifeless and half the people had their heads cut off in the middle of their foreheads. Your married now and she isn’t happy about those images. The wedding album is on her side of the bed. You’re not.
OK you sprung for the pro photographer at the wedding but you didn’t want to get the baby pictures done by the professional. Guess what. Kids grow up and they do it fast. Before you know it you’re paying for college tuition rather than diapers. Those first few years aren’t coming back either. You missed the best shots of their lives.
So when is good enough, good enough? Never.
What about those images of mine I said would come later? Check out the portfolio here: https://michaelalbany.com/portfolio/ and tell me. Did these people settle for good enough?
Why are you?
Until next time…