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All Your Questions Answered: Applegate’s Visual Storytelling Strategy

How do you tell the story of humanely-raised, natural and organic meats?

For the team at Applegate®, Natural & Organic Meats, it’s a combination of a brilliant visual storytelling team, relevant themes, fresh ingredients, and gorgeous photography flooded with natural light.


On-Demand Webinar

Now, in a new on-demand webinar, we go behind the scenes with Applegate’s creative team to get a closer look at their creative process, and an understanding of how photography affects every step of the customer journey.

Meet the Panelists:

  • Kate Winslow, Recipe Development, Stylist
  • Guy Ambrosino, Photographer
  • Colin Freeman, E-Commerce Coordinator

Watch the on-demand webinar below, and keep scrolling to get all your questions answered!


All Your Questions Answered

Read through the Q&A with Kate, Guy and Colin to get answers to our questions from the audience, and be sure to tweet any more questions @getlibris!

And, be sure to check out more of our Libris Visual Storytelling Webinars.

What is your favorite recipe you have shot and then eaten?

Kate: Honestly, there are many, but two that come to mind right now are the Italian Hoagie Salad and Easiest Chicken Pozole. The salad is delicious, light and you get all the satisfaction of eating a hoagie with a lot fewer calories since you are cutting out the roll. The Easiest Chicken Pozole is also super fresh and light and warming for cold day like today!

What camera body and lens size do you recommend?

Guy: We use a Canon 5d Mark iii It is a good solid camera and the file size (24mb) is quite good for general purpose use. Many people use zoom lenses and I think these are fine as long as they are the best glass you can get, as in the L series for Canon lenses. But I use primes (single focal length lenses). It is just my preference. I have a 50mm 1.2 and a 35 1.4 and I will often use the 100 2.8 which has macro too.

Do you shoot mostly horizontal? What size? Do you look to get squares etc. out of one image captured?

Guy: I shoot both horizontal and vertical depending on the need. We are always keeping squares in mind but when we know it is for a square end use we will compose the images just for that. It is the best practice if you know ahead of time.

Do you use a specific focal length or settings? Or is there one that you use most of the time?

Guy: My go to lens is my 50 1.2. For Applegate we are tending to shoot with more depth of field, so up around f8 -F11/16 even. But when I hand hold I like to shoot more wide open. There is a nice feel, I think to shallow depth of field, especially when shooting from the side (as opposed to straight down).

How much content do you actually create for Applegate per campaign, product or year?

Guy: We shoot about 10-14,000 images, but Applegate only gets about 20-30% of that since we edit down a lot.

Colin: Then, we will pick and choose the recipes for creative assets, digital and social alike. I am not sure how many digital assets are created, but to ensure consistency on social platforms or to promote a campaign, we will often use the same recipes. We have an incredible creative team that amazes me every day with the volume and quality of the content they create. Some examples of our social presence are:

  • Twitter – 121k followers
  • Instagram – 58.1k followers
  • Facebook – 1.3m likes
  • YouTube – 7.3k subscribers

With a large following, it is vital that we continue to produce high quality content that our consumers will engage with on a consistent basis.

I noticed the color coordination between Applegate’s site and featured images. Is there a way to search by color in Libris?

Colin: We do not tag our images by color at Applegate. I believe if you wanted to you can. Our way of staying on brand is by utilizing creative guidelines that provide what colors we use.

Related content: Download our sample metadata policy template.

On Amazon Fresh, how many times would you update per month?

Colin: We are constantly updating our products whether that be formula changes to enhance the quality of the products or the packaging to enhance the presentation of the products. Applegate is also constantly coming out with new products therefore the volume of work on Amazon alone is absolutely keeping us busy! We also have weekly initiatives such as responding to reviews, tracking our product rankings and making sure ours and competing products are compliant. I am in the back end and front end on a daily basis.

Watch the on-demand webinar to get answers to more questions, including:

  • How do you determine when/if you include the packaging in a recipe shot?
  • How do you choose your backdrops and backgrounds?
  • Even though we’ve seen direct results in sales from new photography, some of my directors don’t believe that’s what’s moving the needle. Is there a tool or way to track sales from images?

Cover photo by Guy Ambrosino, Applegate®, Natural & Organic Meats.

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