The professional photographer is undoubtedly one of the most important external suppliers of the hotel industry. Their hiring is of utmost importance since it influences the way your customers see your product or service...

Por Arcencielstudio / March 3,2021

The professional photographer is undoubtedly one of the most important external suppliers of the hotel industry. Their hiring is of utmost importance, as it influences the way your customers view your product or service and as a result is reflected in the percentage of sales, further expanding your chances of return on investment. If you are the owner or head of sales of a hotel, regardless of its size, this article will surely interest you.


Given the large number of hotel options in most of the country’s resorts, it is of utmost importance for hotels to stand out from their competition. According to a report by two professors from Cornell and Penn State universities, “an image can sometimes change the mind of a potential client who is seeing a hotel simply because the photos seem to offer a higher level of quality than their price”. In addition, they say that “the participants in the study rejected images that look old because […] the modern is associated with cleanliness and the old with dirt”.

According to this study, the images would have a strong visual impact and directly help the potential customer to make a definitive decision.



During their study, these two teachers used eye-tracking to find out specifically why consumers choose a hotel when making an online reservation… And do you know what your customers see first? Your website, of course.


It is the business card of your business and, therefore, you have to make it look amazing with what you decide to put in it (photos, videos, text, and other graphic elements). You can spend a lot of your time and energy, in addition to making a great investment, in making your hotel an attractive and pleasant place for your guests, but if your photos do not show it, either because of the quality or because they did not know how to get the most out of your location, That investment will not reach its full intended potential, therein lies the importance of a good visual repertoire.


It is very likely that the investment that benefits you most, in the long run, will be the one you make in your visual resources, of course, as long as they are well done. Just imagine: if having better pictures allows you to increase your sales by 0.5% (a low figure not to fall into exaggeration) how many potential profits can you make in a month? And in a year?

Now, if we calculate that a photography service will cost you, on average, about $100,000 pesos (obviously it is a figure in the air since each project is different), in how long will you have your return? Very little, right? Well, that’s why when it comes to photography and the image of your hotel in general, you don’t have to go to the economy. As we say in Mexico, cheap is expensive and a bad photograph can be quite expensive.



As we mentioned, hiring a photographer is probably one of the most important investments for hotels. So try to put economic aside and focus on the photographer you see has the best quality. Here are some tips to make the best decision possible.

1. Consider several photographers
Don’t limit yourself to the local photographer or the grandson’s friend who has a good camera (no joke, I know a hotel manager who entrusted his hotel photos to his friend and you won’t imagine the kind of photos he gave him). It is important to work with the best when it comes to photography, or at least, the best option that allows your budget. Look nationwide, especially if you’re in a small town or a remote place, your photos are too important to entrust to anyone. Also, thanks to low-cost companies, the cost of transportation is no longer a brake on hiring an external photographer.

2. Carefully examine your portfolio
This tip may seem obvious, but portfolios can be deceptive. Surely in your life you have taken a photo with your cell phone or any device and thought, but what a good photo, it seems professional! And yes, it may be that, luckily, the composition, the light, the moment, everything lined up and you got a really good picture. Still, could you call yourself a professional photographer? No, right? And rightly so. Well, professional photography is about constancy, not luck. Therefore, I recommend you ask the photographers you consider hiring, a complete sample of the hotels (or at least one) that you documented, and do not limit yourself to the 3 or 4 photos that he or she selected. You might be very surprised by some photographers.

3. Verifies your experience
Documenting a hotel is not something anyone can do, experience is required. Someone who will know how to direct your people to make everything perfect. Someone who will know how to make good decisions to plan a session and achieve the perfect light conditions for photos, taking into account the regular movement of operations within your hotel and trying to affect them to the minimum.

In short, an experienced photographer knows what he or she sells in a photograph and can advise you on the use of models, for example. I also invite you to contact hotel managers in which the photographer you consider has worked to know their opinions about their work. It will give you more confidence if they have obtained positive results from their experiences.

  1. Request for a budget
    If you are ready to renew your photographic material (and/or video), we recommend you visit the website of the 3 to 5 photographers you like the most. When you contact them, they will need to see your hotel to assess your needs and the time needed to complete the requested work. This needs analysis is done live during a visit we call “scouting”. However, if you are considering one or more outsiders, this visit will not always be possible. Therefore, it is necessary to draw up a list of the areas you want to capture and send it along with your budget request.2. How do you build a quote?
    No photographer works the same way, there are some who charge by photo, others by days, others limit you in time… Here the important thing is that everything is well written and understood by you so that there are no misunderstandings at the end of the contract.
    In our case, we charge for days worked. Therefore the importance of doing the scouting or receiving a list of the requested areas. It allows us to evaluate precisely the number of hours or days needed to carry out the project. So we’re working on what we call a pre-planning of footage where we’re going to specify hour by hour, day by day, which areas are going to be worked on. In this way, it will also allow you to organize the operations of your hotel so as not to interfere with the session and vice versa.3. When to schedule the session?
    Well, once you’ve decided who to work with, the next step is to schedule a date for the session or days. It is recommended that you choose less busy days to bother as few people as possible (for example, if there is a need to close the pool for a few hours). Another factor to consider is the climate. For example, in Mexico, we have a very heavy rainy season in which it is not very advisable to schedule sessions.



4. How long does the delivery of photographs take?
Regularly the editing process is not very long. Depending on the size of the project, the delivery time (once the session is done) can vary from 5 to 10 working days. As the final payment is made on delivery, you can request a previous version with watermarks to check that the work has been done satisfactorily.


In conclusion, the time between decision making and final delivery can be as short as two or three weeks. Add an additional week for your marketing and programming team to upload them to your website and various platforms on which you promote yourself (such as Trivago, hotels, tripadvisor, …) 

In a short time, you will have successfully renewed your online image, leaving a better impression to your potential customers and starting to generate new revenue. And what do you expect to renew your photographs?


The Hotel Avela is one of the best hotels in the beach town located on the coast of Jalisco. The video production was made by Arcencielstudio