Aerial Photography Wales production company based in South Wales that specializes in aerial photography and filming. In October, Aerial Photography was recognised among the winners of the 2018 SME Welsh Enterprise Awards with the title of ‘Best in Promotional Aerial Photography’. We were eager to speak to the company’s Founding Director, Dave Powell, to find out how they stay ahead of the crowd in an emerging sector.
Drone technology has revolutionised a plethora of industries, from online retail and logistics, to agriculture and meteorology, with the promise of further innovations to come. It is, by all regards, an emerging technology in its infancy, with more developments set to continue for the foreseeable future. One of the most often-utilised uses of drone technology has arrived in the form of aerial photography, offering an entirely new perspective for those with the entrepreneurial spirit to capitalise on it.
Aerial Photography Wales is one such business, providing breath-taking photography and footage for their clients. Dave takes a moment to go into detail about Aerial Photography’s team and clients, “We are now a team of seven; two pilots, two editors, and a sales and marketing team. Our most well-known customers are TV channels: BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5, but we have worked for many large organizations around the UK. We also supply film and photography to the construction industry, property developers, estate agents, SMEs and many local authorities.”
The conversation soon turns to the subject of competitors. Naturally, emerging technologies create a gap in the market that many hope to take advantage of, whether they be industry newcomers or established veterans. Aerial Photography can be defined as the latter, with years of experience in film and photography, as Dave explains. “We pride ourselves in the fact that before we were flying drones, we built up decades of experience in the film and photography arena. We then moved into the unmanned aircraft industry and now have cameras that can fly. There are many, many aerial companies starting up every week, but a huge majority are new to the media industry and many have never even sold a photograph. We are creatives first and the drones are the latest tools we use to capture images.”
Dave continues, “With a host of new operators appearing every month there are a lot of ‘budget’ drone companies and it is virtually impossible to compete with them on price. We have realised that the only way to create a successful business in the industry is to offer the very best quality images and service. Our customer retention is excellent, and we believe it’s because of the premium service we offer.”
Ultimately, this plays into Aerial Photography Wales’s mission: simply, to provide best in class services to their clientele. “We have always strived to be the premiere aerial photography and filming company in Wales and we are now aiming to be the best in the UK. We have realised that to do this it’s not just pressing a shutter button. Our customer service, social media presence, key account management and quality of delivery has to be excellent.”
Moreover, the company culture is singularly spearheaded by a passion for their work, which drives their ambition as they fight to remain at the very cutting edge of the sector. “We’re a young company and we’re all massively interested in the technology we use to capture the images. Yes, we’re total geeks and are always researching the latest equipment on the market. New cameras don’t necessarily create better images but if we can gain some advantage by using technology that other companies aren’t then we’re always willing to experiment.”
Drone technology continues to evolve and adapt as it finds new avenues for growth. Equally, the photography sector continues to mature, as regulation and best practices race to catch up. “The industry is definitely becoming more professional with lots of operators now obtaining the Permit for Aerial Work from the CAA. Up until now there were a lot of pilots operating illegally, but people are becoming more aware of the regulations surrounding drone use. This is great news as the industry has a less than ideal reputation in the press with dangerous drone flights being reported on a weekly basis.”
In his closing comments, Dave discusses Aerial Photography Wales’s future, as they look to expand into new markets: “We are now looking to expand the business and cover the whole of the UK and Europe. We are speaking with pilots all over the country and have set up a network to enable us to become the largest drone operator in the UK.”
Company: Aerial Photography Wales
Telephone: 029 2252 0103