Why Brilliant Businesses Are Using Branding Photography

In Prince Edward County, we’re all about supporting local businesses, entrepreneurs and those who are working from the ground up to make their dream a reality. There’s nothing more painful for me than to go to a locals website, or social media and see a dull, run-of-the-mill portrait of the owner against a white wall with an awkward smile on their face. I know you all know what I’m talking about because this was the go-to for a very long time. Someone, somewhere convinced us that it looked professional. Wrong!

The beauty of supporting local businesses, or any business for that matter is not only receiving amazing products and services, but knowing who we’re supporting, where they came from, and the “why” behind what they do. This to me is what makes them special.

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How do you use photos of your brand in your own business?

Luckily for me, I can do as many branding sessions as I like. Since I’m a photographer, I try to do them as often as I can, sometimes monthly so that I can promote what is going on during that season, or to just get my face out there for new clients or followers. When I started my photography business I knew I wanted to focus on it being personal and intimate. I didn’t want to lose my love of photography by being all business and no play. The best thing about my initial approach is that I have made a ton of really good friends through my business, not just “clients”. I think that had a lot to do with me saying “Hey… This is who I am! This is the kind of business I’m running. I want you to get to know you because I care about the people I’m photographing. I want you to get to know me, too.” I want the first impression of me to be positive, and set the tone for the rest of our interaction.

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My business isn’t very personal or intimate. Why would I need branding photos?

I think that even if you aren’t personal with your clients for whatever reason, it’s still an amazing way, possibly the best way to market yourself. Advertising is very visual. We don’t always have the time or want to make the effort to stop and read what you’re saying, therefore you need authentic images that can tell the story for you. I know several people who use this style of photography for their brand, myself included, who have people come up to them and say “Hey! Aren’t you that * insert business title here *. I saw your photo online!”. It creates a familiar presence and friendly face that people feel like they can trust, know and like. I believe trust is the most important value in a brand. If they don’t trust you, why would they want to give you their hard earned money? I know I wouldn’t.

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Why is branding my business important?

It will always come back to trust. It doesn’t matter if you’re a big company or a small business. When you look at Wal-Mart, you know the face of the employee; friendly, in a blue vest and ready to help. You may not know the face of the CEO, but that’s not who you’re dealing with. When you look at luxury brands, it’s the same thing. Let’s look at Ralph Lauren (it’s my absolute favourite in terms of branding). Ralph, himself loves to show his and his families faces on social media and through his marketing campaigns, which creates a feeling and connection that we “know them”, therefore we trust them.

The Ralph Lauren brand is selling ‘The American Dream’; the good life, families who play polo, and own golden retrievers and have a house on the beach. Historically, there has been few families who don’t want that. So, when we see these beautiful images of the life we’re dreaming about we think “Hey… This is me. This is what I want, and I need these clothes to live that life.” - it can be a bit of a twisted mechanism, but it does make sense. You just have to be careful what you’re marketing, or what you’re being marketed.

It’s all about the connection and the endorphins. The other thing I love about Ralph Lauren is that although they are classic, they have their staples, and they know their brand perfectly (The Polo, stripes, everything preppy), they’re also modern and trendy. They are updated with what’s going on in todays world while saying “This is what the good life looks like NOW in 2019.”

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What’s the difference between branding and marketing?

Branding is saying “This is who we are”, marketing is saying “You fit in, come join us”.

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What are other benefits to branding sessions other than showing the client some personality?

Quality. Comparing the boring portrait I was talking about at the beginning of this post, to several versatile photos of yourself, your family, your client, what your job consists of, your product - what would you rather see? When you show the client that you invest in your business, it lets them know you care and makes them want to invest, too.

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Are there any businesses out there that don’t need branding photos?

Honestly, I can’t think of any. Maybe if your business is private and you don’t want to show your face, but even then there are things you need to have photographed that you can use to market your business. That’s actually a neat idea… a branding session of you performing your job without showing your face. That would make me very curious about you… just like Sia, haha!

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Sign Me Up!

On March 16th and 17th I will be offering branding and lifestyle sessions at the BH House in Prince Edward County. The sessions are 45 minutes throughout Saturday and Sunday. You will come in at the top of the hour to be photographed in a natural, lifestyle approach - but don’t worry, I will still get those gorgeous luminous headshots of you.

airbnb images are not my own

airbnb images are not my own

These photos will be perfect for social media marketing and of course to brand your business. Imagine a clean, elegant style with beautiful natural light and neutral tones. You are welcome to bring props that you use in your business, like a laptop, camera, notepad, coffee mug, or even bring a model that can sit in as a client.

The location of the sessions is an old, historical Prince Edward County home with wide plank floors, old moldings, window casings and a lot of history (from the 1800s!). You’re going to love it! The walls are mostly white, and the furniture and decor is neutral so feel free to wear a certain colour or bring something that fits the colours of your brand.

I’m encouraging anyone who works from home to also bring in their families (dogs included) to get a few “real life” photographs. Not only will it give a personal touch to your business but you can hang these photos on the wall of your home!

The sessions are $300 + hst for 45 minutes and a minimum of 45 photos. To book I will need a 50% retainer and a signed contract. The Airbnb is in Concecon on Gore Rd! I will provide the address once we make everything official.

Overview:

  • Investment: $300 + hst

  • 50% retainer & signed contract

  • 45 Minute Session

  • Minimum of 45 Photos

  • March 16 & 17

  • Top of the hour (11am - 11:45am , 12pm-12:45pm)

  • BH House in Prince Edward County, Ontario (Concecon)

  • For businesses who want to show who they are and what they have to offer

  • Encourage you to bring your family (dogs included), or a stand in client

  • Must bring own props that you would use in your business

  • All subjects must be ready to turn up their social media marketing and branding game!

To inquire for a branding session with me please fill out the form below. Can’t wait to learn all about you and your business!