Being a wedding photographer, it is no surprise that I LOVE to talk all things weddings. But did you know that my other favourite work-hat to wear, is that of a creative entrepreneur?
I have been running my photography business full-time for the past five years, and prior to that I ran it as a side-hustle to my busy corporate job. Nowadays I nerd-out over small business, podcasts, business growth, personal branding, marketing the lot, I love it!
Any time I hear about a new tip for running a successful small business, I am there. And if you were to take a peek at the ‘notes’ app on my phone, you’d see 101 new business ideas bursting for attention! Safe to say, small business is my jam.
I have learnt so much over the past five years about running a successful small business, and — as always — if I’ve learnt something I think is worth knowing, I want to share it here with you.
As such today’s blog post is about two of the most basic but pivotal things for your small business: branding and professional photography.
Let’s dive in!
How to go about branding your small business
As Fiona Humberstone, founder of The Brand Stylist shares:
Design has the power to change how people view your business and value your work.
I couldn’t agree more!
Great branding sets the tone for your business. A well thought-out visual presence, lays the groundwork for an equally high-quality experience with you.
Conversely if your logo, photographs and font look sloppy, who’s to say that your work won’t be equally so?
IMHO this comes into play even more so when you work in a creative field. As a wedding photographer my ‘product’ is visual. Therefore in order to attract the type of clients who align with my style of photography, I need to ensure that my branding is reflective of it.
For example, if you peruse my wedding gallery you’ll see that my photography style is light, crisp and romantic. With this in mind, when it came to commissioning a designer to elevate my branding, I wanted my style of photography to be reflected.
I hope you’ll agree that my branding designer Cathy absolutely achieved that! From the elegant sans-serif font in my text, through to the romantic hand-written design of my logo — my branding now reflects who I am as a photographer.
This in turn communicates my style, values and professionalism to my clients. Thank you to Cathy of The Bespoke Brand Designer for my dream branding!
So the question is, do you need to invest in professional branding?
In my opinion, it’s an emphatic “yes”!
Professional branding helps to connect you with your dream clients. Great branding should reflect you as a business, your values, and in turn the quality you will offer your clients. Though it is an investment, great branding should last you a long time — 3 – 5 years. If not more.
That being said, I understand the need to watch the bottom line, especially when you are just starting out as a small business owner. If you are curious to learn more about branding, I suggest checking out the resources below, which offer a great springboard to build your branding knowledge up from!
Branding resources for you
The Brand Stylist Books
Jenna Kutcher’s blog (and everything else)
The Bespoke Brand Designer Client Questionnaire
Where does professional photography come in?
Here’s where I get excited! Where a brand designer develops all of the elements for your brand identity — logo, colours, fonts etc — your brand photography is where I come in.
There are a number of areas within your business, which you may need professional photography for.
Including the below:
- photos of you
- photos of your team
- photos of your work environment/desk space/studio
- stock images which can be used on social media
- images which can be used for blog posts
- images which can be used for digital products/downloads/e-books
- e-commerce photos
It’s a lot right?! Here’s the thing . . .
Professional photography goes hand in hand with professional branding.
There’s little point in investing in a beautiful new website, if you’re not going to fill it with photos which share your products and/or services in their best light.
Let’s take Lord Home, an organic soy candle brand — and favourite client of mine! — for example. Tom and Jamie, Lord Home’s co-founders, decided to invest in quality photography from the get-go.
Though Lord Home is a new brand (under a year old) they’ve already garnered a loyal customer base, secured wholesale stockists and over 1,000 followers on Instagram!
Yes, the products are fantastic (I regularly have their delicious scents burning in my office) but what sets Lord Home apart when you can’t see or smell the candles IRL, is the imagery.
Lord Home’s story is being woven visually for their customers.
Have a scroll through their Instagram @LordHomeUK to see what I mean!
Once you have invested in great photography, you’ll have a bank of images you can be proud of to call upon when opportunities like magazine interviews crop up.
Or when your wholesale stockists need images for their sites.
Not to mention how easily you’ll be able to plug in your social media content, knowing that it looks exactly how you want it to!
Safe to say that branding and professional photography are two areas of running a small business which I feel are WELL worth exploring and investing in.
I truly believe that one of the reasons I regularly secure dreams clients — both wedding and small business — is because I took the plunge on my own branding and professional photography.
Yes even professional photographers need professional photography 😉
So tell me, are you a small business owner thinking of elevating your brand? Do you need new photographs of yourself and your products?
If you’ve answered yes, I can help. My photography packages allow you to ‘exhale’ when it comes to getting great photos of you and/or your products. I’ve worked with dozens of small businesses to help them to create imagery which best represents them, their services and products.
Explore my personal branding photography services here and portfolio here. I’d love to hear from you and nerd-out some more!