Nice little Q&A in PR Week regarding UNP @Photo_Agency, availability, consistency & quality in PR photography and on benefits of using a photographic agency.

PR Photo of PopWorld Stonegate Pub Co ©UNP

Photo: © Emily Whitfield Wicks / UNP at Popworld in Plymouth.  Commissioned by Leisure Public Relations for Stonegate Pub Company national campaign.

Photo:  ©Michael Poloway / UNP outside The Cavern Club nightclub, birth place of the Beatles, Liverpool.  Commissioned by Clearbox Communications for Amazon UK for their Prime Now national campaign.

Photo: ©Derek Ironside / UNP.  Commissioned by Archetype Agency for Nespresso opening at Union Square, Aberdeen.

Photo: ©Teri Pengilley / UNP  at Lee Valley White Water centre, Waltham Cross, London.  Commissioned by Kindred Agency for WRAP (The Waste and Resources Action Programme) nationwide campaign to highlight the power of recycling. 

Photo: ©Photo David Fleming / UNP at Banbury Sub Aqua Club, Oxfordshire.  Commissioned by Escapade Public Relations for Mars Milk nationwide campaign. 

Photos show various NatWest branches

A board of photos taken for NatWest in various parts of UK. Photos: ©UNP

As a picture editor or Press Officer, you’re used to commissioning lots of photography. No doubt you have your go-to photographers for each type of project you’re working on, but what do you do when they’re not available? And what happens when you’re spinning lots of plates at once?

We think we have the answer: here are five signs you could benefit from using a photography agency.


1. You have multiple locations


Photos showing Aldi supermarket in various parts of UK. Photos: ©UNP

A board of photos taken for Aldi in various parts of UK. Photos: ©UNP

If you are a business or organisation with multiple locations or if your nationwide campaign requires multi-city photography this can create numerous logistical hurdles. You may want to commission some business headshots, get some photos of your new offices in multiple locations, or you have cheque presentations and ribbon cuttings across the country. It is important to get them done as quickly and efficiently as possible without it dragging on or causing issues.

Photos showing Co-op Food in various parts of UK. Photos: ©UNP

A board of photos taken for Co-op Food in various parts of UK. Photos: ©UNP

Finding a good quality local photographer for all your photoshoot locations in the first instance can be tricky. If they are any good, no doubt they will be busy so even getting hold of them can be hard. By using a photographic agency, all of the sourcing of freelance photographers, booking and coordination is dealt with by them. If anything goes wrong at any of your photoshoots, you have one point of contact (instead of several individual photographers).

photos taken for Parcelforce in various parts of UK.

A board of photos taken for Parcelforce in various parts of UK. Photos: ©UNP

2. You spend a lot of time getting quotes and comparing photography rates….


Morrisons Let's Grow campaign image

A board of photos taken for Morrisons Let’s Grow campaign in various parts of UK. Photos: ©UNP

Individual freelancers set their own fees (and so they should). But here’s where it gets tricky: some include the extras like travel, mileage, parking, congestion charges, expenses, and post production time, and others do not. If you commission a lot of photography comparing one service with another isn’t easy, and neither is keeping control over your project costs. At UNP we have a set fee structure which is an all-inclusive hourly rate. This means that the photography price you see is the price you pay so there are no nasty surprises or extra expenses further down the line.

Sainsbury's 'Manager campaign' in various parts of UK

A board of photos taken for Sainsbury’s ‘Manager campaign’ in various parts of UK. Photos: ©UNP


3. …Then you spend a lot of time repeating your photography brief to individual photographers


Tesco openings in various parts of UK

A board of photos for Tesco openings in various parts of UK. Photos: ©UNP

In any creative process, the brief is vital if your photographer has any chance of getting the end product right. This can be a painstaking process if you have to repeat yourself time and again across different communication platforms to different photography suppliers. By using a photo agency, you only have to do this once. All photo assignments with the photographers after that point is taken care of by the picture editors and photo coordinators. This leaves you to get on with your day job and stay focussed.


4. Getting a consistent look from one job to the next isn’t easy


ASDA's 'Managers campaign' in various parts of UK

A board of photos taken for ASDA’s ‘Managers campaign’ in various parts of UK. Photos: ©UNP

The look and feel of your photos (elements like the colour balance, brightness, contrast, levels, size)  is all part of your brand. It isn’t always possible to book the same photographer, so ensuring that the look and feel of the end product remains consistent isn’t easy. An experienced photography agency should be able to solve this problem for you. At UNP we make sure we get to know you and your brand, and take care of the editing ourselves, so that we only ever send you photos you can actually use.

McCarthy And Stone in various parts of UK

A board of photos taken for McCarthy And Stone in various parts of UK. Photos: ©UNP


5. You have a last minute requirement that needs fulfilling yesterday


We know that photography isn’t the first thing on everyone’s to do list. After an event has been organised, or a project has been finished it’s usually the last thing on people’s minds, and time is tight. Nobody wants to be held up moving into a new office, or launching a product because the photography is delayed! In these cases, you need a quick response, and a speedy turnaround that isn’t always possible when dealing with individual photographers. Any professional, well established agency will have people on the ground where you need them, they will already know their photographer’s availability, and be able to produce results when it counts.

A board of photos taken for Lindt openings in various parts of UK. Photos: ©UNP

If you have never considered using a photography agency before, but can relate to any of the signs above then why not send an email or give our team a call before your next project? We would be thrilled to work with you.



PR photo of a man standing by the wall

Three reasons top quality photography is vital for your PR & Marketing

You might be a business with hundreds of staff or a one-man band living out your freelance dream; at either end of the business spectrum your next sale is vital. In an era when attention spans are shrinking and we are becoming increasingly distracted, it is now more important than ever to capture the consumer’s attention, communicate your message quickly, and lead them through to making a sale. But how?

Our experience tells us that the images & photographs used in your PR & Marketing efforts can make a measurable difference to the success of any campaign, be it local or national. Here are three reasons why quality PR photography is worth the investment:

Capture their attention

Whether you are trying to grab the attention of an end user, or someone in the media who might feature your story, images are crucial. In the case of an editorial piece, most stories or announcements won’t even be considered for publication without an accompanying image. Publishers know that a good photograph draws attention and makes an article more memorable for the reader. In some cases where you are charged for page space, using any old photograph to accompany your story is a lost opportunity and a waste of money. Make your images work for you by commissioning or choosing top-quality, PR photographers.

Trust Ford photo

The phrase “a picture is worth a thousand words” might sound clichéd but we think it is true

If you are trying to reach your market on social media, the recent evolution of all platforms toward a more image-based feed should give you some clues. Research shows that posts with accompanying quality images see a huge increase in engagement levels. Buffer saw a 150% increase in retweets when an image was used with a tweet. This kind of engagement is hard to ignore; photographs stop customers in their tracks, so make good use of them.

Communicate your message

The phrase “a picture is worth a thousand words” might sound clichéd but we think it is true. We believe good PR & Marketing photography can communicate in seconds what it would take minutes to grasp when using the written word alone. In addition, imagery is proven to make your statement more memorable too. According to Hubspot, people retain only 10% of the information they hear three days after they hear it. If that same information is paired with a relevant image, however, people retain 65% of the information in the same timeframe.

Take a moment to think, then, what your current imagery is communicating about your company. If the old adage is true then it unfortunately works both ways. Using poor quality photos shot by a colleague, over-used stock photos, or dodgy selfies on social media profiles might be sending potential customers all the wrong signals which are in stark contrast to your excellent service offering. You have an excellent product that deserves excellent images to represent it. By commissioning top-quality photographs for your press or PR, you will have a total control over the end result (the images) and the message you communicate to your audience.

Be Consistent

Here’s an interesting fact: In 2018 82% of customers viewed five or more pieces of content from the winning vendor before making a purchase. Put differently; it takes five or more touch points (a direct mail, an advert, some online content) for you to win over potential clients. What this means for all of us is that we have to be consistent across all our PR & Marketing platforms whether on- or off-line. It’s not enough to have a one-off piece of incredible editorial coverage if your website and social media platforms are lagging behind. It is vital that your next customer sees a consistent, quality brand and message whenever and wherever they come into contact with your business.

Children at Churchill retiramen livin photocall

We don’t keep our clients waiting and deliver the images same day if required, to meet your deadlines.

This might sound costly to implement, but the good news is that once you have a decent library of quality, bespoke photographs, be it head and shoulder shots of your staff, or PR photos for your internal or external communications, you can use them again and again across all your PR and marketing channels.

Our view

We know that captivating, consistent imagery that communicates your message and represents your brand well don’t happen by chance. It does take time and effort, however we know that once you have a quality image library at your disposal it can be accessed time and again for multiple purposes, for years to come.  So, if you’re feeling like your photo library could do with an update, then get in touch with our team and we will organise a photoshoot for you.

What we offer

Here, at UNP, we understand every customer is different. We take the time and work with you to establish a brief that is right for your marketplace, and to capture the images that matter most. Our services are bespoke, from beginning to end.

We understand and can work within tight project deadlines. We can deliver the final set of images within 24 hours. Through a secure portal provided by Photoshelter, you can review your editorial or PR photos, whenever and wherever you are.

If you have a project you would like to talk to us about please contact us today.