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Models That Are In Demand: It's Not All About Looks

Aug 17, 2007
When you think of the word "model", in the context of a human being, the immediate image that comes to mind is probably Claudia Schiffer, or some of the other Sports Illustrated swimsuit models. Modeling is much more than a pretty face and a size 0 dress, and models are used for all kinds of jobs beyond fashion photography and clothing.

When companies hire models to represent products, what they're looking for is someone who's casual and natural while also being friendly, outgoing and attractive. This is doubly important at trade shows. Observing trade shows can tell you a lot about the right and wrong ways to use models for your business, because the model is 'on the spot' for the entire show.

Trade show models, working in person, have to be outgoing, and be 'people' people. They have to like interacting with people and they have to convince the person who's hesitantly approaching them with a primeval fear of rejection that they are approachable, that they are interested in what the trade show is about, and that they can competently answer any questions the trade show attendee has. To do this, it's important to dress appropriately for the trade show.

If your trade show has people in suits, your model needs to be dressed in business attire. If your trade show has attendees in jeans and tee shirts, a model needs to dress in khakis and polos. Having a model dress in skimpy outfits at a show where that's not the expected attire will result in a '10 foot exclusion zone', where the attendees won't know how to interact with her, and will be afraid of rejection - and if the people aren't coming close to the model, the model isn't doing their client any good at all.

Ultimately, the purpose of a model at a trade show is to help a company promote a product. People looking at getting into modeling need to keep that in mind ' they have to do more than be just a pretty face, they have to engage customers and act as the first line of sales agents.

Models are hired for advertising and marketing purposes. If you're getting into modeling as a career, keep this firmly in mind. A model who appears with a product, or wearing clothes, needs to look like an 'achievable' goal. For example, showcasing a sweater, the model actually has to look like the intended demographic of customers for the sweater, or look like someone that intended demographic might know. Furthermore, the model has to manage to be relaxed, even through a photo shoot, and photo shoots are never relaxing experiences.

A good model, like any good photographic subject, knows how to enter a 'no stress space' once the lights go on, and to project an image, an aura of confidence and approachability. The model should be selling themselves as part of the entire product experience when the camera starts snapping photos.

For photo shoots, particularly product demonstration photo shoots, what you're looking for is a model that meets a particular style. They have to be look interested and competent with the products being demonstrated, and they have to look natural, and relaxed. (As anyone who's ever taken photos at a family outing can attest, looking natural and relaxed when a camera is out isn't the easiest thing in the world to learn how to do.), so conversely, models who can radiate that natural air of relaxation are much in demand.

The last set of tips for models who want to remain in demand is professionalism. Contrary to myth, models are not divas, who make the entire world revolve around them. Instead, models are cooperative professionals, who show up on time, tell people when they're going to be late, work with clients and photographers for maximum flexibility, and take the time to make the experience pleasant for everyone.

Like any professional, models live on referrals from prior clients and customers. They do their homework when doing product demonstration shoots; they learn the product, they learn the customers who'll want the product, and they learn to listen to what the client asks for. To make the most of your modeling career, and to remain a model in demand, just keep the watchwords of natural, outgoing, professional and flexible close at hand.
About the Author
Find a commercial/advertising photographer at http://www.mandarichphotography.com/
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