Why branding photography? So many emerging entrepreneurs and corporate refugees are flooding the online business market and uttering these very words.
“Won’t selfies suffice?” Yes, for a time. And you can make them work for your Insta profile, sure.
But to really show up as an authority in your chosen field, you need to look the part. While business headshots have a stuffy feel about them and can be a bit stodgy for most online businesses, branding photos are everything you need to support your online empire.
Need photos for a website hero banner? Check. Lifestyle photos of you working? Double check. Social media profile images, images directing the gaze on your funnel pages, backgrounds for your stories, and yes, if you have a business card… that too. It’s a lot, I know.
The good news is you can accomplish ALL of that in a few hours with a good branding photographer. And if you work with a brand strategist like me ahead of time and put together a game plan for your shoot, you don’t even need to hire a photographer specializing in branding.
Any good photographer can follow a plan and give you the branding photos you need.
I found myself in this field almost by default. I came from a background of photojournalism by way of weddings. I spent my days hunting moments, watching for the interesting, the things that would intrigue the viewer. So when my business-owner friends started talking about needing more than just a headshot for their websites, my curiosity was piqued.
As it turns out, the rest of the world was also intrigued. Go ahead and google “blogs” and you might notice there’s a LOT of content out there. I somehow ended on a popular blog list and noticed myself instantly clicking off the text-heavy sites. Same for the poorly designed sites, I was outta there.
It turns out I’m right in the middle of the sought-after demographic advertisers love, so take note. Pretty images sell. Pretty images that evoke a feeling in the viewer sell REALLY well.
This is what personal branding does. It brings out the YOU in your business. It sets you up as an authority figure. And branding photography puts those two together in an incredible way.
Branding photography puts YOU upfront as an authority figure.
Back when everyone else was all about Rachel Ray, I loved the Barefoot Contessa. While I was learning to cook, I mastered a few of her dishes to the point I could make them out of thin air and impress an impromptu dinner gathering. There was something about her bright, airy, pristine kitchen that inspired me to be a better cook.
I like to take this same idea to branding photography for your business. Mix in a headshot in your natural surroundings with a few details of the work you create, the people with whom you work and a few semi-action photographs of you doing that work and it’s the perfect recipe for a great visual presence.
Define how you want to be perceived.
That’s what it’s all about, isn’t it? When your first contact with a potential client is in person, you don’t show up in yoga pants unless you’re a fitness professional. And when your first contact with a potential client is online, you need to find the photographic equivalent of that.
Is your goal a friendly, supportive space for your clients? Be friendly. Show support. And do this in every area of your web presence from copy to design to photos.
Design your photos to call in your best client.
Your visual presence is a gateway. It’s there to attract your best client and say to them, “You’re in the right place!”
And at the same time, it’s designed to turn away the clients for whom you’re not a good fit. If you’re a parenting coach who drops the f-bomb a lot, you’re probably not trying to attract the devout, religious crowd.
Use your photos to let them know. Show up like the person you’re going to be when you work with them. Give them a taste. Show what it feels like to work with you so your website and social media become the best teammate for your business.
Are you ready to take the next step in branding photography?