When everyone has a camera, why would they go to a professional photographer?
This was one of the first questions people asked me when I was setting up my male photo studio.
There are many reasons I believe that guys will consider going to a professional photography studio, including the following:
1. Anyone can do most things in life, but they often choose to hire someone who does the task on a regular basis (eg. walk a dog, clean their house, change their oil, cook a meal, paint a room, etc. They either don't have time to do the job how they want it done or they determine that a professional can do it better. Unlike hiring someone to clean, creating an unique and high quality photograph of yourself is a much more personalized and creative effort. This makes the hiring of a professional even more important and is closer to how we might choose someone to style our hair or provide a massage (both more personal services).
2. The experience of a studio shoot is much different than shooting at home. The guy feels like a professional model and with the addition of pro level lighting and camera equipment being used in a well designed studio environment, there is a real difference to how the "model" feels and therefore, how they appear in the photographs.
3. The image quality is different. Compare a studio shot with a typical selfie or home shot. While you can do great work at home and some of the best images are candid or done with a simple camera/phone, people are often unable to produce an image that has the same impact as one shot by a professional photographer using pro lenses and lighting. A studio photographer has spent a lot of time in this environment and has practiced many poses and lighting techniques and can help the model produce a shot that meets their expectations.
This expertise would also include ideas for posing individuals to obtain the most flattering results. If someone is celebrating a milestone (such as a birthday or anniversary), they are likely to cherish an image that they can look back on for the rest of their life.
4. People buy unique experiences. In a consumer world where retail experiences have become very routine and standard, people gravitate toward something that is truly unique and provides an experience that lives on way past the actual event (in this case, the memories and the images can last a lifetime).
5. Social networking demands higher quality images for personal (dating) or professional needs (LinkedIn), We can more easily share images and people respond to higher quality images and everyone want to present themselves in the best light possible.
6. Sometimes a guy wants images that he just can't do himself. This could be a backside portrait or some other pose that is hard to do by oneself. While a friend can always be asked to take a photo, they want results that will make them look as great as possible from all directions.
Overall, I believe and have seen how people respond to a studio shoot. They almost always love the experience and find some images they are glad they have and can possibly share with others after the shoot.