Time has been even more valuable recently, and it can become quite hard to carve out any time for you and your business. Visual content is very time consuming to create, so leveraging the activities you chose to do, can pay off in the long run. After having carried out personal branding sessions for small businesses, I love to see how much the visuals are used on their websites, online, and on social media. A well prepared for personal branding shoot should leave you with a whole selection of brand relevant images which you have at your finger tips moving forward. So if it's something you've been thinking about through the past few months, here are a few top tips on what type of things to start thinking about in advance of booking a session so you can ensure you capture the images you would want for you and your brand.
TIP 1 - MOOD BOARD CREATION
First tip I would always give is to create some type of mood board. This really is the best activity to start with as it pulls together everything about your business, your brand and you, in one visual place. Whether it be a physical mood board, or one you create on Pinterest, it really doesn’t matter as long as you have somewhere that is easy to use, and collate images in.
Try to think about how you would like you and your brand to come across in your shoot, and chose images that align to that feel.
Things to consider when creating your mood board. Colourways (try to limit to 3-5 main colours to ensure brand consistency), poses you may like from Pinterest inspiration, working shots, lighting (light and bright, dark and more moody) accessories and props, product shots, locations, backdrops, outfits.
It’s also important to consider at this point, what are you trying to achieve with this shoot? Are you wanting to personally connect more to potential clients, launch a new product or service offering, or maybe you’re re branding and want to ensure your future images are consistent with that new brand feel. Whatever the reason, make sure you recognise what you would like these images to do for you.
TIP 2 - PROPS
Using your mood board, give some thought to the props you would like to use in your shoot and how they could help with telling your story…This is your chance to grab all of your favourite things together and have them all captured. I would tend to separate these items into two -
- Practical - items you use for working, ranging from laptops, phones, maybe paints, markers if you’re crafty, photography equipment, mugs for hot drinks.
- Inspirational - Here I would include things that inspire you for your work and fit with the feel or your brand. Maybe books relating to your industry, colour inspo, patterns, fabrics, flowers, plants, cute props in brand colours.
Props really help you to communicate with your ideal client, and help people get to know your real personality and what you're about!
TIP 3 - CLOTHING
The outfits that you wear for your brand images will have a big impact of the look of your visuals, so give careful thought to how you would like to come across. It sometimes helps to think about key words you would you use to describe the feel of your brand and your style. Whether it be casual/ classic/ chic/ creative/ natural/sporty you get the idea… and chose outfits that fit with that style. Depending on location, I normally suggest having at least two outfits to hand so we give more variety to your shots, and enable you to communicate different stories through your images.
I also can’t stress enough, chose something that you feel comfortable in. Wearing something that isn’t you will come across in the shots.
TIP 4 - LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION
This has a huge impact on your brand images and effects the kind of tone you communicate. So if you have a light and airy brand, try to avoid picking somewhere that is dark and moody. A location with plenty of natural light is often best to get the best shots. Below are a few ideas to start you thinking -
- High Streets – café & restaurants, hotels, florists
- Urban environment - in town, busy streets, graffiti walls
- Working spaces - Home office, studios, workshops
- Home - relaxing time in kitchen, living room, study
- Natural spaces - gardens, woodlands, riverside, beaches
TIP 5 - SHOTS LIST
Put together a must have list of shots which you would then have to share with a photographer. This should be a comprehensive list of all the shots you would need for your business moving forward. Each business is so very different to the next and this helps you get you everything that you need personally for your brand. Some ideas to consider:
- About me image. Decide whether you just want relaxed lifestyle shots, or whether you may also need more corporate like images.
- Your brand colours. How they can be brought in visually via props, backdrops, products.
- Behind the scenes shots.
- Working. Overhead desk shots, working on laptop.
- Show your creative process. Compiling creating inspiration, making products.
- Packing up products
- If you’re in a service industry it’s great to orchestrate where possible images of you carrying out your service.
- Product shots
- Logo shots
Try to think through every step of your business process and make sure you have images listed to cover all of them.
So I think that’s you ready to go. If you have followed through each tip above, you will be in a very good place to start thinking about having some personal branding shots taken for you and your business.