Dr. Sarabeth Berk is the leading expert on hybrid professional identity, and a hybrid professional herself. She was featured in Forbes, and is a TEDx
The five big mistakes people make in their Personal Brand Photos
I’m so glad you’re here! If you’re planning a brand shoot, there’s a lot of work that goes into the planning process, and it’s hard jumping in front of the camera, not to mention that if you’re working with a pro, you’re spending your businesses money to make this happen. I’m going to cover the five biggest mistakes that I see people make when they’re doing a personal brand shoot, to save you time and money.
1. They don’t use negative space
I’ve said this before and I’ll say it time and time again. Make sure that when you’re getting your brand pictures done, that your photographer is giving you plenty of negative space around the images. You need extra space around your face and your props so that when you start plugging those images into your marketing materials that they actually fit! This is especially important when it comes to people redoing their website, or wanting to show up as a pro on facebook, Linkedin, Twitter or even in ads. What you want to end up with is extra negative space so that you can crop it however you need. If you have your whole shoot done, and it’s all close ups of your face, you’ll have zero options for banner images. Zero! So make sure that you’re specifically asking your photographer to give you more space in the images, or that you’re purchasing the ones with extra space knowing you’ll use these the most.
2. Changing who they are in the photos
I’ve got to bring this up because I’ve seen it happen and I know how the story ends. If you decide not to wear your glasses in your pictures even though you wear glasses every single day, then you’re going to feel like a fraud when it’s time to use the pictures. If you have naturally curly hair, and you decide to get it straightened for the photoshoot, you won’t feel like you’re being authentic in your images. If you get your makeup done for the shoot and wear big this fake lashes when you never wear makeup, you won’t feel like yourself. So be careful as you plan your shoot to make sure you’re making the decision to show the real authentic version of you. I’m not saying that you need to wear sweatpants if that’s your work at home attire, but you want people to recognize you! So aim to look like yourself and steer clear of trying out a new look for your photoshoot.
3. Not bringing enough to create content
The very best shoots I’ve done are the ones with an extensive wardrobe and lots of props. You don’t have to pose with a coffee mug in every image, but having props to pose with will help you to create more content after the shoot. Having more outfits will help you avoid that “I wear the same outfit every day” look that some brands have when they’ve only done one session, but need to keep posting online.
4. Bringing Wrinkled Clothing
This seems so simple, but it happens to even the most organized person. You pack up your clothes the night before your shoot and when you pull your clothes out to get dressed, they are wrinkled. This doesn’t look good for your brand, and it’s a pretty tough fix in photoshop. My advice here has always been to iron your clothes, and put them all on hangers the day before your photoshoot. You’ll avoid wasted time and wasted money by making sure you’re prepped.
5. Choosing not to smile
Every now and then, I work with someone that prefers how they look without a smile. I urge this person to allow me to take both smiling and not smiling images so that they can have options to choose from when they see their retouched pictures. Here’s the thing, when they actually sit down to look through the images, they always choose the smiling ones. You look so much more approachable with a smile on your face, and your audience is more likely to feel connected to you when you look approachable. So don’t skimp on the smiles!
That’s it. Those are the top five mistakes that I see people make when they’re getting their personal branding images done. I hope this list saves you from getting pictures back that you can’t use in your marketing!
If you’re planning a personal brand shoot in the near future, check out my mini – course Personal Brand Vision to help you solidify your shot list and start showing up confidently on camera in ways that lead to conversions and a growing business here.
If you haven’t grabbed my free guide on what to wear for your personal brand shoot, you can download it here
So much of booking new clients and scaling your business as a personal branding photographer comes from one thing, and one thing alone: getting people
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