The digital landscape of car dealerships has changed massively in the past ten years. Your car showroom is now online, laptops, phones and tablets are now the first port of call for the new & used car buyer.
The online marketplace is becoming increasingly competitive as car dealers are constantly upping their game to stand out from the competition and the standard of car imagery has suddenly gone through the roof. As a car dealer you now have to also take on the role of ‘car photographer’ and put out consistently slick and professional imagery because, let’s face it, if your image is shoddy they’ll be scrolling right on by.
Doing it yourself
So you have allocated the time resources and energy to shoot your own car imagery, here’s some tips to get the most out of your time.
Location, Location, Location:
Choose your location wisely. Most importantly the location of all car photos should remain the same. This ensures your cars look uniform and professional when browsing online. Shoot against a large clean wall or some kind of generic scene that won’t change week to week and doesn’t have any distractions in the background. Remember cars are like giant mirrors so any reflections of passers by or other cars will be picked up.
Camera, Tripod, Ladder…Check
Invest in a decent camera that can be designated for the job ensuring photos are of high quality and look the same (switching cameras every time will produce different quality images). A tripod set up in the same place every-time means all cars and angles can be shot at the same height & distance. A ladder will allow you mix it up sometimes and get some interesting angles when the car calls for it!
Photograph the same set of angles for every car, ideally you should move the car not the camera so that the background is the same whether shooting the front or the back. Any key features in the interior should also be shown off. Here’s a few examples that will give the customer a nice journey as they flick through your images.
These images were taken at Kevin Egan Cars using a purpose built turn table. Expensive but the results speak for themeselves.
As much as it saves time to upload straight from your camera if you can run the photos through an editor and apply the same settings or filter every time it will really add that wow factor and keep photos looking consistent whatever the weather.
This free online tool allows you to quickly adjust the exposure or make the colours appear more accurate. You can even overlay your logo if you want to get really fancy!
For more info on editing images check out our blog A quick way to resize and crop imagery without buying photoshop.
Calling in the Professionals
Car photography is time consuming when done right. There are always guys out there to lend a hand and ease the burden. At Dmac Media we recommend Image Console.
Image Console work with Irish car dealerships on a regular basis. They can provide you with the training and equipment required to shoot great car imagery. Once you have great pics they will provide branded templates for your images and the platform to publish your images/videos on all required host sites.
Taking it to the next level.
Once you have the basics looking great consider shooting some video content to really engage the customer who wants to explore a car even further.
360 views are also fast becoming the leading way to give users an interactive and engaging tour of the car. Although expensive to set up they really take the experience to the next level. See example here.
If you want to know any of the above please don’t hesitate to contact us here at dmac media.