Sunday, March 31, 2013

No Photos In Your Shop Means No Free Publicity

Interesting day at the Hunter Valley over the weekend. Great to see the shops busy with customers and the weather obliging us with clear a and sunny day.

My visitor was up from Sydney so I thought a trip to the vineyards would be a good way to show off the local area and let her see some places she'd never been before.

Since we are both involved heavily in social media we were interested to see how the different businesses are   approaching their promotion online and especially the sharing of attractive photos of the local establishments and surroundings, with friends on Facebook and Twitter and the like.

As were were snapping photos like so many others to share with friends, one store owner was obviously deeply concerned should someone take a photograph of their window display. Now I  have seen this attitude before and one level I can understand that it may seem to be a prudent thing to want to protect one's image... except that the benefits of promoting your best features is really what marketing is all about. This preciousness about keeping one's stock or concept in business 'secret' seems to belong to another era.

On the positive side, another business was only too happy to okay a photo and supplied a big smile to go with it along with at great sample of the chocolate port - just the thing to partner with a rich dessert.
That photo of course will be posted to their Facebook page with a nice comment, and may be shared with any number of other people from that point out. This can lead to really big numbers of people who see the photo, know there is a store with friendly service that is comfortable with new media and more people than even who will be aware that they exist now.

If you're making designer apparel it's probably something you want to keep private at least until it is in the stores but generally speaking, there is a better than even chance that photos of your business showing off your good work at setting up your attractive displays, is something to encourage people to share.

Do you allow photos in your business? Please add a comment if you do, or if you don't and a little about why  that's your policy.

Update: Here's an article from way back in 2007 that speaks to this issue - worth a read. "As Seth Godin says, “In an experience economy, where a bear workshop or furniture superstore is a form of tourism, photography is part of the deal.”
Seth smartly points out a paradox of pictures exists with retailers that deliver remarkable in-store experiences. Retailers want you to remark about your shopping experiences but not with actual pictures, only with words written and/or spoken."


Still on matters around photography, here is an article on Snapchat - billed as the solution to uninvited sharing of sexting photos. It may not be the solution some hope. 

Snapchat, a photo-sharing app, has seen massive growth since launching last year in September.We are convinced that that runaway growth has a lot to do with features that make it ideal for sexting, or sharing risqué photos of yourself with friends.
Or “friends,” we should say, who might suddenly turn around and share those photos with others or post them online.

Related posts:
Many hands make lighter work of social media for local businesses
Here's how to save time and get good content for your business online
Inbound marketing the new old fashioned way to do business
Financial planners: Social Marketing the key to keeping business on the books
Business writing not just on the social media wall
What every business should know about social media


  1. Great post Lindy. One has to seriously wonder why many business still choose to sabotage opportunities such this and not embrace online "word of mouth" marketing. Thank you for showing me around the Hunter Valley! :)

  2. Thanks Alexandra. I can only guess there is some fear and notion that not allowing photos gives them some kind of control. I wonder what they will make of Google Glass...