Branding Photos 101
A photo is worth a thousand words, right? So, let me save you lots of typing and give you tips for an AMAZING branding photo shoot.
Identify your audience
Make a list of your audience, people who see you the most (Facebook, Instagram, YouTube followers). If you own a business, who are your customers? If you are a blogger, what is the demographic of your audience? Most social media outlets have ways to see who follows and interacts with your accounts the most. Use this help you narrow down who you are directing your brand towards. Use analytics to maximize your reach.
If you are in the process of rebranding and working to appeal to a new audience, identify that audience and keep them in mind when continuing on to the following pointers.
Dress for the job you want to have | “+1-1 Rule”
This may be the hardest part of branding photos. “But what do I wear?” I like to tell girls to use the “+1-1 Rule”. By this I mean pick the normal attire you would wear to a function for your current position you hold. If your normal work attire is trendy casual, “+1” would be dressing it up one notch, and “-1” would be dressing it down one notch.
For those who are rebranding, use the attire of the job/image you want to portray as your baseline and go from there, like a boss.
Identify images on Pinterest you want to replicate
Before I took my branding photos, I went to Pinterest and found some example photos of poses I wanted to replicate. Nothing is worse than having a camera on you and saying, “What do I do with my hands?!” Nothing is worse than not knowing what to do with your hands, right? Get ya some example photos, it will make life so much easier. Find some poses that match the “+1-1 Rule” feel that you are going for.
Pick a photographer you’re comfortable with
A part often overlooked with branding photos is the photographer. For me, I am my favorite photographer and I loooove taking pictures of myself but since I needed photos of not just my face, I needed somebody else. The second-best option is my husband, so I picked him. If you have a friend or family member, they are probably your best option (and cheapest option most likely). If you are comfortable with your photographer, your smile will be more natural and that is always lovely.
That’s easy enough, right? One thing I often see people do when taking branding photos is they try to be somebody they aren’t. You have probably seen these photos, where the girl’s makeup is overdone or their outfit doesn’t quite match who they are. Be you! It’s authentic and what people want to see. AND IT’S WAY LESS STRESSFUL. People pay attention to you because you are you! Not because they hope you will magically evolve into something you aren’t. We aren’t POKEMON!
Add some spunk and personality
Show some attitude, spunk and personality! In my photo shoots, the first half involves the serious photos and professional poses. Then comes the good part! The part where you can be yourself. Turn music on. Dance. Have fun with it. The pictures I cherish the most from my shoots are the ones where I am being me. Crazy, but me.
Behind the scenes pictures
In addition to the professional photos, take behind the scenes pictures. Add them to you Instagram story or use them as an Instagram post. I promise you, your followers will love them. When I post behind the scene content from branding photo shoots, they are my most interacted posts. Just do it.
Great branding photos can make all the difference in your brand. It will take you from a hobbyist, to people saying, “dang! She’s for real!”. It is so worth spending the extra money to get these pictures taken. We all need more tax write-offs, right?
I can’t wait to see your photos! If you need some more help or pointers, shoot me a message and I will be happy to help you CRUSH your photoshoot!