Before booking a personal branding photoshoot you want to make sure that you have a strategy behind your business to have a stand out brand. Having clarity about your personal brand is key to create personal branding photography with images that are on brand and knowing exactly what to say with you images and which purpose.
If I ask you about your brand? How do you feel? Do you want to run away? Are you excited? Can’t be bothered or are you thinking I need help building my brand as I feel completely lost with all the information out there!
Having a brand is becoming critical, there’s about 80 million small and medium sized business pages on Facebook alone so how can you stand out? Building a stand out brand is a sure way to get noticed as your building it on something unique YOU!
If you’re looking to build a distinctive brand to stand out but still confused, then read on!
Going through a few business failures before setting up my brand I learned a few lessons in the making also by looking at successful brands like Boden, or smaller brand that I admire like AudreyParisPhoto these brands know exactly who they are speaking to and what they are for, there’s no questioning, every element in their branding, the style, the copy, the images work in harmony to create a distinctive brand. So, what did I learn that I can share with you?
I give you a 20 steps process to help you create a distinctive brand from scratch.
Before you set-up your business and brand ask yourself what motivates you, what do you want to achieve with your business? Why do you want to set up a business? Explore your motivations and write them down. You want passion, fire behind your ideas, money is critical, but it shouldn’t be your only motivator.
2.Who are you serving
Who is your ideal client, have a clear image of who you want to help and get into details, about their age, habits, are they male or female, where are they hanging out, what are they reading etc? Give a name to your avatar to speak to one person in all your communication.
3.What problem are you solving
Let’s imagine you called your avatar (ideal client) Marie, what does keep Marie awake at night what problem is she desperate to solve?
4.What solution do you offer to her/ his problem?
Let’s consider Marie again, what solution can you offer to her problem, define it as a benefit, what people want is either a transformation, financial freedom, improve their career, their health, getting more client, match your solution towards the benefit she’s after by listing the transformation she will achieve with you, it’s much more than a product and a service it’s an aspiration.
5.Work on your brand message
To stand out, you have to tell Marie what you do, explain why you’re the best person to help her out. Be upfront I help X (i.e. creative entrepreneurs) …. with (getting their business organised) ….. To serve (their client better and get more referral) …
6.What are your brand values
To stand out, shout out about your brand values, i.e. your brand empowers women, gives back to charity, explain how your brand is making a difference in the world and how your client is taking part in it.
7.Work on your brand identity
Once you are clear on your message, who you’re serving start to look at what your brand will look like from the outside, choose three keywords that you want to associate with your brand, i.e. joyful, elegant, bold and filter all your brand styling elements (font, colours, logo, copy images) against these keywords.
Don’t be afraid to go niche, the more specific you are, the more you will stand as an expert.
9.Serve instead of selling
Before you start selling you need to build a relationship with your ideal audience, for anyone to buy from you they first need to know, love and trust you. How do you do that? You serve them first by giving lots of free content, connecting and inviting to engage.
10.Set up a client process
Create a consistent client experience, by setting up a process from the moment they get in touch with you until you have delivered the project/service/product they came to buy from you and keep that relationship going!
11.Keep it consistent
90% of consumers expect their experience with a brand to be similar across all brand touch points! Which means stay consistent in everything you do, the way you serve a client, the type of images you post on social media, on your website, the way you write, who you serve. Keep in mind what your brand is at its core and stay put. (Source: https://www.crowdspring.com/blog/successful-branding-for-entrepreneurs-statistics/)
12.Develop a vision for your brand
Create a mood on Pinterest to develop your brand vision. Choose the type of images you want, what do you want to say with your pictures, what colour tones you want in your images, the type of font you want to use and create a style guide from there.
13.Create a style guide for your brand
To keep your brand consistent, across all touch points (social media, website, etc.) Create a style guide, with a one-page quick reference with your logo, your main colours, fonts, and type of images.
14.Develop a content marketing plan
Did you know that blogs generate 67% more leads per month than companies who don’t have a blog? To serve your audience, you will need to deliver free content for them first, work on what type of content you will deliver, what will you teach and educate about? Create a few opt-ins to invite people to sign up to your list it is the best way to develop a relationship with your audience (Source https://blog.hubspot.com/customers/10-reasons-blogging-should-be-part-of-your-2018-content-strategy)
15.Develop a plan for your branding photography
Images are often the last task in branding but are as important as choosing the right font. People will connect first via your images, you only have about 8s seconds to convince your audience to read what you have to say on your website so make sure your images have impact to support your copy. It’s important that your pictures speak the right message for your brand. What kind of vibe, emotion do you want in your pictures? Will it be more outdoors, lifestyle or more polished with images shot in a studio.
Use your Pinterest mood board to define a vision for the type of images you want for your brand.
16.What is your brand personality?
Your brand personality is often a correlation between your personality and your business. How do you want people to feel when they come across your brand, is your brand fun, joyful, aspirational, enthusiastic etc? Match your branding elements against these words i.e what does fun mean in your brand, what colours do you associate with fun, orange, yellow, red?
17.What is your brand story?
Tell your audience how your brand came about, what is the motivation behind the business and how you will help your audience through their journey helping them reach their goal. The hero in the story is your client, and you will be their guide.
18.Keep it simple
Rather than overcomplicating it, keep it simple don’t clutter your website, say it in a few words from the start, ask someone outside your business area or niche if everything you wrote, and the website navigation makes sense.
You are the unique element in your brand so don’t be afraid to be YOU!
20. Stand Out
Show yourself; you are the image of your brand and what makes your brand unique, don’t hesitate to show yourself and tell what makes you different, invite your audience to connect with you to know, love and trust YOU.
Struggling to define your brand? What is your biggest challenge with branding your images? Share in the comments.
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