Building a personal brand is something we should all be thinking about. Being online provides endless opportunities for strangers (and potential clients or employers) to cast quick and ruthless first impressions. So how exactly can an image affect your personal branding?
You Are The Face Of Your Business, and Your Brand:
Whether you love looking at photos of yourself or not, you have to accept that you are the face of your own personal brand. Personal branding includes how you present yourself, conduct your manners, how you speak, and of course how you act and present yourself online and within your marketing material.
If you were to choose between someone with a professional headshot that they have invested in, and someone with a selfie taken on their phone, who would you choose?
Trust is a delicate thing, and it is also something people make their minds up about quickly. Wouldn’t you feel more confident in someone who made the effort to getting their personal branding together?
How A Portrait Can Link To Your Brand:
A portrait can be a tool to link back to your personal brand. Instagram is a really great way to look at how people create a brand. Either for themselves or their company.
Below are four Instagram accounts. You can see how their profile photos of themselves link to their content. This have been achieved with colour, negative space, patterns, leading lines, and scenery. Each profile image connects to their content below – it is particularly evident with colours and tones, but also patterns and shapes. Their profile photos also say something subtly about their personality and character – and also how this links back to their content. If that be bold, quirky, enthusiastic, relaxed, or open. These examples show an immediate connection between portrait and content, and give a good example of how yours can too.
Some Other Examples:
Pretty In Pink:
Photographer Jonathan utilises a very minimalist design in his website. It is mostly monochrome, with the exception of pink highlights. In his portrait we came up with two options: black and white, and colour. The black and white portrait can be used if he were to keep the minimalist monochrome look, while the pink portrait can further link to his feature colour.
Tracy runs a meditation business called Looking Inwards, and she is a qualified horticulturist too. Our first session used natural surroundings outdoors paired with morning sunlight. We took these shots before she had launched her business, so it was all about capturing her in a range of headshots. It made sense to photograph her amongst nature in her local area. It really spoke about her gentle nature and love for the outdoors and planet earth.
Our second branding session (6 months on) was all about bringing her now well-formed personal brand and personality into a studio environment. We brought plants into the studio to link back to the natural setting from our first shoot. Plantlife is also often used in Tracy’s social media posts and marketing material. In this session we focused on the warm, calm and enthusiastic energy Tracy brings into all her classes. The range of images included both a candid and interactive approach.
In each of these shoots Tracy wore colours that linked back to the Looking Inwards logo, helping complete a cohesive look that all links back to the Looking Inwards brand.
Don’t Just Pick Any Old Image:
You might think you look great in that selfie, or your mother says it is a really beautiful shot.
The fact: Professional portraits take your personal branding to another level that you can’t achieve with an amateur or with a selfie in the office from your smartphone.
A good portrait will show people:
– You care,
– Are worth trusting,
– And are serious about what you do.
A social blogger and a Lawyer are not going to have the same image. Every person and brand has something they want to say in their image.
Start seriously considering what sort of image will reflect your brand:
– What are you trying to sell about yourself?
– Where will you use the image?
– How does it work with other content you have, or are creating?
– How do you act around your clients?
Get started with a personal branding session! Link what you do, how you act, and all of your marketing material together.