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Are You Addicted to Business Porn?

Posted by Jason Wells on October 29th, 2012 at 3:28 pm
Last week the Conversion Scientist, Brian Massey, was our guest on the LogMyCalls Thursday Marketing Webinar Series. He gave us some incredible, incredible, advice on how to improve website performance and conversion rates.
He also said some really funny--and true--stuff.
He  warned us against the evils of business porn.
What is business porn?
Business porn is the dreaded stock photo. We've all seen them. Images of pretty ladies or handsome dudes wearing headsets for no apparent reason.
Or, perhaps it could be guys in suits sitting at a boardroom table.
The photos all have the same sterile imaging, the same pretty faces, and even the same random obession with everyone wearing headsets for no apparent reason. The Conversion Scientist called these images 'business porn.'
We Were Once Addicted to Business Porn

Business Porn

On our corporate site we used to have page after page of pornographic business images. These were lurid business porn images that shocked the conscience and stunned the sensibilities of the American public. They bordered on obscene.These business porn images included a dark haired woman in a headset sitting in some sort of a weird call center environment, a man looking at the camera and smiling creepily, as well as entire rows of people with headsets on.

All of these images were business porn. Fortunately, several months ago we redid our site and changed all of them. But there are still several sites containing business porn.
Why To Avoid Business Porn
Maybe you're saying to yourself, "What's wrong with stock photos? Just using them once won't hurt. I won't get addicted." Yes you will. Business porn can ensnare your website, kill your business relationships, and even sink your once proud conversion tools.
You shouldn't use stock photos for several reasons:
1) Confusion - Who are these people? Why are they on your site? Do they work with you, or are they models? Why are people standing around a boardroom wearing headsets? Why are these pornographic images on your website?
2) Lack of Creativity - By now, everyone has seen the same stock images over and over. They've seen our friendly lady with a headset on thousands of websites. These images demonstrate a total lack of creativity. You are simply screaming to your audience: "We can't think of anything better to show you so we're going to punt and show you some business porn." That's not a good look for your company.
3) What Are You Accomplishing? - Everything on your site should be designed to accomplish something. Does a random picture of a lady in a headset help your website accomplish its goal?
Alternatives to Business Porn
The biggest question webinar attendees had for Brian Massey last week was this: what do I use instead of business porn? In other words, people know they need images on their site, they just don't have a clue what those images should be.
Here are some suggestions:
1) Use actual images of your employees at work.
2) Get a designer to some artwork. This is not as expensive as it sounds. A few hundred bucks can get you several images to put on your website.
3) Show images of the area where your company is located.
4) Go to Pinterest and search for your industry and you'll find all sorts of images that will give you ideas.
5) Use an image that explains something. Show your product in action.
Avoid business porn like the plague it is.

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