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Government’s ‘Stay at home’ advice and freelance photography service

and from hard hat, steel toe boots and hi-vis jackets to masks, eye protection and gloves?

Today, 30th March 2020, is the best day so far in the mayhem of C19.  Wm Morrison Supermarkets Plc has commissioned two photoshoots for this week.  For the past 2 weeks, our buoyant photography agency has seen widespread cancellations, all the way to July.  Our freelancers have been reporting that their diaries became empty, austere.

UNP Photo Agency Office

Working at UNP Photo Agency in March 2020, just before COVID 19 forced us to close the office doors. ©UNP 2020

The UK and the whole world are now on an emergency footing.  During these unprecedented times we would like to assure you, our customers and photographers, that UNP ‘remains open for business’.  We are determined to deliver for the clients we serve, for Amazon, Lloyds Banking Group, Aldi, Morrisons, BOC, NatWest, Parcelforce, Coop, Airbus, Ikea, Aston Martin, RBS, Rolls-Royce Holdings and for many more in the print, publishing and PR industry.

We remain open during coronavirus pandemic and we‘re working hard to ensure that the freelance photography service we provide, and all our services (office staff) and support (with library) are able to run as normal in these challenging times.

That’s why we want to assure you that we’ve built a robust frame to ensure that our services and support are able to run as normal as possible.  It is true we are no longer working from our lovely office, but thanks to the technology and state of the art equipment,  our staff are all connected from their homes and  are still available 24/7, 365, working even more united than before, as if ‘across the desk’.

 

UNP office in Leeds

Freelance photographers who work with UNP Ltd, (L to R) Mark Bickerdike and Victor De Jesus at UNP HQ in Leeds, England, UK, before Covid 19. ©Photo: UNP

We would also like to assure you that our number one priority is to make sure the safety of the photographers as well as subjects, who will be photographed, are not compromised.

Even though the situation across the world changes every minute and new developments reported are extremely fast, United National Photographer Ltd team are doing everything we can to act within government’s guidelines:

Coronavirus (COVID-19): what you need to do

Stay at home

  • Only go outside for food, health reasons or work (but only if you cannot work from home)
  • If you go out, stay 2 metres (6ft) away from other people at all times
  • Wash your hands as soon as you get home

Do not meet others, even friends or family.

You can spread the virus even if you don’t have symptoms.

As the photographers cannot work from home, and have to cover events during COVID 19 outbreak, I hate to phrase it like this, but we are very much ‘business as usual’.

Our photographers are used to having, wearing personal protective equipment, PPE.  This used to be hard hat, steel toe cap & midsole boots and hi-visibility clothing.  As we move on to new “territories” perhaps there should be a call for photographers who work on locations on freelance basis to protect themselves by using a personal protective equipment similar to what the front line personnel at the hospitals are using, appropriate masks, long-sleeved gowns, eye protection and gloves?

Please stay safe and healthy.

Hamlet Mejloumian

MD, UNP Ltd

 

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.