What is a personal brand shoot and how can it help your business?
What’s a personal brand shoot?
Ok, firstly, your personal brand is YOU.
You are the brand and so your personal brand photo shoot is essentially a collection of photos of you that you can use professionally to communicate who you are and what you’re about.
Why is this important?
Did you know that photos with faces receive 38% more likes on Instagram? (Sprout social.)
You have just 3 seconds to grab the attention of a new potential client before they scroll on…
Photography can communicate in seconds who you are, what you do, and where you sell – and most of all, make people want to buy into your brand!
Why it was one of my first big investments
Knowing how important personal brand is for a solopreneur, I knew this was something I had to invest in early on.
This was one of the first big expenses in setting up my new business, but it wasn’t so much an expense as an amazing investment – in myself and my business.
I wanted people to land on my Instagram feed and website and see something professional. See that I had invested in myself and see that I’m worth investing in too.
I’ve had so many lovely compliments about my brand photography and comments from potential clients who know what I’m about just from scrolling through my Instagram feed. I’m SO pleased with how they turned out.
I say “turned out”, that’s probably the wrong phrase, as it wasn’t by accident – there was a bit of planning and an awesome photographer involved!
Is this for you and how do you make the most of this investment?
If you’re wondering if you should invest in some brand photography, I say it’s one of the best things you can spend your money on. But make sure you plan your shoot correctly to get the most out of it.
I’ve teamed up with the awesome Stephanie Green, award-winning Wedding & Portrait Photographer, to give you our top tips for getting incredible photos to help elevate your personal brand…
- Be clear on your branding
Sometimes this gets a bit overlooked if you have a personal brand, but it’s still important for consistency. Consistency builds trust. To get the most from this exercise, you should have a defined colour palette and mood board.
See example brand board for Hummingbird Finance that was used to help style her brand shoot:
- Get some inspiration
Pinterest is literally made for this. Set up a board and start saving all of the photography styles you like.
Try and stick to a similar theme and style as, practically speaking, you’re not going to have a massive photoshoot and – you’ve guessed it – it’s about consistency.
- Find a good photographer
There are so many great photographers on Instagram.
Just search #personalbrandingphotographer and add your location too.
You need to make sure you ‘click’ with them too, because if you don’t get on with your photographer, it’s likely this will come across in the photos.
Have a consultation call to check you’re on the same wavelength and send them your branding and Pinterest vision boards.
Explain your target market, business goals and general content plans, because you want your photos to work hard for you.
- Plan your outfits and shots carefully
Plan these based on the type of message and vibe you want to convey.
Consider your brand colours in your outfit choices, so they don’t clash.
Depending on your shoot location and agreement with your photographer, have a few outfit changes to get the most amount of content from your shoot.
- Think about how you want your clients to feel
Brainstorm the keywords of how you would like your clients to feel when visiting your platforms and receiving your services.
Do you want them to feel nurtured, welcomed or even empowered? You have seconds before your audience forms an opinion so being photographed in the way you want to be seen is important.
If you are a lawyer and would like to show your strength to make your clients feel protected and safe you could think about locations with solid lines in the backdrop and wear an outfit that represents your fierce sophistication.
But if you are going for friendly approachable vibes, say a freelance therapist, you might choose a cosy setting with soft furnishings, ambient light and nurturing open poses.
Brainstorming your keywords can help spark your ideas about what to wear, where you choose to be photographed and what poses to embody. Do not panic, your photographer can talk you through this on your initial consultation.
- Have fun and be yourself
Just have fun with it.
A good photographer will make you feel at ease very early on.
Don’t try and be someone you’re not; it won’t work and will come across in the photos. And don’t expect your photos to look exactly like your Pinterest boards – you have your own, brilliant thing going on.
- Be kind to yourself when viewing your pictures
It’s easy to let that inner voice and society’s ridiculous pressures tell you that you don’t look like a model. Remember this isn’t a modelling portfolio. Go back to your keywords, if you picked friendly, professional, cheerleader, is that the feeling you’re getting? If so, that’s great and you have aced it!
Your professional pictures for your business is not about looking like a Kardashian or for Tindr, but instead about how your clients will perceive you. Don’t let being self-conscious about XYZ hold you back from connecting and forming deeper personable relationships with your clients and growing your business. Use the mindset that your keyword feelings are the goal.
Want some help with your personal branding?
Check out my brand packages here.
And if you’re looking for a personal brand photographer, check out Stephanie’s Instagram page here, she covers London and surrounding areas.
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