Are you ready for a brand photo shoot? How can you know when it's time to invest in your own photos?
So, you’ve been in business for a while and things are going okay. There's money in your account, and inquiries coming in, but you are ready for some growth.
You're playing the social media gamer but it feels a little like you are treading water always trying to stay on top of it all, but, let's be real, it's hard to stay on top of it all.
And worst of the worst, it feels like too many inquiries go quiet after a couple of emails back and forth. Potential clients getting your prices and then ghosting.
No one likes to be price shopped and then rejected.
Rejection. It’s so tough and it’s super hard not to take it personally right? I've struggled with this so much in my career!
The thing is, rejection is part and parcel of being a business owner. Taking a breath and just rolling with it when people ghost you after a couple emails, or when you get the “I’m going another direction because I found what I needed within my lower budget.”
As a wedding photographer, I used to take those so personally. At the beginning, I just didn’t get why people didn’t see my awesomeness. It’s not just awesome photos, it would be the full experience that I give that they are missing out on right? But then I realized, they were responding to just the price because I gave them nothing else to connect to. I was giving no info to them other than some pretty photos and some pricing. Leaving me open to that horrible situation of being price shopped then dropped.
It was the worst.
So, in my constant desire to tweak what I was doing and see what changes stuck and got people interested and seeing me as Becca, and not photographer #1293 that they’ve looked at since getting married, I started putting my face out there. I started to give them something to connect to.
Started telling people who I am and WHY I do this.
Why I care about weddings, and relationships and THEM.
Why they will want to invest their hard-earned money into me. I started to show photos of me, headshots, silly shots, behind the scenes shots. All those moments that brought together what it was like to work with me and then they started to connect.
No longer am I photographer #1293. I Becca to them.
The silly fart joke sharing, lay on the floor for the best shot, will always share my Oreos and help you be at ease in front of the camera photographer that they’d enjoy having by their side. And not only that, but they’d also get some pretty awesome photos from their wedding too! How could they not hire me?
That, is the power of showing who you are and what you do. It’ differentiates you from #alltheothers
So how can you tell when you are ready for branding photos? Here’s my easy checklist
1) You are in business.
Yes it really is that simple. If you have a website and a social media feed to stay on top of, you should be putting your best foot forward, and we all know that the iPhone photo you snapped that uploaded willy nilly isn’t putting your best foot forward.
2) You're super tired of being price shopped
You are ready for people to hire you because of their connection to you and not just your pricing.
You want people to connect with you and hire you because they know/like/trust what you have to offer, and not just because the price was right?
3) You are ready to capture peoples attention and have them automatically think "ooh I need this!"
Product based businesses, people are accustomed to seeing the products they want lit and photographed well. While they may not realize they are reacting to the quality of the photo, people will think less of the quality of your product if it’s displayed (the photograph) poorly. They associate the low-quality image with your product also being low quality. So, product-based businesses IMO are ones that it’s super duper important to showcase your product in an enticing way that makes people want to buy.
But is it all about the product? No! Especially for the small shops who say make homemade soaps and sell them locally, part of the charm is homemade and handmade, so don’t you think they want to see the home the soap is made, and the hands that make it? Behind the scenes, images are super powerful as they create emotion and connection. It’s no longer just soap, it’s that special soap made my Judy in her kitchen using the techniques she’s personally tested and tweaked as her business has grown.
Lot’s of things that pique people’s interest and in return gets them emotionally invested in you. Price becomes less of a barrier when you get someone emotionally invested.
4) If you have a service based business, who you are and why you do it is even more important if you want to stop being price-shopped.
Your client is going to be working with you and your team personally. Don’t you think they will want to know what you as a person is about and not just the pretty thing you do for them? For example, if you are a florist, tell them your history, show them why you love creating these beautiful arrangements, what the flowers remind you of from your life? What inspires you and how will you make the arrangements different and amazing and to their wants and needs? Show who you are and why you do this, and people will connect with you as a person and want to work with you! And even better, they become invested in you, and when you wow them with your services and customer service, they will want to share with their friends and family how amazing you are. Then you’ve begun a word of mouth referral train which is a beautiful thing to have in your business!
5) You use images in your company at all.
For example, if you have Instagram, then you will benefit from having a branding photo shoot as it will give you an instant archive of beautiful images to pull from to share and share again with your audience!
Honestly, the earlier you start your collection of awesome images that tell your story and share who you are with your world, the more people will connect and your business will grow!
It’s never too early to get consistent with what you are showing clients and give them a reason to connect with you!
So I’ll guess that you’ve been nodding along to these past 5 points. Seeing the value of how great images and great images that speak directly to your ideal client will be great, but, as all things in business and life, it comes down to the investment.
Especially if you are just starting out, you may wonder how can you afford something like branding photos when money is tight?
I get it. It’s hard to invest in the business when the business may or may not be adding a whole lot to your bank account yet. It’s a struggle, I know, and that’s why, for example, I offer monthly payments for an entire year on branding photo packages. It’s always easier to break it up monthly it bite size payments than go through and pay in bulk!
So, what do you think. Have you brainstormed what you’d like to show for your branding session yet? I’ll be blogging soon about ideas for your own branding session! And until then, go grab our awesome Brand Planning Guide which is a totally free resource that walks you through solidifying all your branding decisions to that you can stay consistent in what you show your customers!