Standing Out From the Crowd

There seems to be a lot of “vanilla sameness” everywhere these days. I watch cable news and all I hear is “blah, blah, blah”. It’s all the same.  One of my wife’s favorite sayings is – “same circus – just different clowns”.  I find the same with photography these days. The level of our craft has skyrocketed over the last 10 years. Between great technology and available education – you are all creating stunning images. So how can we be different and stand out?

Although I do not participate in many bridal shows any more (that’s a subject for a different day), the one thing I have noticed over the years is how most photographers’ products look and feel the same. Black and brown leather album covers for instance. How is a client supposed to remember you and your studio if your offerings are the same as the photographer in the next booth? You need to mix it up and be different. Go ahead and step out of that comfort zone!


A photographer friend of mine only delivers large white sample albums to wedding venues with a very large logo on the cover. These white albums really stand out against all the other sample albums at venues. After couples have visited three or four potential wedding venues and notice his albums everywhere (they are hard to miss), they come to the conclusion that this photographer must me awesome because every hotel and country club is showing his work.

Returning to the bridal show displays – I like to feature album covers that are different. I display these is my studio and always show potential clients something very distinctive. Some of the ways to stand out are –

  • Use unexpected album cover materials – H&H has an amazing selection
  • Add a trio cameo to your standard cover to take it up a notch
  • Consider using different papers – I like both Art Matte and Luxe Photographic. I have both and always get positive feedback from clients.
  • How about incorporating the new large modern imprinting on the cover of your sample albums. I have a book with Art Matte paper, the new Navy Blue Linen material and a simple large imprint on the cover “Tricia & Richie”. This album looks and feels (notice the word feel) modern, clean and different. I also love the light gray faux suede leather album shown below.


The ironic thing with all of this – is that when it comes time to order, most clients like to play it safe and get simple album covers with regular photographic paper.

Don’t limit your product showings to just albums. We all show prints and canvases. Remember your competition is doing the same thing with their awesome images too. So assuming all the photography is great – change up the product. Another great example would be the Classic Modern framed torn edge prints that H&H offer.  These take your work to a whole new level, creating a fine art look.

I would think about carrying this practice over to other areas of your business and look for areas to be different. I’ll leave you with one more idea to consider – business cards. I collect a lot of business cards at trade shows and I can tell you most could use a make-over. If you handed someone your business card – would they comment on how nice and different it is?


William Innes is a Los Angeles Wedding Photographer and educator with the Wedding Photography Boot Camp.

H&H Color Lab

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