Don't just tell - show


We often say that a picture is worth a thousand words, but how often do we actually use the right photos to convey key points? 

Most businesses have something they need to tell their visitors or need to stand out somehow. A single photo might do the trick. 

Have you thought about the key messages you're trying to convey and then made sure you're using photos that tell that story? 

Years ago I advised a hotelier, Dave, who ran a small hotel in an area that was notorious for dirty and run-down accommodation. His hotel was truly much better than the others in the area. He wrote on his website that he offered cleaner, better quality accommodation. But it's hard to get the message across when people have already got a negative picture in their head. 

So we did something really simple.

We bought Dave a new broom, a pink mop cap, and some long pink Marigold rubber gloves. We took photos of Dave cleaning the loo in his rubber gloves and mop cap. We took photos of him cleaning surfaces, washing his front door, scrubbing the steps... a whole range of places and poses, all with Dave in his eye-catching cleaning gear.

We made sure there was at least one of these photos on every page of the website and regularly posted on social media. Other people shared the photos. It quickly did the trick. The other accommodation in that area continued to struggle but Dave's hotel was constantly full. This activity cost practically nothing but got the message across really effectively. It also helped to convey Dave's welcoming, fun personality which drew many regular guests. 

Sometimes we need to convey concepts that are a bit wishy, washy.

We might use phrases like 'warm welcome' or 'quality service' but what do they really mean?

Most people just ignore those words when they see them. They're important, and yet often meaningless. 

So instead, how can you show that you offer a warm welcome or excellent service?

What small details and 'evidence' can you convey? 

Sometimes we miss the obvious and use words when images would work much better. 

For example, do you mention 'wonderful views' from your bedrooms? 

Or perhaps you talk about delicious food? 

Or the sense of satisfaction people get from learning something with you? 

What photos or videos could convey the story much more effectively? 


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