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I'm a branding photographer living in Charleston, South Carolina, a lover of eating strawberries, and my obsession is teaching others how to live a life they love.

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5 Things NOT To Do When Planning Your Brand Photoshoot

Nov 17

So you’re ready to book a brand photoshoot for your business. Maybe you’re already locked in with the perfect brand photographer, but now you’re wondering, “now what!?”

Executing a brand shoot for your business (the right way!) takes time, attention, and a bit of strategic planning. The truth is, it is a big undertaking! But after 6+ years in the brand photography business and hundreds of shoots under my belt, I’ve learned the key ways to make planning and executing a brand shoot as seamless as possible (and the mistakes to avoid!).

In this post, I rounded up the top 5 things NOT to do when planning your brand photoshoot. By nixing these simple oversights in the bud, you’ll soon have the perfect brand photos in your hands!

5 Things NOT To Do When Planning Your Brand Photoshoot

1. Don’t forget to communicate your goals 

You might not have thought about it this way before, but your brand photos are a key player in reaching your business goals (really!). You can think of your brand photos as one of the tools you have to propel your revenue, marketing, and relationship-building goals forward. When you book a brand shoot, you should communicate your business goals to your photographer.

Don’t only communicate your goals for the next quarter, 6 months, and 1 year. It’s especially helpful to relay even your biggest, wildest dreams to your photographer so they know where you’re headed. Keep those goals in mind at every step as you plan your shoot!

2. Don’t ignore your platforms

Here’s something I see a lot: business owners know they need brand photos, but they’re not quite sure what that means for their business. It’s much easier to get started than you might think if you relate to this. Look at each of the platforms where your business lives online or in print. This is different for every business owner, but the most common platforms are your website, social media accounts, email newsletter, and printed materials.

Once you take a look at the platforms you’re utilizing, make a list of what’s missing. Where could you use a new photo to explain or suggest something about your business? To get your wheels turning, be sure to download my free guide, the Brand Photoshoot Shot List: Your 7 Must-Have Shots

3. Don’t forget to take your brand color scheme into account

Before you plan any details of your shoot, like your shoot location, wardrobe, or props, keep your brand’s color scheme top of mind. Nothing needs to be matchy-matchy (like the classic khaki and white tee look of early 2000’s family photos on the beach). But, your colors can be the string that pulls your photos together. Check out my client Jordan’s shoot for the perfect example of tying a brand color scheme into your brand photos.

4. Don’t believe you’re not creative

Even though most of my clients are creative business owners, they don’t necessarily see themselves as creative when it comes to planning a brand shoot. If you have similar beliefs, stop that in its tracks right this second! Just because you’re not an expert at planning a brand shoot (and why would you be? You’ve got your own genius that you do on the daily!) doesn’t mean you can’t bring creative ideas to the table. You know your business better than anyone, and your creative ideas are essential to the planning process. A great brand photographer will welcome and encourage collaboration.

5. Don’t unnecessarily stress yourself out

No lie: a brand shoot is a big undertaking when you do it right. There are a lot of moving parts to a brand shoot, and you’ll need help to keep them all on track. No matter how much you believe you can “do it all” (believe me, I’m usually one of those people!), resist the urge to try and do everything yourself. You will invest more money by hiring help, but it will pay off big time in the time and stress that you save yourself. 

Here are some ways you can save your sanity:

  • Lean on your marketing team members, or hire a marketing agency
  • Hire a brand photographer with the experience, knowledge, and skills to support you in the process 
  • Hire a hair and makeup artist
  • Hire a wardrobe stylist
  • Hire a videographer (why not do double duty and get your still & video content on the same day?)
  • Rent a beautiful shoot location

There you have it! These are the top 5 things NOT to do when planning your brand photoshoot. When you avoid these common mistakes, you’ll be well on your way to a stress-free and exciting brand shoot experience. And how about the incredible brand photos you’re going to end up with!? Which one did you find the most helpful? I’d love to hear what you think in the comments!

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