Office Santa's... Is there a big market for this?


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Sep 18, 2015
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Hey guys, first off let me say that yes I am a beginner but I've managed to actually find a photographer to help out at his weddings shoots, even letting me be his second shooter with his gear of course. It's been great so far, learning a lot about the technical side of shooting and the business side.
However, the wedding season is winding down and he wants to expand the business a bit. The photographer is not too adept at working with the computer/internet, and thus asked me to research something for him. Office Santa Shoots. Is there a big market for this? What sort of sized companies would hire a photographer to come in and set up a Santa set, with an actual Santa and take pictures for an hour or two. He does these kind of shoots with certain bank branches in our area, but wants to expand further.
It's one thing if he asked me to put up his name and advertise on the internet for him but to find companies that are in need of this, well I'm not bad with computers and such but I wouldn't know where to start to find this kind of information out. I appreciate any and all help, as well as input from any professionals that have done and or do these shoots currently.

Thanks everyone!!
What exactly is an "office Santa"? I've worked for major corporations for most of my life and have never heard of such a thing. Holiday office parties tend to occur either at the office the day before a holiday or holiday break, or for larger parties they might be held at an offsite location, usually on a weekend, and often a week or two before a holiday break. But in all my years, I've never seen a "Santa" at any of these. Maybe I work for the wrong companies. :-/

In any case, I'm thinking the work for this sort of thing might be a bit thin.

There are some families who want to round up the family and get a holiday family portrait made. Sometimes these portraits are used to produce holiday greeting cards. But I've noticed that given the nature of families to just talk on Facebook, the number of people willing to send out holiday greeting cards seems to be somewhat reduced.
We've had office Santas before where I work, but it's always just one of our employees who volunteers to dress up as Santa during our office party. One year, I did do a photo shoot of anyone who wanted to have their pictures made with "Santa," and I was really surprised at how many people LOVED it. It ended up being a full spread in the next year's calendar.

But, would a company PAY a photographer for this sort of shoot? That, I don't know. I know WE wouldn't, but that's because we have ME. :D

I worked for a pretty good-sized publishing company, back a lifetime ago. They were full of young creatives, and we had some...uh..."interesting" after-hours parties. I could see THEM paying for an Office Santa photoshoot. Which might also explain why they went out of business...we threw a LOT of money at a lot of crazy stuff... :D

I'd say you're going to be hard-pressed to find companies who want this, without just putting it out there and seeing if there are any takers. Market it on FB, maybe do a practice shoot with some volunteers so you have some photos to post with the marketing offer. Make flyers and start mailing or otherwise delivering them to all the companies in your area. I'd focus on companies that are:
1. Large enough to make it worth paying for something like that. A company with 10 employees isn't likely to be willing to pay for a photoshoot for them.
2. At least a tiny bit on the quirky, creative side. Of course, the problem you have there, is that creative companies also tend to often have people internally who do photography, and they'd just get THEM to do a shoot like this.
Yeah we used to have a Santa, for kids...!! lol

You could try American Society of Media Photographers or PPA although a lot of their info. is likely more geared to the US market - but you might find some marketing info.

Santa on a Zamboni I've taken pictures of, but this, I don't know... Are there any holiday events coming up in your area that might provide an opportunity for you to market the idea? I suppose at the very least there would be the cost of hiring a Santa, and having to keep track of who's who in each picture with Santa.

Maybe if you find one opportunity where there's interest in this and see how it goes this holiday season, then build from there to further promote it next year. Seems like it'd be chancy to offer this and find out there's not enough interest to make it worth the cost and trouble of figuring out how/where to set it up.

Would there be any potential contacts thru the ones done in the past? Do the banks have any business customers who might be interested? I don't know if the banks would promote anything with their customers or not. Maybe you'd have to start looking up businesses in your area to see if any seem like a possibility to contact.
But, would a company PAY a photographer for this sort of shoot? That, I don't know. I know WE wouldn't, but that's because we have ME. :D


probably not, Santa pics are for malls
I can see the sexual harassment cases now...
Lol thanks guys for all the feedback. It seemed like a stretch from the get go. Searching for this sort of service in and around my area yielded the same results every time, photographers offering personal Santa shoots in their studio for kids/family. Nothing for the office party setting, but regardless my photographer has done it in the past, also has all the costumes and backgrounds and props for it, I suppose word of mouth will be the best strategy, stemming from his contacts in the bank. Thanks again guys, I just wanted to see if people would be as surprised as I thought they would be with this, now I'm sure there is very small market, if any for this

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