Reading
blue-triangle-element

Articles

PFRE is the original online resource for real estate and interior photographers. Since 2006, it has been a community hub where like-minded professionals from around the world gather to share information with a common goal of improving their work and advancing their business. With thousands of articles, covering hundreds of topics, PFRE offers the most robust collection of educational material in our field. The history of real estate photography has been documented within these pages.
All Articles
blue-triangle-element

Latest

The roster of presenters is full, and the PFRE Virtual Conference is officially on for November 20-21, 2020! We're excited to get technical this year and help you take your real estate photography business to the next level! Last year we sold out all o ...

COMMUNITY
blue-triangle-element

Forum

The PFRE Community Forum is an online resource for discussing the art and business of Real Estate and Interior Photography.
Join The Discussion
blue-triangle-element

Latest

View Now
Contest
blue-triangle-element

OVERVIEW

For over a decade, photographers from around the world have participated in PFRE’s monthly photography contests, culminating in the year-end crowning of PFRE’s Photographer of the Year. With a new theme each month and commentary offered by some of the finest real estate & interior photographers anywhere, these contests offer a fun, competitive environment with rich learning opportunities. 

Contest Rules
blue-triangle-element

CURRENT CONTESTS

View / Submit
blue-triangle-element

PAST CONTESTS

View Archive
Conference
blue-triangle-element

Conference

PFRE’s Annual Conference in Las Vegas provides real estate and interior photographers from around the world an opportunity to meet on an annual basis, to learn, share best practices and make connections. Many of the leading names in our field are selected to speak on topics aimed at improving our craft and advancing our business. It’s a comfortable, relaxed environment that is fun, easy to get to, and affordable.
blue-triangle-element

Upcoming

PFRE Conference 2020

Register Now
blue-triangle-element

Latest News

Limited Early Bird Spots on Sale Now! PFRE Virtual Conference 2020

The roster of presenters is full, and the PFRE Virtual Conference is o ...

PFRE Virtual Conference 2020 Announcement: Presenter Line Up Part 2 of 2

*Early bird tickets go on sale September 28th* Here are the remaining ...

PFRE Virtual Conference 2020 Announcement: Presenter Line Up Part 1 of 2

We're a few short months away from the PFRE Virtual Conference 2020 an ...

Reader Poll: Which Topics Should Be Covered at the 2020 PFRE Virtual Conference?

Planning is well underway for the 2020 PFRE Virtual Conference and we' ...

Podcast
blue-triangle-element

Podcasts

The PFRE podcast is focused on having meaningful conversations with world-class photographers, business professionals and industry leaders, with the goal to inform and inspire.
All Podcasts

Coming Soon...

Resources
blue-triangle-element

Resources

PFRE prides itself on the depth and breadth of the information and professional development resources it makes available to our community. Our goal is to help real estate and interior photographers be successful while bringing the community together and elevating the industry as a whole.
blue-triangle-element

Directory

Coming Soon...

Presentation of Photos is as Important as the Photos

Published: 06/04/2009
By: larry

This last week a Realtor ask me to look over his work that was presented on his web site. The photos were wonderful, but they were buried several clicks under a barrage of text and presented with a small, clumsy little slide show that I couldn't figure out how to control.

There's a lesson here for both Realtors and photographers wanting to promote themselves or their listings. Presentation of the photos is at least as important as photos themselves, maybe more important. My belief is if you are promoting photography then it should be "in your face"!

Art Wolfe's site a great example. Art is a great photographer and a great at marketing. While Art is not a real estate photographer the principles are still the same. Too many photographer sites use more words than necessary and have non-photographic intros before you get to the images. Here are some basic principles for promoting either listings or yourself on the web:

  1. Size matters: Bigger photos "talk" louder! I think gallery photos or listing photos should be at least 800x600 and bigger if possible.
  2. Don't make the viewer work to see the photos: Make the viewing automatic and easy to figure out. For listing photos, provide a way for the viewer to take control of photo selection. Viewers are typically in a hurry and don't want to sit through a long slide show they can't control. For a gallery control is less important but still a nice touch.
  3. Mixing portrait and landscape mode can be ugly: Tailor the aspect ratio of your photo for the medium or mechanism that will be use to present them if you can. Most slide shows look kind of clunky and awkward with mixed formats. Aaron Leitz has a nice solution in his galleries for mixing portrait and landscape photos. Realtors don't have control of real estate site presentation but real estate sites are all designed to handle landscape mode photos.
  4. The first or primary photo is the marketing "hook": Put your best shot so the viewer sees it first. This photo has to have the power to draw (hook) the viewer into looking a more photos. This is why, on a listing, the primary exterior photo needs to be the strongest image. Thomas Grubba's site is a great example of this principle. The front page image is really strong and grabs your attention and invites you to look more.

To reiterate a point I brought up in yesterdays post, enhancing the presentation of a listing's photos (or the photos from your shoot) is the single biggest reason to use a virtual tour or slide show. MLSs mangle photos and do a poor job of presentation. So if you have an enhanced presentation of the photos the listing will "stand out from the crowd".

8 comments on “Presentation of Photos is as Important as the Photos”

  1. I agree, but we have to bear in mind that many are using laptops these days and there's a major trend towards netbooks and mobile computing. Large images and Flash pose a problem in this area.

    I also get irritated at seeing images at 400kb= per image and rarely click through a whole image if I can see they are too big on the load times

  2. Phil-

    What notebooks are you using that cant handle flash properly? Even on my old P3 laptop flash ran with no problems and that laptop is probably 8 years old.

    Any laptop in the last 5 yers will run flash with no problems at all and if it cant then its unfortunately a problem with that specific laptop...not the flash.

    I think that the average person uses a cable or DSL connection these days and that a 400kb image is fine with pretty quick load times. The very min I would use would be 200kb but that is even probably too low quality for a large image.

    The real estate boards around my area (Toronto) even allow much larger image sizes, 500kb+ these days ....which kinda tells you the trend of the connections people are using (5 years ago the same boards were only allowing 200kb max)

  3. The only popular platform that can't display Flash is the iPhone. Adobe, I think, have done a Flash implementation for the iPhone but Apple chooses not to use it due to "techno-religious" issues.

    I wish Apple would fix this problem but at this point I'm not ready to give up my Flash slide shows on my site just for iPhone users (of which I'm one). If iPhone usage continues to grow and continues Apple continues to refuse Flash I may have to reconsider.

  4. Chris
    I was referring to the screen size of netbooks, often 800x600 in total and even the most popular normal screen res of 1024 x 768 would miss off the thumbnails below unless you scroll, so something for photographers to bear in mind.
    Flash is as an issue on portable devices like the iphone, etc. If I was looking through lots of properties, load times would be important for me. I think the medium size Lightroom gallery of 780 pixels at 70% quality is a good compromise and resizes for smaller screens, but for a lot of properties I'd probably use javascript.

  5. I also agree 100%. Although I am relatively new to the real estate photography business, I use a photo gallery that has an automatic forward to a non flash page if it senses that the viewer's computer or iphone doesn't have flash. The feedback on that is great.
    Size matters when it comes to the mls photos and every realtor that I work for would agree.

  6. I couldn't agree with you more! Packaging matters - more than people realize. These philosophies - photo size, viewer tech., presentation design - are supremely important in making a positive lasting impression.

    The most challenging aspect is the balance of providing compelling effect while supporting the widest audience. This target wouldn’t be quite so difficult if it weren’t always in motion.

    It's also very hard to be disciplined enough to minimize the clutter of ancillary functionality. A well designed presentation stays out of the way of the photos. After all, that’s what the people want. Give it to them.

  7. Herb- Thanks for your comments. I think you guys do a great job of presentation in your premium tours.

    For those that haven't seen the tourfactory.com premium tours this is what they look like:

    http://tours.tourfactory.com/tours/tour.asp?t=468861

    This has got to be a model of how to do it. Big photos that dominate the presentation yet tons of details for those who want it that stay out of the way in fly-out menus along the left site, plus Ken Burns panning. The most remarkable aspect is that this kind of tour is called a "video" tour by 90% of the world!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

magnifiercrossmenucross-circle