Happy Friday team! I’m really excited for Friday Chatter to be a regular thing again, and today, I’m diving into a BRAND NEW topic with you! What’s that?! Branding photography!!!! I launched the branding portion of my business back in February, and then a little thing called COVID-19 came along and changed a lot of things for all of us. I put branding content on hold for a little while, and now I’m FULLY ready to dive deep into sharing ALL the exciting things about branding photography with you.
For those that may be new to this term, to me, branding photography is basically photography that tells the story of a brand! For us creative entrepreneurs, our brands are oftentimes super dynamic, including our craft, what we do in our free time, our favorite people and pets, and so much more! Branding sessions are a little more than just pretty headshots… they’re intentionally designed sessions to help you create and curate content to share who you are as a brand (and for many, as a person and business owner!).
Branding sessions are designed to help you fill, not only your content calendar but your website and other forms of marketing with intentional content designed to tell a pre-determined story or to convey a certain feel. Now that we know a little more about the WHAT behind branding sessions and branding photography, I’m excited to share a few reasons WHY you may find yourself needing a branding session… more importantly, we’re chatting about a few key reasons and telltale signs that may indicate you’re in need of refreshed brand images! Shall we dive in?!
A significant amount of time has passed since you were in front of the camera last
I want you to think about the last time you were in front of the camera for your business or brand! (OR the last time you had product photos taken!) Was it last year? Last month? Last week? A few years ago? A few months ago? Pull out calendar and hunt for that appointment date! However long the amount of time is that has passed, we’ll have to do a little bit of intentional thinking. I could give you a number of months or weeks or years that I would recommend to have between branding sessions, but the truth is, every business and brand does things a little differently, and every photographer runs sessions a little differently. The most important thing I want you to recognize here is that YOU have to define what a significant amount of time is for you.
Here are few questions that you can ask yourself to help decide if a significant amount of time may have lapsed since your last content prep session!
- Have there been significant changes in you or your business?
- New hair color? New city? New pet? New family member? New products? New offerings? New brand colors? New website? It may be time to update those photos!
- Are you running low on content that matches your feed or esthetic?
- Feeling like you’re getting close to using all of your favorite brand images? You may need new photos!
- Are you scrambling to pull or create content for your brand?
- This is the most important one of all! Brand images should allow you to plan content in advance OR should act as a supplement to fill predesignated spots within your brand materials (For example, the header on a website, a staple image in a blog post, or something fun on your about me page!). They should help relieve stress and should allow you to pre-plan content. If you feel a bit like you’re scrambling to create content, scheduling posts at the last minute, or are finding yourself creating something to post on social media the next day or the next week, you may want to consider a branding session!
Change in seasons
This one can apply to a number of things, so get a little out of the box with me here. This could very literally apply to the change in seasons from summer to fall to winter to spring (as well as specific holiday seasons), but could also apply to changes in seasons of business or life. When it comes to seasonal changes, I’m most specifically referring to changes in attire, vibe, or products. It wouldn’t make much sense to post a photo with a pumpkin on July 4th, right? This could also apply to changes in your personal season. If you run a personal brand (more on that here!) and there are large shifts in your life that you would like to share about within your business or brand, it makes no sense to continue to share an overabundance of content that doesn’t reflect the shift. Get my point? Your photos should feel like YOU! It is important that your brand is evolving and growing over time and that your branding images mirror this.
A note here: be sure that you’re planning seasonal content ahead of time so you’re not feeling rushed in the future to create content. An example? If you book a branding session for the middle of the spring, I recommend having the session designed and curated to reflect your needs for the summer or beyond!
You are planning a launch
YAY!! I am SO excited that you are planning on launching something near and dear to your heart and business! Note that the launch category could include some (or any!!) of the following: you’re launching a new website, blog, service, product, workshop or course, podcast, book, social media profile, recipe, or ANYTHING in between. With launches comes SHARING the work you’ve put in with the world, and with that comes the need for content! Maybe you need a few filler images for your website, or maybe you need some photos of the pretty products you’ve created… either way, if you are planning on launching something, it’s important that you have the content to back it up to make sharing your hard work with the world a breeze!
You’ve never been in front of the camera
If you’ve NEVER had brand headshots or branding images taken, I first want to let you know that this is totally normal and is absolutely NOTHING to be ashamed about. That said, it is important that you consider getting in front of the camera soon! Whether you’re just starting out or you’ve been in the game for years, it is so important that you’re able to share professional images that best tell your story. If you’ve never been in front of the camera before, I want to ask yourself why! And then the scary part? Do something about it!
If you’re nervous about being in front of the camera, know that this is completely normal! If you’re not sure about what to do for outfits, reach out to your photographer. If you’re afraid that you’re not going to get the images you need to tell your story, start making a content plan for the upcoming quarter or the quarter you plan to cover in your branding session. If the financial commitment is a lot (know that I fully understand this!), consider calculating your return on investment. How much could fresh and updated brand images pour back into your biz?! I want you to avoid letting fear hold you back from helping your brand shine… us brand photographers want to help you live your best-branded life. More than that? We LOVE helping you live your best-branded life… lean into us, ask questions, dig deep into what makes you, you and your brand, your brand.
Bonus: Content planning is feeling a bit blah
I feel like I may be the only one that can relate to this, but I felt like I should include it as a bonus! I’m not sure if it is all of the changes in my industries, the heaviness in our world, or the fact that it’s been a while since I’ve taken brand photos myself, but to be honest, I feel like my content planning could use a little zhuzh. If your content planning is feeling a little blah, or more importantly, not like you or your brand story, take the step to make some changes! Getting in front of the camera can be an investment of time and money, but it really is worth it! If content planning is feeling a little blah or unlike you, it may be time to step in front of the camera!
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