Photography Brand Guide | Discover Your Studio’s Personality With This Simple Branding Guide For The Uninspired Photographer!
Photography Brand Guide | When it comes to branding, many photographers feel lost, especially when they’re just starting out. Whether they’re not sure what branding is (spoiler alert: it’s not just the logo!), or they think it’s something reserved only for the industry leaders and other big shots, the mere thought of branding sends shivers down most photographers’ backs. The truth of the matter is that branding is not nearly as complicated or expensive as people think, and it is just as important for small businesses as it is for large corporations.
In today’s competitive market, finding a way to differentiate yourself and stand out from the crowd of photographers is your only chance for success. The equipment has never been easier to use or more affordable, which means everyone with some extra cash on their hands can buy a camera, set up a Facebook page and call themselves a professional photographer. This is exactly why building a solid brand is vital – it will help you stand out and book yourself solid! Not sure where to begin? We have a few tips, tricks, and best practices to help you get started on the right track!
What Exactly Is A Brand? | Photography Brand Guide
So far, we know that branding is one of the essential ingredients of your success, but it’s not just your logo – so what is it? If the logo is the face of your business, we can say that the brand is its personality. It’s your promise to your potential clients, the experience they have doing business with you, and the way people perceive you – it’s the emotional connection between you and your clients, from the first time they stumble upon your website to the day they walk away with their elegantly packaged photos.
Know Your Ideal Client! | Photography Brand Guide
In order to grab someone’s attention, engage them and create an emotional bond, you need to first know who they are! So, before you start building a brand, take some time to figure out who your ideal client is and get to know them better in terms of age, gender, location, marital status, and even finances. All these features will affect the way you brand your business and approach marketing. Are you targeting high-end market or the budget-conscious soccer mom? High-school seniors or brides-to-be? Each group will be attracted to a different brand, so you need to make sure your branding is focused and based on a clearly defined demographic.
Create Your Visual Identity | Photography Brand Guide
Even though your logo is not your brand, it is a critical element of it. It will be the most visible element, after all, so make sure you get a logo that accurately represents your business and the nature of your brand. It will be the cornerstone of your entire visual identity, and you’ll use it on pretty much every item used for professional correspondence, but it will also affect other brand elements, such as colors, fonts and shapes in general.
Whenever we create a logo for a client, we make sure we come up with branding guidelines for them – a short document explaining which colors we used for their logo to represent their brand, the fonts, and we even put a small inspiration board. This will help them create branded materials that are consistent and true to their brands, so if you haven’t already, you’ll want to create your own guidelines.
This might not sound too important if you’re designing everything right now, but once you hire a professional or an agency down the road to design something for you, they’ll have a much better idea how to do it to ensure consistency with your other branded materials even if they’re not too familiar with your brand. The goal here is to turn all of your materials into a cohesive package then look, feel, and sound like they’re coming from the same source by using the same color scheme, fonts and even graphics.
Speak With A Consistent Voice | Photography Brand Guide
What you say is important, don’t get us wrong here, but how you say it is just as important, so you’ll want to create a voice for your photography brand and use it throughout your materials, both online and off. We’re talking about the language, tone of voice, and even branded-oriented words. If you’re super laid back on social media, make sure you keep the same tone of voice on your website as well. If you use a formal tone of voice on your website, your potential clients will end up being confused after checking out your casual social media profiles, and you will never appear authentic and trustworthy.
Never Stop Improving Your Offerings | Photography Brand Guide
Using the same voice in your materials and creating a unique visual experience will allow your potential clients to get to know your brand a bit better and get a sense of what you’re all about, so let your personality shine. However, keep in mind that even the most charming photographer will never refer you to their friends unless you meet and exceed their expectations. This is why you should never stop improving the services you’re providing and tweaking the products you’re offering. Even the most successful photographers will start losing business the moment they stop focusing on their products and focus on the money it brings instead.