One of the basic tenants of sales is that people have to know what you have to sell if they’re going to want to buy. It’s so basic that people often forget that knowledge is part of the equation. Particularly when selling something like a decorated garment, a picture can often be worth a thousand words. The question is where do you put those pictures so your customers see them, and how do you use those pictures to impart a sense of your expertise and what you can do for those who choose to work with you?
One way to get the message out about what you can do is Pinterest. As I’ve said before, Pinterest is about aspiration and getting ideas for items that you want to make or buy. Having Pinterest boards for your company (these are EnMart’s boards) allows you to showcase different aspects of what you can do. You can create boards around a certain event or theme, or make boards that feature a particular product decorated in different ways. If you have Pinterest boards, make sure they’re featured on your website and social media feeds, and refer your customers to them in your printed literature.
Another way to help spread the word about what you can do is to share pictures of what you make with your suppliers. Or you can use a supplier hashtag (#IrisThread, for instance) to alert your suppliers to a picture that might interest them. I know, here at EnMart, we love getting pictures of products that were made with supplies purchased from us. We also share those pictures on our Facebook feed (22,000+ fans) and our Twitter feed. Granted not all the people who like any of your suppliers are going to be in your potential market spheres, but some of them might. Plus, having your work shared by your suppliers gives you a bit of decorator credibility. Your work is good enough that it’s being presented as an example of what can be done.
As a writer for industry magazines, I know I’m always looking for photos to illustrate the pieces I write, so this can be another fertile ground for pictures of the items you create. Most of the time, when an article writer needs pics for a piece, they will put out a call on social media, asking for pictures of work that centers on a particular discipline, type of garment or theme. If you are planning to submit a photo for publication, remember it needs to be at least 1 MB, and 300 DPI. Magazines can work with less, but the odds of your picture getting used are better if you stick to those guidelines.
One last bit of advice, which goes for any photo you use anywhere. Make sure your photos are the best quality they can be. Yes, you can take a good photo with the cameras on most phones these days, but it still might be worth investing in a camera, especially if you’re offering your products for sale online. Pictures are often the first impression a customer forms of your products, so make sure you are, visually, putting your best foot forward. Taking quality pictures may be more time consuming and perhaps more costly, but the benefits will far outweigh the drawbacks.