Use Photographs In Your Marketing Strategy | Cups To Gallons
photos for marketing strategy

Use Photographs In Your Marketing Strategy

Are you a small business owner looking for a marketing strategy that will help you build ongoing relationships with your customers, clients, and patients?

Would your brick and mortar location like to know about a marketing strategy that’s easy to implement and brings big rewards?

If your business has face-to-face contact with prospects and customers, you want a marketing strategy that’s bold and unique . . . a marketing strategy that will help you stand out from the masses.

Otherwise, you don’t really have customers, clients, and patients . . . . you really have “transactions” . . . . people who go in the door and out the door.



You want – and need – a marketing strategy that will help you create special (and profitable) connections with your customers, clients and patients.

One fun and easy way to build on your relationship with customers AND help prospects understand what you’re all about is to show off your customers with three very specific types of photographs ANY business owner can easily capture.

Trust me, if you follow this advice, these photographs will become valuable marketing assets you’ll use over and over again.

PHOTO STRATEGY #1: Take Photos With Customers Enjoying The Benefits Of Your Product or Service

Visuals greatly impact buyer behavior – there’s no doubt about it.

But not just any visuals.

If the only images your prospects and customers see in relation to your business look like they were taken in a studio with paid models, they might not be as likely to make a purchase.


Because customers want to see real people using your products.

According to Nielsen’s Global Trust in Advertising Report, 83 percent of consumers value peer recommendations and reviews above professional content.

And when customers see you sharing their photos, they’ll be inspired to take their own photos related to your brand and share them with their following. Your business can then use that user-generated content to increase engagement both on social media and on your website.

This marketing strategy is so easy to do everybody reading this can start immediately. Essentially you want to setup a system to proactively take photos with happy customers either in your location, at events, etc.

In my coffee & smoothie business, when we go out and do a catering job, we ALWAYS take a picture of the host/hostess in front of the tiki bar (or TikiTruck) and email a copy of it immediately afterwards along with a handwritten thank you not as a followup step.

photos as marketing strategy

If you have a physical store, office or location, why not set up a “photo area” where you do your best to capture 100% of your customers during their visit? Make sure you or a key staff member is in the photo too!

You can take these photos inside your location or in front of your location, etc. For example:

  • A martial arts studio owner can have an area where he takes photos of students when they graduate to the next belt
  • An orthodontist can have an area where she takes a photo with patients who just got their braces removed
  • A retail store owner can have a “happy customer photo area” in their store

You can then take these photos and create:

  • A “fan book”
  • Put them up on a customer “Wall of Fame”
  • Create a special photo area on your web site
  • Send them to the customers in a personalized thank you note, etc.

After each catering event we post a picture of it on our social media sites and tag the person/company. We also post the picture on their site and thank them for the opportunity to “deliver the Aloha Spirit and treat everyone to a vacation in a cup”. This works great because it engages them and they then share it with their community.

photos for marketing strategy

How can you use photos as a marketing strategy to showcase your products and services? Take photos at the time of delivery of a product or at the completion of a service you provided, etc. I can see a landscaper taking a photo with happy home owners after completing a landscape project.

The important thing to remember is that you and the customer are in the photo and you’re not just taking photos of the completed project, etc.

People love to look at pictures of other people and you want to make sure you add this personal touch.

PHOTO STRATEGY #2: Customer Selfies

For the most part, I find “selfies” annoying and a disturbing societal trend, however since just about everybody has a smart phone you should be able to easily get these.

On the other hand, the “customer selfie” is the perfect way to capture a fun photo of customers when you don’t have a face-to-face photo opportunity. The idea is to ask customers to send you a photo of them using your product/service or enjoying the benefit of your product/service. Creating a fun contest around this is a smart strategy!

I have a client that rewards customers for posting pictures of the products they buy on social media. They can either email the picture or tag my client on social and they get $10 towards their next purchase. It works great because those pictures get a lot of engagement and get shared on social, spreading my client’s brand even further.

selfies as marketing strategy


With all of these strategies, you can create a hashtag, which will make it easy to track content and bring your fans together around a common purpose or interest.

To get the most out of your hashtag, make it unique and easy to remember. If you’re not sure if your hashtag is unique, search Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram to see if it’s already being used. Consider adding the year (#smmw14), an abbreviation (#fmsphotoaday) or combining two words (#everydaystyle).

The beauty of hashtags is that you can use more than one in an update. Combining hashtags exposes your updates to the fans of related content.

What are you doing to include photos as part of your marketing strategy?



About Stacey Riska

Stacey Riska, aka “Small Business Stacey” is a serial entrepreneur who is passionate about saving small business and rebuilding Main Street. She helps small and local business owners become a #SmallBizMarketingWiz by teaching them marketing strategies that get MORE: MORE leads, MORE customers/clients, MORE sales, and MORE money. Stacey is the founder of Small Biz Marketing Specialist, THE go-to place for marketing tips, techniques and strategies that get results. Stacey is also the creator of the Daily Deals for Massive Profits Training Program, an online video training program that teaches small and local business owners how to use daily deal sites like Groupon to skyrocket their business growth and get massive profits. In this program she teaches from experience, as it was the key strategy that transformed her coffee and smoothie business from being $500K in debt to a 7-figure profitable business. When not saving the small business world, she enjoys sipping red wine, eating chocolate (who doesn’t!) and spending time with her amazing husband.




About the Author Stacey and Dave Riska

Stacey and Dave Riska, aka "The Cups To Gallons Champions" are on a mission to help independent coffee, smoothie, juice bar, ice cream, dessert and snack shop owners learn how to get into lucrative catering. They transformed their coffee/smoothie business from $500K in debt to a 7-figure profitable business (yes you read that right!) by doing catering. They're the author of "Cups To Gallons where they share the 5-step CATER system that can give you $800 a day (or more!) in profits. Join Stacey, Dave and your fellow small business owners in the FREE Facebook Cups To Gallons Group

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