By Lauren Abi-Hanna
Branding is one of those elements in business that can create confusion for most and I often hear women tell me that they just don’t know where to start. I completely understand, branding is such a buzzword these days, it seems that every person who owns a business is talking about it, whether their experts in the field or not. This simply shows how important it is to have a brand story that’s unique to your brand. Using your face - showcasing the essence of YOU - is a great place to start.
Yes there’s a whole lot of work involved including logos, graphics and even photographs, but when you build a business and when you connect to an audience by simply sharing who you are then your brand is already stronger than most.
Potential clients are seeking a personal connection to your brand.
If you consistently show up as the truest version of yourself, your brand story will become one that’s easy to showcase and keep consistent. Imagine the feeling of being seen and heard by people who are your ideal clients, people who desire to work with you because they simply like the person that you are. How confident will that make you? How easy will it be to show up everyday?
Let’s take a moment and consider how this works. A potential client needs the product and/or service that you provide. After searching online, they come across your website. Within the few seconds it takes to make a great first impression, your homepage has successfully communicated what it is that you do and they realise that they’ve come to the right place. What’s their next step? In almost every case, they’ll begin to seek out a personal connection, looking for the person behind the brand.
If you’ve confidently expressed who you are across all areas of your brand, this potential client will begin to develop an emotional connection to you. You may have a service or product that others also have, but your brand story is yours alone. As we know, photographs evoke emotions. So focusing on which emotions you want to evoke in your audience is a great place to start when planning a photo shoot. How do you want your ideal clients to feel when they experience your business, and when they explore your website?
Focusing on which emotions you want to evoke in your audience is a great place to start when planning a photo shoot.
As a business owner, you know you need photos but quite often it’s the confusion about where to start that holds people back.
A successful branding photo shoot does two things:
It will capture your business and your brand, visually representing your message and what your brand represents.
It will also capture and highlight who you really are.
It’s my belief that when creating your brand story, everything else comes after you’ve been seen and heard for who you authentically are. If you can consistently show up in business, sharing with your audience your unique essence and connecting with them on a personal level you’ll create trust.
If you’re feeling confused or overwhelmed with the process of planning your photo shoot, revisit these two questions:
Why does your ideal client want to work with you?
How do you want your clients/prospects to feel when they visit your website?
It’s these emotive words that will help you create your visual branding story. These emotions can be captured in a photograph and when you place the photographs throughout your business, you will create a strong and unique brand.
But how do you tie it all together? I hear you. It’s one thing to understand what you want, but then you need to create it. This is where the experts come in. Effectively brief your photographer; it’s their job to bring your vision to life. Once you’re clear on the specifics of your brand, find a photographer that has experience working with entrepreneurs. You’ll find that these photographers know what to look for and how to position you to get the most useable images for an online business. It’s really important to share with your photographer, the message of your brand and the elements of your personality that you want to showcase within your business. When you can clearly communicate this to a photographer who gets it, you can put all of your trust in them. This in turn will allow you to relax and enjoy the process, potentially turning something that can be quite scary and daunting into one that’s fun and enjoyable.
Effectively brief your photographer; it’s their job to bring your vision to life.
The desire to show up relaxed and excited for your photo shoot was the catalyst in the creation and design of my photo shoot planning guide. Because the main intention of a branding photo shoot is to create a brand story that’s unique to your brand. A.K.A. Showcasing the essence of YOU. The best process in order for this to happen is to identify what you want, outline your brands emotive words, share your ideas with the photographer and then simply – RELAX! This guide does all of that for you (and it's free!). Create a plan of action and then sit back and let the spontaneity of the photo shoot be a really fun experience for you.
Hint – this is when your authentic self begins to shine and this is when we capture your essence, which is all your audience wants to see.
Lauren is an intuitive portrait photographer from Sol + Co and she specialises in creating authentic imagery that captures the true essence of women entrepreneurs. Her purpose is to empower women to visually represent and portray themselves throughout their business with confidence and soul.
We all know that photographs speak a thousand words and when done well they speak loud and clear. After years of photographing many women entrepreneurs, Lauren knows exactly what’s needed in order to showcase the very best of you and your business. In order to do this for yourself, start by feeling prepared and design your very own dream photo shoot with Sol + Co’s very successful planning guide. Download for free HERE.
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