ANTICIPATION – the key to a successful photo report


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"A picture is worth a thousand words ". (Confucius)

A picture is often the first point of contact between your hotel (or brand) and its customers. As the main decision-making lever at the time of booking, it is therefore your number 1 sales tool.

By carefully preparing your photo report, you can guarantee the creation of photos that:
- showcase the hotel and its brand, while providing an accurate representation;
- communicate what's on offer, i.e. the hotel's key components and services, as well as your values and identity;
- are appealing enough to attract guests and memorable enough to make you stand out from the competition.

Who should handle your photo report?

It is very important to choose a professional photographer that specialises in architecture and interior design. Equipped with the proper technical equipment, they have all the necessary skills to:
- list and estimate the work time;
- adapt to and implement the constraints of your brand's photography brief;
- bring their experience (framing, light, staging, etc.) and their personal artistic touch;
- deliver files that are adapted to all your future needs: posters, brochures, PowerPoint presentations, websites, etc.

For your convenience, the Global Marketing Department works alongside specialist agencies and selects the best photographers that are referenced by country or geographical area. Do not hesitate to contact them!

Example of planning a report at Novotel

How do you prepare it?

Ahead of this report, it is essential to appoint a person who will successively be in charge of liaising between the hotel staff, the photographer and possible guests or models.
Their mission will be to:
- coordinate the preparation and progress of the report with the photographer (scouting, briefing, etc.);
- respond to the photographer's queries beforehand and their requests during shooting (accessories, staging, etc);
- mobilise the necessary human resources (staff needed for preparing spaces and for any requirements regarding extras, jobs or guests);
- ensuring that all conditions are met for promoting the hotel and facilitating the work by teams (photographer, staff, etc.) without disturbing the customers' stay.
- manage administrative follow-up (contract for the transfer of photographers' rights, approval from extras, etc.).

As such, a good knowledge of the brand's photography brief – including the presence or absence of extras, accessories, framing and/or special lighting – is essential.

- the contract for the transfer of the photographer's rights, in the official Accor format;
- the contract for the transfer of the extras' image rights, in the official Accor format
must be signed before the report.

Find out more ...

When to organise it?

Several parameters should be taken into account in order to schedule this photo report at the best time:
- The hotel's occupancy: you may have trouble getting guests to participate during the off-season; likewise, staff will probably be completely focused on meeting the requirements of the guests when the hotel is very busy.
- The season and weather: these factors heavily influence the brightness and exposure of the hotel areas, and therefore the aesthetic of the photos (sunrise/sunset, outside view, sunshower effect, interplay of light and shadow, etc.), especially if you plan to shoot outdoors.
- The hotel's surrounding area: ensuring in advance that the building is accessible, that there are no works in the vicinity or any other event that may interfere with the smooth running of the photo shoot, will save you time and unnecessary stress.

Is your hotel really ready for this photo report?

Here is a non-comprehensive list that will allow you to check whether all the hotel areas have been carefully prepared for D-day:
- Rooms: impeccably made beds; ironed duvet/sheets and pillowcases; clean windows; neatly arranged furniture; vacuumed carpets, etc.
- Bathrooms: completely clean; carefully laid out (towels, bathroom products), etc.
- Lounges, bars and restaurants: perfectly laid tables, meticulously arranged furniture and accessories, clear and harmonious layout, etc.
- Outside areas: clean windows and signs; immaculate flags; maintained green areas; neatly arranged terraces; towels folded around the pool, etc.
- Forbidden in all areas: obsolete signs and/or logos; objects that are not "evergreen" (posters, calendars, magazines, etc.); unsightly details (CMV, extinguishers, false ceilings, damaged decorative features, ashtrays, etc.), used bulbs, withered plants and bouquets, etc.

Did you know?

The Photo Library website has a "practical information" section where you can find all of this information ... and much more!

We’ll be back next month with another informative article…

Photo credits : Pierre-Emmanuel Rastoin (23/01/2015)
Ali Rangoonwalla (06/12/2018)