— September 19, 2017
The hero shot has become one of the most significant trends in web design over the past few years. These large, compelling visuals should express the core of your brand offering in the blink of an eye. Unfortunately, many hero shots fall short of the goal. They are too contrived, too stock, or too confusing. To really stand out, a hero shot should be authentic, natural, and beautiful. Overhauling your entire company image isn’t necessary in most cases, and it’s important to avoid going overboard with your hero shots.
Why “Hero” Shots?
The concept of a hero shot comes from superhero lore and comic book fiction. Most heroes are posed in dramatic displays that showcase their combat prowess, intellect, powers, or their other forms of significance. Most comic book covers are detailed, impactful portrayals of the titular heroes that entice readers to open the pages and read. The hero shot on your landing page is like the cover of a superhero comic book – it can entice visitors to keep scrolling and keep clicking to see what you have to offer.
Capture Something Original
If you’re able to create something wholly unique and original for your hero shot, it will stand out to your site’s visitors. Finding staged or stock photography is easy, but most internet-savvy users can easily spot a stock photograph or identify a slapdash Photoshop creation. Instead of choosing the easy, ineffective path, opt for something original and impactful for your landing pages. Some of the ways you may accomplish this include:
- Unique graphic design. Partner with a reputable graphic design professional to create something unique for your brand instead of relying on stock photography and basic logo design. The right graphic designer can help you craft a hero shot that resonates with your brand and will capture the attention of visitors to your site.
- Custom photography. Stock photography typically isn’t worth the price you pay to license it. Instead of using an image that your visitors will find on dozens of other websites, hire a professional photographer for a hero shot that is entirely your own.
- Drone footage. Drones are amazing innovations that allow the average person to take incredible photos and videos from high altitudes. Drones are affordable, easy to use, and can produce absolutely stunning results that visitors to your site won’t find anywhere else.
- Of course, you could always host a video on your landing pages. It’s wise to turn auto-play off, because a visitor who clicks on to your site and suddenly meets a noisy, abrupt video will likely mute the video or click away. Auto-play is a commonly cited frustration among internet users, so choose a thumbnail or preview frame from your video to serve as your hero shot, and then allow your visitors to choose whether or not to watch the video.
Hero Shots Make Better Landing Pages
Ultimately, the right hero shot can make your landing pages more valuable, more memorable, and more useful for driving engagement on your website. Get creative and find a way to make your hero shot stand out from your competitors, and strive to create something truly unique instead of relying on the same tired stock photos.