Personal branding photography isn’t really a NEW thing. People have been hiring photographers to take professional photos of them ever since photography was invented.
But online marketing is changing the way people are photographed. Historically, a good headshot every five years or so was all you needed. As long as you looked somewhat like the photo next to you in the yellow pages or newspaper ad you were good to go.
But times have DEFINITELY changed. Today, every business has a website (or they’re basically obsolete, let’s face it), and most also have a social media presence across countless platforms where they are encouraged to connect with audiences on a regular basis.
And how to people connect to other people? By being seen!
People are MUCH more likely to connect to a brand when they KNOW who is behind it. I mean, REALLY know. Mere recognition is no longer enough. Your clients want to establish that “know, like, trust” factor with a business before they hand over their hard-earned cash.
Business is personal these days. People brand themselves rather than a cutesy name, because they know it WORKS. My brand is not Personal Branding Photography. Or even International Personal Branding Photography. It’s Heidi Hapanowicz Photography. People want ME! (Aww, that feels so warm and fuzzy, doesn’t it?)
But it’s true.
So what do these entrepreneurs need from you? On the outside, they need great photos to help them look good online. Yes. But do you know what they REALLY need?
To feel comfortable in their own skin. Most people HATE being photographed. They feel uncomfortable. They don’t know how to move or what to wear. They get nervous. If you can make them feel comfortable from your very first interaction, they’ll follow you to the ends of the earth. (Seriously!)
To be taken care of. It doesn’t take much to create a high-class experience for your clients. But you definitely want to automate the process! By creating templates and even offering some tips and training beforehand, your clients will feel like they are in good hands.
To create a BRAND, not just take a good headshot. There is so much more to personal branding photography than a headshot. You’ve got to get to know their BRAND’s personality as much as their OWN personality. It’s a blend of art and science. Let your intuition guide you, but do your homework so that you know what direction the brand needs to go.
To self-actualize. What strengths do you see in your clients? Let them know! Where do you see them shine? Accentuate it for them. Knowing that you’re in their cheering section can mean all the world to someone who sometimes struggles with putting themself out there.
I love what I do. You, too, can build a photography business YOU love!