Sue Vaughton Photography

The Measured Value of Photography

A picture is worth a thousand words, an adage you’ll have heard many times before. These days pictures are worth at least a thousand words – probably more!

High-quality, finely-crafted photographs will maximise your holiday home’s appeal to potential guests without question. In this day and age, all consumers, whatever they buy, are spoilt for choice. When it comes to successfully marketing and promoting your holiday home online, not only are high-quality professional photographs an absolute must but the way in which you style and present your holiday home is just as important.

Today’s marketplace

Both killer interior photography and savvy interior design have quite literally become two of the most essential requirements to get ahead in today’s holiday home market. Quality imagery and home style are what stand between you and your neighbour, so to speak!

Without these key ingredients, ask yourself, “how will my future guests choose between my holiday rental and scores of others in my local area”? That’s why it’s so important to showcase an alluring holiday home lifestyle that can first and foremost, be enthusiastically enjoyed from the inside, irrespective of the weather and the map destination that the guest chose when booking.

Converting lookers to bookers!

There are already lots of statistics out there to support the evidence that photography is one of the strongest and most versatile assets and sales tools for your investment – if it’s done well!  And how your property is photographed has a very noticeable impact on the booking numbers received throughout the year?

This also supports the evidence that you will have just 20 seconds for your photo gallery to make an impression before viewers lose interest and move onto a competing property.

Thrilled & excited, your new professional photographs have arrived, what now?

Your fabulous photographs have arrived and you instinctively and hastily make a move to upload them (in the date & time order in which they were taken & appear in the folder) to your website and to all your other listing portals, but hold-up! 

I encourage you to think for a moment and take your time to consider the most appealing & logical image sequence in which to present the flow of your home to your potential guest. 

If your property doesn’t happen to have spectacular water views, then it’s apparent when looking at advertising portals that in-the-main, the majority of folk don’t seem to be able to break the age-old habit of featuring the front-façade of their home first (if it’s detached) as their lead-thumbnail! But ask yourself, is this the most appealing photo in my gallery? 

Instead, think smarter and choose the most colourful and attractive feature-photo of your place, e.g. your large vaulted kitchen/diner, or your magnificently decorated living room & decked veranda; these would be the shots to choose if either of these is your most distinctive and inviting areas. If you’re not convinced, then just experiment and try instead, a colourful, enticing lifestyle lead-picture that could make the world of difference and enable you to stand-proud within a crowded listing page!

Be logical

For arranging the full gallery beyond your thumbnail, it’s best to choose the most attractive & interesting areas of your home first but remember to still keep a logical order of flow where possible. Remember, folks not only get bored of text-mass, but they also get bored of photographs if the first 5 haven’t peaked their holiday-lifestyle-vibe in the immediate several-second-scroll. 

It’s also more persuasive to feature transition photos within your image set too. Pictures that showcase the interaction between two or more spaces also enhance room-flow. It goes without saying, however, that the number of transition shots you need varies depending on your layout. Ask your photographer if they could shoot a number of transitional viewpoints through doorways or connecting open spaces and to include the indoor-to-outdoor connections too where possible.

Another trick to arranging your photographs is to imagine how you would conduct a viewing around your home and potentially how would you describe your favourite parts of the house? It’s always a good exercise to go through the motions and write things down as you go from room to room to outside? 

Sometimes the kitchen is designed near to the entrance and leads through to the living room, but maybe your living room is more appealing than your kitchen, then ask yourself visually what comes first? Perhaps your living room has stunning French window views, in which case lead the viewer with a photograph out to the terrace and to the views beyond before continuing the visual inside tour. 

Try and lead your viewer on a journey of discovery that makes sense and keep things interesting by interspersing relevant indoor-outdoor connections where possible — this is a great technique to break up room-to-room monotony and show context within the scene. 

If a downstairs bedroom & bathroom feature on the ground floor, then include that in the downstairs image-flow before following on with a staircase hallway shot then leading the viewer to the upper floor. 

Having a floor plan within your listing is pretty important too and is very useful for the viewer to tie your gallery flow together with the floor-plan in order to pre-visualise your thoughtful, artful, journey through your home.

Colour & shapes

Believe it or not, one can even achieve enhanced transitions and flow between two or three photographs by cross-matching colour tones and even matching similar shapes between one photo and the next, therefore matching them geometrically or tonally in a more fluid way with the neighbouring photo, e.g. lookout for a shared common colour, a complementary colour even, a neutral palette perhaps or a common shape in each of the photographs that sit together side by side.

One last thing

Don’t forget to include a few quality location-destination photographs to your gallery too. Ideally professional ones but if your photographer couldn’t do any on the day for you then only downloaded the very highest-quality examples from your mobile phone. 

Quality, consistency and a non-repetitive portfolio of photographs arranged in a smooth transitional flow is, without doubt, a very effective & impactful method to present your holiday home gallery.

If you have questions, please get in touch for any advice or further information.

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