When it comes to using social media, email, and even your website for marketing, nothing says, “ignore me” quite the way cheesy stock photography does. Fortunately, you have options. [level-members]
One option is to to take the time to seek out better images. You can do this either by paying a lot more for higher quality images at sites like Getty Images, or you can go entirely in the other direction and use a tool like Google Images to seek out images that are free to use.
Whatever you do, don’t use an image without paying for it (if required) or giving proper attribution. (The images you’ll find on Google Images can be filtered to include only those that can be used commercially, and each image will have its own terms and conditions regarding attribution, etc.)
Another option is to take photos yourself. This takes a bit more effort, perhaps, but not necessarily any more time. (Use the tools above to try to find the image you want. If you aren’t picky you can find an image immediately. But getting just the right image – that’s going to take some digging.)
There are plenty of how-to sites and YouTube videos to help you be a better photographer. We’ve come across these two which are wine-specific and worth a read, even if they’re more technical than you’re comfortable getting.
Whatever route you take, the effort you put into making your imagery more personal will help you create a personality for your shop that is far more attractive than anyting a big branding agency could develop.