I recently did a training with a handful of my agents on digital camera use. It is my opinion and the opinion of a lot of other real estate professionals that good listing photos demonstrate professionalism.
The training worked out great. Agents were excited to bring their personal cameras into the office so that the tech guy (me) can actually show them how to use them. After a morning of shooting dozens of photos of a listing we had close to the office we came back to the office to see what we had.
The second part of the training was organizing and getting the photos ready for use. Enter Picasa! Probably not a big secret at this point but if you haven't heard or used this free software, you should download it immediately.
One of the biggest challenges for me was make the agents understand resolution and how it relates to image size and document weight. This is important for agents to learn because of the many different uses of the image and the size requirements of each. For example, a set of listing photos can be used by as many as 15 different magazines, directories websites and MLSes. If these requirements are ignored, the end result is usually a bad photo.
The good news is we got through it and Picasa made it easy. Along with there personal digital cameras, I had the agent bring in their laptops and download Picasa FOR FREE. At this point I did not see many alternatives. I could try to train the agents on how to use the image editing software that came with the camera . . . NOT. Too many different types of software is out there and the quality of the software is usually inferior to Picasa. I could go with an Adobe product, after all, the quality would definately be there . . . DOUBLE NOT. The complexities of the Adobe product went well beyond that which is needed for simple real estate photos and besides, Picasa is free. That is why it ended up being the perfect solution for managing and editing real estate photos.
The agents that I trained are really into it now. They are shooting and editing like a pro. I will come back and post some before and afters.