5 Things You Need To Plan Your Branding Photography Session

As more businesses realize the importance of having high-quality, professional branding photos, many entrepreneurs opt to do branding photography sessions to help establish and elevate their brands. 

At our studio, we talk about a number of different things with our clients before their session to ensure that they get the most out of their experience. Open communication and collaboration are key when it comes to creating stunning branding images!

women meditating in a barre fitness class for branding images

Branding Photography Isn’t Just for Large Businesses!

Whether you’re launching a new product or simply want to create a visual identity for your business, high-quality images capturing your brand’s essence are essential. Investing in professional photos ensures that your business stands out in a crowded market and resonates with your customers no matter what size your business currently is. 

Images are especially important for small businesses, as your time is limited as you grow your business, and you can’t wear all the hats! Photos that capture your brand’s essence can also help you stand out from competitors who may not be investing in professional images.

The goal of all of this? Engagement. People are more likely to engage with visuals, and, in the long run, that can help you make the most of your branding efforts.

See also: 6 signs you are ready to hire a brand photographer.

So what do we need to discuss before your session to ensure everything goes smoothly? Here are 5 things we go over together before every branding session…

branding photos of a barre studio team

Mission & Vision

The first thing we like to do when meeting with our clients for the first time is to get a sense of the business mission and vision.  What is your “why”? What motivated you to start this if you are an entrepreneur or small business owner? What problem/s are you looking to solve for others? What gets you excited about what you are doing?

Likewise, where do you see yourself and the business in 1 year? 3 years? 5 years? If your long-term plan is to franchise, we may want to ensure that from day one, your images are more about the business and staff than you as a person. If your vision includes expanding to a second city within the year, we may decide to go ahead and get some images of you in the new city now to get ahead of marketing it. 

Some of our clients have a very clear view of their mission and vision, but many do not. In these cases, we like to discuss where their business is right now and what they would ultimately want it to be. By having conversations with our clients and understanding the bigger picture, we can capture images that speak to your brand’s essence. By understanding where our clients are looking to grow, we can help ensure that their branding photos reflect their missions and goals in an authentic way.

image of a woman smiling at a barre class

Core Values

Once we understand your mission, we like to discuss your core values. These are the guiding principles for how you do business, and they can vary depending on the type of business you run.

For example, some core values might be to provide excellent customer service or ensure that customers feel heard and valued. Other core values might be to run a sustainable business or to give back to the community, or that your business feels inclusive to all.

Core values are essential to your business and brand, as they help to guide your decisions and actions. These core values affect the tone and feel of the photos we create, so it’s important to talk about your core values before our branding photography sessions.

If you’ve never really documented your core values, you might be surprised that doing this can help create policies and procedures aligned with your mission and goals. By discussing your core values with us before your session, we can ensure that we capture images that truly reflect the unique and authentic way you want to do business.

branding images of women in a pilates class

Identifying Top 1-3 Ideal Clients/Customers

The next thing we want to discuss before your branding photography session is identifying your ideal clients or customers.

Many businesses will say that they serve anyone and everyone, and that may be true in the general sense. However, we want to identify your 2-3 best types of clients or customers for marketing purposes. 

To determine who these types of clients/customers are, consider the two types. There are the “cheerleaders,” and then there are the “sweets.” 

The “cheerleaders” are the type of client/customer who loves your product or service so much they tell everyone about you and talk about you any chance they can. Basically, for every new cheerleader you acquire, you usually acquire 2+ more clients/customers through them. It’s like a free mini-sales team! 

The “sweets” are the types of clients/customers that bring you the highest sales, are a joy to work with and make your job easy and fun. They may not do your marketing for you like your cheerleaders, but you will be happy to work with this type of person no matter what. They are the types of clients/customers that make you fall in love with your job over and over again.

Focusing your marketing efforts on bringing in either more “cheerleaders” or more “sweets” (or both!) doesn’t mean that you aren’t going to be providing products and services to other types of clients/customers. But focusing on what you know works; it allows you to concentrate on doing the things you love the most.

Once you start to be able to identify your top 2-3 ideal clients/customers, start to think about what makes these niche groups of people different from the others.

  • Are they a certain age range? 
  • Do they tend to have kiddos? 
  • Do they drive to work? 
  • Do they listen to the radio, or are they more likely to listen to Spotify or podcasts?

Answering these questions for each type can help us create images that truly resonate with them and evoke connection. Plus, it should be able to help you focus on other marketing decisions as well, so it’s an important exercise. 

Learn more about what branding assets are and why they are important.

Branding images on side of building

Identifying Where You Will Use the Branding Images

Finally, we will also discuss how you will use the images we create before your branding photography session. With all the information we have discussed, we can help you identify your specific marketing goals for this process.

Here are a few ways you might use the branding images we create for your business.

  • Social media (Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc.)
  • On your website
  • For keynote presentations
  • Newsletters
  • Business cards and mailers
  • Car wraps for vehicles

Each of these requires different formatting of the final images for the platform of your choice, so it’s important to identify them before we start shooting. For example, you don’t want to have only vertical images if you plan to use one as a banner heading on your website.

gym owner leading barre class for branding photos

Let’s Partner Together To Create Outstanding Branding Photos

Once we have all the information from above; we can finally put together a shot list and create images that best suit your needs and help you achieve your goals.

Whether you’re just starting out with a new business or want to update your current brand photos, our goal is to partner with you to create branding images that truly reflect your unique brand and mission.

This holistic approach of identifying these things is the key to creating meaningful, authentic marketing materials for your business. We take the time to understand what makes you and your business tick, so we can help you achieve your goals.

Are you ready to talk more about a branding session? Schedule a preliminary call, and we can discuss how our brand photography services can help you.