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5 Things that Make a Successful Social Media Photo Shoot

When I hear the words ‘Social Media Photo Shoot’ these days, it’s hard to narrow down in my own head what that means, exactly. And I am a professional photographer! That's because almost all of the images that I take for my clients end up on social media at some point.

It’s the main way that brands and businesses market and tell their stories these days, and the power it holds can’t be overstated. To be able to capture someone’s attention for more than a half a second, and make them take a longer glance at the image you’ve shared, is literally the difference between a potential new client and another person scrolling by your post, never to be heard from.

Social media shoots tend to be a bit more casual, even playful. They aren't normally 'styled' as studio shoots, necessarily. That said, they do tend to be very well planned out and a detailed shot list is key to being able to move through shots at a quicker pace.

There are some fairly common and important tricks that can definitely set you and your imagery apart, and can insure a more successful social media photo shoot..

Branding, Branding, and more Branding

If you have a logo, and it’s printed on any of your packaging at all, you should definitely include that in some or all of your images.

If you specialize in vegetarian food, then you should convey that in your images.

If you specialize in high quality, organic menu ingredients, you should convey that in your images as well.

If your brand used all recycled materials in it’s packaging, find a way to convey that in as many shots as possible.

The bottom line, decide what the most important aspects of your business are, and what you want people to know, and convey that in your social media imagery.

The Human Presence

There’s something about having people in photos, holding a delicious sandwich or drink, gathered around a dinner table, or at a party, enjoying themselves, that draws us in and makes us want to be part of the experience.

It can be as simple as someone holding a small pitcher and pouring syrup or milk, or it can be one or 2 or even more people smiling and enjoying themselves. But, having that human presence makes photos much more interesting and captivating in general.

Style the Food

If your business has anything to do with food at all, then you will want to be very mindful of how that food looks on camera. Some foods photograph well easily, and others take a LOT of work to make it look good and appetizing.

This is, again, where a good professional food photographer will be able to work their magic and make everything look so amazing that potential customers will want to buy your products.

Hire a Professional When I say a professional, I don’t just mean any professional photographer. I mean one that has worked extensively with food and also with people. There is an art to being able to catch just the right light, just the right angles, and just the right look on someone’s face, or the way they are holding a sandwich, a fork, or a glass in their hands. And a good food and lifestyle photographer will know these things and know how to create just the right scene. They also will have the right equipment to be able to take the very best quality photos for you. While phone cameras are in everyone’s pocket these days, there is a clear and discernible difference in the quality of those shots vs ones taken with a good full frame camera and lens.

Have a Shot List and Have Fun!

Unlike some in studio food photography, where the staging and styling can take hours and must be done impeccably, social media shoots can be fun, can move more quickly, and you can get a lot of great images, if everything is planned well and falls into place. Having a shot list in advance and having some idea what sorts of shots you are looking for is extremely helpful in assuring that you get the most bang for your buck and that you end up with some really eye catching images.

If you are interested in scheduling a social media photo shoot, please contact me at, I’d love to work with you!


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