It's true. Image matters. You know it's important to have a great photograph of yourself on your LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, etc. profiles, but do you realize the importance of all the other images, in particular, the photographs, that populate the white space on your social media sites, blog and website. As a professional photographer and a creative business owner, I know exactly how important great images are to your image and I'm going to give you five ways to brand your creative business with photographs.

1. Use photographs consistent with your branding
Photographs that convey the overall look, feel and color scheme of your business will easily showcase your brand across your website and social media platforms. Develop a style guide to ensure consistency. Of course, if you have yet to develop your branding, this first step is a great place to start. Photographs are extremely important in today's online world, so think about the types of photos you have access to (paid or royalty-free, never steal photos!) or can create on your own.

2. Create your own branded photographs
It can be difficult to find photographs that convey your brand, especially if you are looking for free or inexpensive images. A very reasonable solution is to take your own photos. Even if the only camera you own is the one on your smartphone, you can take great images. It just takes some planning. (Note: I'm working on a post on how to do that very thing, so be on the lookout!) If you have created a style guide, this should be fairly straightforward. Branded photographs are the images you will use on your website and social media platforms, not necessarily ones of your products.

3. Define a photographic style for your products
No matter what you sell, you need to have a photographic style. Think about how you want the items to look when customers visit your online shop or store. Is the look and feel of your brand light and airy? Dark and brooding? Vibrant and energetic? Your photographs can illustrate your branding in your product images by choosing how your photograph the items, the lighting, the background and your post-processing. Sometimes it is easier and less complicated to hire a professional photographer or even a friend with a great eye for light and composition. Consistency is key when creating images of your goods. 

4. Styled photographs will showcase your brand
One of the easiest and most fun ways to showcase your brand is with a styled photoshoot. It will help if you have developed a style guide for this one, but even if you haven't, don't let the formality of a guide stop you. You will; however, want to make a shot list of all the different images you want to create and take. Examples of these types of images are: your workspace, your desk, tools and materials of your trade, you creating or doing what you do, details and the "big picture". The primary use for these photos will be on your website or online shop, but can also be used in your blog posts. In addition to creating a list of all the different types of images you would like to create, think about where you will use them. This will help you determine if you need horizontal and vertical versions of the same or similar shot. Remember, Pinterest loves tall photos, but Facebook and Twitter cover images are horizontal. Consider leaving plenty of open space in some of the images so you can add text!

5. Put your best face forward
I know the quote is actually "put your best foot forward", but I don't want to see a photo of your foot on Facebook! I've saved the best for last when it comes to branding your creative business with photographs. Make sure the profile photos you are using across your social media platforms and on your website are also consistent with your branding. Incorporate your brand color scheme into your wardrobe or objects in the image to really pull it together. One of my clients spent a whole day choosing her wardrobe and settings for her headshots so her brand would be evident but not too obvious. Her signature color is hot pink and it could have been overdone, but her choices were spot on. Put some planning into your appearance and wardrobe before taking new headshot photos. Remember, as a small creative business owner, you are your brand!

Need some photography?
I am available for headshots, and to coordinate and photograph styled shoots as well as photograph your fabulous products anywhere in the US, so contact me if you would like to find out details. If you have several fellow creative business owners in your area who could benefit from a photo shoot, we can work out some group pricing.

Share your tips for suggestions for branding your creative business in the comments or tweet them to me at @PinkSparkCr8ive and I will share them! Spreading the love!

For a limited time I am offering FREE 30-minute strategy calls to work through your number one burning issue and give you an action plan to give your creative business an instant spark! This is a great opportunity for us to chat and see if we'd be a fabulous fit to work together. Schedule your strategy call today! I can't wait to ignite your spark!

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