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How to Become a Professional Lodging Photographer

By Ron Lee
Published: 02/21/17 Topics: AirBnB, Marketing, Photography, Property Management Comments: -

Becoming a professional lodging photographer has never been easier.

All you need is a camera and business cards. Just put the words "Professional Photographer" on the cards and people will think you are a pro.

Can you imagine a doctor getting away with that? Would you go to a dentist who says, "I am a professional dentist" who didn't have the training? Yikes. Those people would be driven out of the industry.

Unfortunately, there have always been a greatly many people who love the idea of being an artist, a photographer. It sounds like such a great job. For Inns, Resorts & Vacation Rentals, photos are the way guests make instant decisions to view your property or pass on to the next.

No longer is it necessary to burn hundreds of dollars of physical film, toil in the dark room and only later learn if your photos were adequate. Now a good digital camera gives you a thumbnail view instantly that you can call "good enough."

But, great camera gear doesn't make you a true photographer any more than buying your new born child a piano and pronouncing them a "Concert Pianist."

Today, a new higher title has been added to the photography professional. Its called "High Dynamic Range," or HDR, and it is a vastly superior way of shooting, processing, and delivering world class photography. It is a requirement for almost all photos, but an absolute requirement for shooting interior architectural images.

HDR Photos are crisp, clean and brighter, but only enough to match what the human eye actually perceives. By comparison, non-HDR photos are fuzzy, bland, and actually underestimate and mis-represent the property.

Unfortunately, most professional photographers are no longer professional because they are more in love with being "Artists" than they are in spending thousands of hours mastering HDR.

That means more lodging operators are wasting lots of money hiring pros or don’t begin to understand HDR.

To see the difference between Pros and HDR Pros, all you have to do is spend a little time examining listings on your favorite websites like VRBO.com, Expedia.com, or even AirBnB.com.

A company called Evolve Vacation Rentals offers "Free Professional Photography" to property owners. Because Evolve does not have on site staff they must call any "professional photographer" they can find and hire them without realizing that non HDR photos are robbing their listings of maximum bookings.

Headquartered in Portland, Oregon, Vacation Vacation Rentals does the same thing. Their recent foray into Matterport 3D photos is a good start, but ignoring HDR still photos causes them to lose bookings.

Turnkey Rentals out of Austin is trying to take over the world, but right there on their home page are fuzzy, out of focus, non-HDR photos. How could a management company call themselves professional when the number one listing tool - photos - are all messed up?

All of these companies talk the professional photographer game, but non walk the walk. And all because they refuse to spend the slightly more money necessary to find and employ high level HDR photographers.

Ignoring the absolute requirement for HDR photos is like the proverbial canary in the coal mine. If your manager does not understand the difference between truly professional HDR photos and wanna be professional photographers, what else don’t they understand?

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Author: Ron Lee – Not a Photographer, Signatour Photo Team
Blog #: 0521 – 02/21/17
Source: Signatours.com

Autumn is Industry Conference Season for Lodging

By Wm. May
Published: 11/16/16 Topics: AirBnB, Hotels, Inns Comments: -

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Grading Vacation Rentals on the Curve

By Wm. May
Published: 10/01/16 Topics: AirBnB, Vacation Rental Association, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

Research has showed that average ratings on AirBnB are a full one start higher than the number of stars for homes on HomeAway.com.Could this mean that only the better homes are listed on AirBnB? Nah,. Just the opposite. Read more

AirBnB Racism Faciliated by Social Media

By Wm. May
Published: 06/01/16 Topics: Comments: -

Surely, building familiarity with guests and hosts is a good thing. The world needs more communication and personal interaction. But the very act of showing a photograph of every host gives racists the key to shunning people they don’t like. Read more

Server Crash All Night Bash

By William May
Published: 03/25/16 Topics: Self Improvement Comments: -

Getting good folks to work for you is easier than you think. All you gotta do is put yourself in their shoes, and do it literally. Leaders do the toughest jobs, not the easiest. Leaders must be outfront or they are really only stragglers. Read more

Best Halloween Advertising. Cheapest too.

By William May
Published: 10/31/15 Topics: Advertising, Marketing Comments: -

Many experts will rattle your brain with every kind of advertising and marketing. But the restaurant - Two Doors Down - exceeds them all with their latest Halloween advertising idea. It may not be what you expect. Boo. Read more

Most Professional Photographers Are Not

By William May
Published: 10/22/15 Topics: Comments: -

New technology has created three photography skill levels - Amateur, Professional and HDR Pro. Nothing but the top level of High Dynamic Range photos are good enough for business that want to stand out on the web, in print and achieve the greatest possible sales. Is your photographer at the top level? Read more

Leisure Link Says Bad Photos a Deadly Sin

By Noel Poage
Published: 09/25/15 Topics: Channel Managers, Photography Comments: -

A long time technology provider to lodging properties recently published the seven sins of distribution> Perhaps the most striking is how dramatically bad photo produce bad booking results. Here is how to avoid the problem. Read more

BookingSync.com is right about photography

By Noel Poage
Published: 07/01/15 Topics: Comments: -

We have to hand a prize to Sébastien Grosjean, CEO of BookingSync a vacation rental software and channel management company. In his recent video posts he covers the basics of shooting photography. But how about HDR? Read more

Cell Phone Photos Are Not Just Fine

By William May
Published: 06/01/15 Topics: Comments: -

Would you think that major vacation rental websites would know photos are the number one method to attract more guests, more bookings and higher rates? So how come some think taking snaps on a cell phone is good enough. When good enough never is. Read more

Drones Will One Day Be Old News

By William May
Published: 05/01/15 Topics: Hotels, Photography Comments: -

Hoteliers are all anxious to get aerial photos of their properties from drones. Good idea and we do them. Here is why they would be better off to invest I High Dynamic Range (HDR) Photos instead. Read more

Website Magazine Warns Blogging Copyright Infringers

By Joseph Romain
Published: 04/01/15 Topics: Copyrights, Legal, Photography Comments: -

Website Magazine covers everything digital and in now is taking a strong stand to educate readers about how stealing copyrighted materials is a big no-no and one that will cost them lots of money when copyright holders catch them in the act. Read more

How to Choose a Vacation Rental Photographer

By William May
Published: 03/01/15 Topics: Photography Comments: -

Guest give websites but a few scant seconds to decide if it's professional, if it has what they need, and whether they are willing to look further. In one seconds, people read only a few words but glancing at a photo reveals dozens of thoughts and conveys quality, emotion, and content. Read more

Expert Says Photos Best Return on Investment

By Joseph Romain
Published: 02/01/15 Topics: Marketing, Photography, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

Matt Landau, founder of VactionRentalMarketingBlog.com has some surprising insights into the top 10 steps that can help property owners and managers increase bookings and revenue. His research reveals much about photography. Read more

Talk Talk Talk Talk Talk

By William May
Published: 01/23/15 Topics: Communications, Football, Sports Comments: 1

Why does Seahawks Football Team Quarterback Russell Wilson talk so much. Even have a well called play he can not shut up. Neither should you if you want to achieve the kind of success he has. Read more

Christmas Trees Endanger the World

By William May
Published: 01/17/15 Topics: Government Comments: -

This is not a story about prohibiting Christmas trees from governmental property due to freedom of religion restrictions. Instead, it’s a new taking of your ability to put a Christmas Tree in the lobby of privately owned condo buildings, restaurants and more. Geeeesh. Is nothing sacred? Read more

HDR Photography is not HD

By William May
Published: 01/01/15 Topics: Comments: -

Only one in every ten thousand amateur photographers, and only one out of a thousand professionals have an understanding of High Dynamic Range (HDR) photos. That terminology has nothing to do with the common High Definition description of TV's and monitors. Everyone in lodging should know the difference. Read more

Outdoors-For-All, the Heros Among Us

By William May
Published: 06/09/14 Topics: Comments: -

Donate your home to charities for their use and fundraising and post your generosity on VacationRentalAgents.com. See how the Ski-For-All Foundation gave property owners the great satisfaction of helping disabled kids and adults to ski. Read more

Crowing About Our New Mobile Website

By William May
Published: 05/01/14 Topics: Comments: -

It may not sound earth-shaking but Redstone Systems, creator of the HelpBook.me software has just added their evolutionary new mobile websites to our system. Check it on your mobile phone now. Read more

What I do for a living

By William May
Published: 04/08/14 Topics: Comments: -

After a tragedy that has taken dozens of life in the small town of Oso Washington State, first-responders open the door to untrained volunteers after realizing they are better equipped at working in such difficult conditions. Read more

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