In the new world of call centre security and the safe movement of digital or spoken data, one company has chosen to stand out from the crowd: Eckoh, the market leader in Contact Centre security and transformation, based in Hemel Hempstead, UK and with offices in the US.
Eckoh enlisted the help of Blue Frontier in a major aspect of their marketing strategy: photography.
Eckoh is currently working with Blue Frontier to build a new website with a fresh, up to the minute look. While graphics, colour, layout and design are all being regenerated, so too is imaging. But instead of going down the standard stock image route, Eckoh has decided to embark on a strategy for using bespoke photography.
The arguments in favour of stock photography are well known. It's an off the shelf approach which readily conveys a company message. However, the affordability of these images means that certain popular images tend to crop up again and again. Also finding the right image to use can take up time and while each image may be purchased for one ‘area’ of use, to re-assign that usage to a platform with a much wider reach, for instance, the cover of a brochure or even a newspaper ad can often lead to further fees which would also require a re-negotiation with the supplier. The other problem is purely down to suitability. There are some great images shot for stock but there are also those that can appear over staged, or solely developed for the US market, and as a result, lack a level of authenticity that a company requires.
Bespoke photography is often cheaper than people think
Eckoh created a detailed brief which included very clear instructions and above all a need for images that are natural, unforced, and unstaged. Making the primary focus for the shoot the product user, but no looking at the camera, no black and white, and no over syrupy images. Diversity was key, Eckoh wanted to include as many different people, in as many different locations as possible to illustrate the fact that people from all demographics are making payments and relying on online services in all kinds of outdoor, indoor or social activities. Eckoh wanted to show a mixture of ages, ethnicities, individuals and groups of friends and families. Finally, creating bespoke photography would be useless if Eckoh couldn't use the images how they needed to, so the appropriate contracts were drawn up to give Eckoh the rights to use images in any publication or media.
Step forward the actors
Fortunately, the UK is blessed with great actors and extras. What is not always as reliable is the weather - Blue Frontier used several online weather apps to cross-check the weather and postponing shoots if necessary while the rain came and went. Fairweather was on our side and the shoot lasted a total of three days and involved private spaces like a neatly manicured back garden and offices, plus public spaces such as coffee shops, parks, bars and train stations.
We worked with our extras to create images that were not over stylised and retained a subtlety. The unpredictable weather created an extended stay in a cafe and a few runs for cover while the rain stopped play, but this mix of lighting created a diverse set of landscapes and actually worked in our favour. The inclusion of early morning and evening shots saw great use of the golden hour - a magical time for any photographer, where the light creates a lovely ambience. We hit the ground running with a family of 5 including a 3-week old baby who happened to be on the shoot because she needed to be with Mum, keeping up with the youngsters left us exhausted but happy. Other days followed with differing age groups of actors with equally challenging conditions and situations that needed solving - a task Blue Frontier relished.
The end result saw a large range of photos, perfectly in tune with Eckoh's brand and new marketing needs, that can be used across a range of content from digital to print.
For further information about photography please contact our digital team.