Photography for Non-Profit Organizations | Hello West Michigan

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When you’re a non-profit organization, making sure every dollar goes as far as it can is important. After working with non-profits for 15 years, it’s a story we hear often.

One area that many organizations and associations struggle with is “photo and video” of their events. Over the past 15 years we’ve seen a small amount of photography do wonders for some organizations (like Senior Neighbors reaching 20,000 people organically on Facebook) and we’ve seen photo and video fall flat for other groups who didn’t know how to best capture the great events they are hosting.

One organization that has made great use of their photo and video budget has been Grand Rapids based “Hello West Michigan”.

They are a non-profit association promoting West Michigan as a place where business thrives and people want to live and work. Their members are businesses looking for new talent (think Human Resources teams) and they serve new residents moving into the West Michigan area.

Hello West Michigan has utilized their photo time by making sure we were are a part of their “Signature Events”. More than likely, you have a few events like this throughout the year as we ll. These events bring more people into your path and through them, you are able to create new relationships (and eventually donors or members to your cause).

Hello West Michigan hosts 3 such signature events throughout the year: Annual Meeting, Intern Connect and ReThink West Michigan.

With these 3 key events in mind, Hello West Michigan knew they wanted strong photos from each event in order to promote the NEXT event. With that in mind, starting in 2015, we began working together and over the course of the past few years, we’ve been able to create a great library of images.


Having professional photos of our events have been a game changer for our program marketing. If there’s the smallest possibility of repeating the event next year, having photos is a must for  future  promotion. Even if you know it’s a 1-time only event, having great photos to update your followers after a 1-time event makes for better social content  because social media is so visually driven. Don’t expect on a few grainy, pics you snapped on your phone to make a big impact on posts. We work with Tiberius Images because they really partner with us on each event and do more than just show up on event day and tell us to say “cheese.”

Rachel Bartels, Hello West Michigan


Annual Meeting

2018 Annual Meeting attendees heard the latest and greatest from Executive Director Cindy Brown about the status of Hello West Michigan’s efforts to attract talent to West Michigan.

In addition, Matt Jung, CEO of Comfort Research spoke on the topic of “How To Create An Absurdly Awesome Culture”. His company invented the “Big Joe” bean bag and has since brought innovation to the furniture industry as well as creating a company culture focused around “Fun”.

If you are looking to find out where the “Human Resources” teams in West Michigan gather, it’s at the Hello West Michigan Annual Meeting.

Intern Connect

An internship is one of the best ways to explore career options while in college.

So why not host an event where interns can meet other interns who are in the Grand Rapids are for the summer?

That’s exactly what Summer Intern Connect has become and Hello West Michigan helped bring it to life.

Interns enjoy an evening outdoors in downtown Grand Rapids, a great meal, games, prizes and the chance to network with professionals in the community.

ReThink West Michigan

The Thanksgiving holiday brings many people back to West Michigan. If you're coming, why not explore career options?

On Thanksgiving eve, area companies and non-profit organizations come together to show you it might be time to comeback to your hometown. 

Some of the areas largest employers (like Spectrum Health, Meijer, SpartanNash, etc) send their recruiting teams out to meet prospective employees looking to come back to the West Michigan area.

In addition, we offer FREE headshots for anyone that attends! We know attendees are looking for new or more meaningful work, so why not give them a chance to update their LinkedIn profile while attending a networking event.

We refer to this service as our “Headshot Studio” and perhaps it’s just what your next networking event needs to bring more value to attendees.

So what’s the lesson learned from Hello West Michigan’s example?

Even though your organization has a small photo budget, when utilized properly, that budget can bring a tremendous value to your organization, membership, donors and the people you serve.

If you’ve had the thought, “I really would like to have a photographer at our upcoming event…”, then we would love to speak to you.

No obligation, no expectation.

Let us provide you value before you say “YES” to using our services.

We have been helping some of our clients for 10+ years. We seek to bring value and that’s why they have us back year after year. Perhaps it’s time for your organization to experience the same.

We Are Here To Make You Look Great And Help You Be More Successful. If You're In Need Of A Photographer You Can Trust To Make You Look And Feel Confident, We Would Love To Connect With You.