Why is it important to put effort into your before and after photos? Because these photos directly correlate to jobs scheduled. Before and after photos act as proof to customers and prospects that you’ll be able to accomplish what you say you will, because they can see that you’ve done it numerous times before! The more professional your photos look, the more professional it makes your company look.
Pictures can come in handy if there are any discrepancies between you and your customer. Additionally, getting in the habit of taking pictures before and after each job builds an archive showing your cleaning abilities, which you can draw from at any time. Use the photos to flesh out your website, marketing materials, and social media profiles.
Here are some quick and easy ways you can up your smartphone photography game:
1. Keep it Clean
Since you likely access your phone multiple times throughout the day, you probably don’t pay too much attention to where you set it down. Not a big deal, until you consider the fact that your phone’s lens is being exposed to dirt, dust, and other things that could make the pictures you take appear cloudy or hazy.
Purchase a lens cloth (you can get one for less than $10 on Amazon), and make a habit of carrying it with you. Give your phone’s lens a quick swipe or two before you start photographing, and you’ll be guaranteed a crystal clear image every time!
A clean lens versus a smudged lens.
2. Get the Light Right
Lighting is another important aspect to consider. For the most accurate photos, try to ensure that the lighting is the same (or as similar as possible) in both the before and the after image. This will make your work shine through: otherwise, the bright more sun could make dirty carpet look cleaner than it is, or a late afternoon shadow could dampen the results of your after photo.
If your job goes on for many hours, or if the clouds happen to roll in while you’re working, there are many apps and native tools on your phone that can help increase or decrease a photograph’s brightness (or adjust it in other ways). We recommend utilizing these tools as needed to ensure the lighting in both photographs is as similar as possible.
A well-lit image versus a too-dark image.
3. Give Yourself a Lot to Work With
Always err on the side of caution and take multiple pictures of the situation, both before and after you start working. Doing so ensures that you have a variety of options to choose from in case one of the photos is washed out, dark, or blurry (which is common with phone photography).
Try taking photos from a variety of angles, too — this will affect the lighting (which could be a good or bad thing, depending), and try getting a few shots both close up and further away from the floor (or whatever you happen to be cleaning).
A steady photo versus a blurry photo.
4. Stay Away from Flash
Avoid using flash as much as possible. It can alter the colors and overall appearance of items in your photograph, which doesn’t make for the most ‘true-to-life’ photographs, and, most importantly, it doesn’t do much to highlight your cleaning efforts.
Natural light is always your best bet (and, as we mentioned in the above section about lighting, the more consistency there is between the before and after photos, the better).
No flash on the left versus flash on the right.
5. Don’t Zoom
If you feel like you need to get closer to the stain, get closer physically! Zoom often makes images appear grainy and low quality, which detracts from the photo.
The quality of a zoomed photo is never very good.
6. Utilize Your Phones’ Auto-Adjust Feature
An easy and fast way of getting the best picture possible that’s often overlooked is to simply touch your phone’s screen where the main object is. This will auto-adjust the photo to ensure that your subject is in focus, and isn’t too light or too dark. If the auto-adjustment isn’t enough for your liking, fine-tune it up or down accordingly until you’re satisfied.
Don’t let the excuse of not having a ‘professional’ camera hold you back from doing one of the most effective things you can towards increasing sales. Make sure your before and after photos show your customers and prospects that you do good work. The goal of taking before and after photos is to showcase your cleaning efforts and skills. Be sure your pictures are accurately documenting the situation and how you cleaned it — not how novice your photography skills are!