Simple Photography Branding Advice | How To Brand A Photography Business In 4 Ridiculously Simple Steps
Simple Photography Branding Advice | Branding has become pretty much an essential part of our lives – so much so, in fact, that my niece told me the other day that instagramming a Starbucks coffee isn’t a part of her “brand!” She’s 17. And yes, she used air-quotes. And yes, I felt judged like I haven’t felt since high-school. But it got me thinking: we’re in a new era of branding, and it’s no longer just about the world-renown companies. Whether you’re watching a reality show, or attending a photography conference, you will hear someone talking about branding. But what is it? I mean, really, what is branding? Should you care?
Spoiler alert: you should! Even though your first thought might be Nike and their swoosh when you hear the word “brand,” or Twitter and their iconic bird, small businesses can use the immense potential of branding to grow their client base and go from a startup to a household name. However, we live in a time when pretty much everyone with some extra cash on their hands can start their own business, so the real challenge isn’t starting a photography business, but standing out from the sea of competitors. To help you get a better idea of what branding is and how you too can build a powerful brand, we divided the entire process into 5 easy-to-follow steps even your grandma would love. Let’s check them out together!
Introduce Yourself! | Simple Photography Branding Advice
One of the first things you’ll need to do when starting a photography business is to come up with a name. In fact, you won’t be able to register a company without a name, but choosing the right name isn’t important just for the trademark. You need to make sure the name you choose is something you can live with for as long as you’re in business. Even though changing the name of your business isn’t all that complicated, it can do more damage than good, as it can end up alienating existing and confusing potential clients.
Think about it – you will spend a good amount of time (And money!) on raising awareness and making sure your clients remember the name of your business. Changing the name of your business down the road will make all of your efforts practically useless, so make sure you choose the right name right off the bat. There are two routes photographers take – you can either use your own name for the name of your business, or you can come up with a completely unique name. Either way is perfectly fine, but if you’ve been doing photography for some time now and you’ve already built some awareness, you might want to consider continuing using your name.
Put Your Face On | Simple Photography Branding Advice
Once you come up with a name for your business, you will need to come up with a logo – and no, it’s not optional. Now, let’s get one thing straight – your photos are the best and most accurate representation of your brand – however, there’s a caveat. Your potential clients are far more likely to see your logo long before your photos, which means they’ll already have a pretty solid opinion of you by the time they check out your portfolio.
While you may be tempted to spice up your logo with whirls, gradients, shadows and other bells and whistles, it’s best to keep the design simple. Unless an element adds value to the design or reinforces the message, chances are, it doesn’t belong there. At the end of the day, your logo is the face of your business and your entire brand, which means it has to work well across all materials and applications, as well as in various sizes without affecting the message or the overall design quality, and a simple design will do just that!
Ensure Consistency | Simple Photography Branding Advice
All of your materials can and should convey the essence of your brand, from your website and the colors, fonts and images you use to set it up, to your logo and the tone of voice you use on social media. You want your potential clients to recognize your brand whether they stumble upon your Twitter profile, your website, or find your business card in their old wallet, and the only way to do it is through creativity and consistency. It’s been often said that in order to remember a logo, people have to see it five to seven times, and every time you use inconsistent branding, whether it’s a Facebook post ridden with typos or using an older version of your logo, you’re not only missing a chance to engage your ideal clients, but you’re risking confusing and alienating them.
Come Up With A Voice For Your Brand | Simple Photography Branding Advice
What you say is important, but never overlook the importance of the way you say it, because if you don’t get the voice right, you might fail to engage your potential clients. We’re talking about the language you use, as well as the tone, and just like the visual identity, your voice should be consistent throughout your materials, both online and off. If you use a laid back tone of voice on social media, for example, and a formal one on your website, you will only confuse your potential clients and risk sounding inauthentic.