Roughly 2 years ago, I wrote this blog post about why you need brand photos. Today we’re going to dive even deeper into why luxury brands need intentional brand photos (and not boring headshots or photos that look like everyone else in your industry). Get ready for the next post in my Building a Luxury Brand series!
As a website designer, I tell all of my clients that they need photos of their work and themselves for their website. Why? It’s as simple as this: people want to know who they’re buying from. Recently I was having lunch with my friend Emily, a wedding + brand photographer here in Charlotte, North Carolina, and we got to talking about what kind of photos business owners actually need for their website. So, this post is to share some of that information with anyone wanting to build a luxury look for their business!
As cute as I’m sure those photos are, a couple of stiff headshots your husband took in front of the blank wall in your dining room just aren’t going to cut it in the luxury market, friend. If you’re presenting yourself as a high-end brand, you need photos that show who you are. Not just what you do, but what your personality is like. A professional brand photo session is the way to do that!
An actual brand photographer will typically walk you through some of what I’m going to cover, but I want to come at this from the angle of a website designer who uses the brand photos once the gallery is delivered!
Brand photographers know how to get you to open up, to show your true personality. Like I mentioned in the intro to this post, people want to know who they’re buying from! So showing your personality is important when people are meeting you (likely for the first time) on your website. Let me tell you first hand, when I just had a handful of headshots, I got on discovery calls with people who didn’t really want to open up to me or didn’t know much about me yet (even if they had read my about page). Once I started using intentional brand photos that weren’t stiff pictures of me smiling head on, my discovery calls completely changed!
There’s a bit of psychology behind this, too. The more people feel like they know you, the more money they’re going to be willing to spend with you. And since you’re living your dream in the luxury business world, we already know you need to check the low-ballers at the door!
I’m glad you asked! Below I’ll dive into what I personally think about, and recommend to my clients, when taking brand photos.
It’s important to curate a color palette for your brand session so that everything is not only on brand, but also cohesive! This doesn’t have to be done formally, by any means, but knowing that you’re going to wear or have props that are white, gold, hot pink, and blush, and green helps make sure everything you purchase is intentional, resulting in higher-end looking photos!
Here are a few images from my most recent brand session that showcase the color palette I was utilizing (very similar to my brand color palette so they would work well on my website):
What you wear for your shoot is the first step in figuring out how to look and feel your best. I’m so used to hearing “wear neutrals” and while I did wear one white dress, I wanted my outfits to be packed with as much creativity and fun as I am!
Consider your color palette when you’re picking your outfits. I recommend 3-4 different looks for your website so it’s not too repetitive. Don’t be afraid to go bold with your colors, and don’t be afraid to break out of the norm! Wearing something that makes you feel GOOD will make your smile even more genuine in your photos, too.
Below are the full outfits I selected for my shoot:
We are leaving the generic photos holding your camera, laptop, or coffee in 2022, friend!! You know what I’m talking about…
This is the era of making your brand photos more personal, so consider things like florals, books, color swatches, cocktails or champagne, or even using cute shoes as a prop! The more out-of-the-box, the more unique and memorable your photos will be. And you want to be unique and memorable 😉
Here’s a look at the props I used for my shoot:
When my clients are going through their photos to upload them for their new websites, a lot of times they ask whether they need horizontal or vertical photos. The answer is BOTH!
Each orientation works in different scenarios. Below you’ll see an example of each one:
Make sure you let your brand photographer know that you need both orientations, because a lot of my former clients that are photographers have mentioned they shoot primarily in portrait orientation! You’ll want those stunning landscape (horizontal) images, trust me girlfriend.
You knew I wasn’t going to leave you hanging on who was involved in my brand shoot, right? I wanted to look and feel my best for these photos, since they’re how people will be meeting my on my website, and that meant hiring a team that would make it effortless for me! They were worth every penny, and if you’re in the Charlotte, NC area, I highly recommend you reach out to these incredible vendors as well!
Photography – Demi Mabry
Florals & Creative Direction – Wallflower Event Co.
Hair & Makeup – The Posh Palette
Branded Sign – Unspoken Designs
When you have your brand session, shoot me a DM on Instagram and share the pics with me, I can’t wait to see them!