How to Plan for Brand Shoot | Pittsburgh, Pa

3 Tips for Planning a Successful Branding Session

Planning for a brand shoot can be overwhelming, but with a clear focus and specific objectives for the shoot, you can be assured you will walk away with the exact kind of content you need.

In this blog, I will walk you through my top three tips for planning a brand shoot.

#1. Know your core brand messages.

As a business/ entrepreneur, you should have 3-5 core brand messages. Your brand messages should align with the mission and values of your business. They should also align with you as a person.

You and your business are of the same being. If your business does not align with who you are as a person, you will struggle to create a brand that resonates with your audience.

Ceramic artist Carina Kooiman wanted to showcase the value & joy carefully crafted ceramics pieces bring to peoples' lives. She creates functional artwork, and that's what she wants her customers to think about when purchasing her work.

Core messaging is what you consistently communicate to your ideal customer.

Many businesses share what they sell or do and stop there. This type of marketing lacks depth. Core brand messaging is about creating a whole picture of the persona of the business.

Core brand messaging includes what a business offers as well as what the business values and its story or the why in the business.

Core Brand Message Examples

Example 1: Our company values family, we strive to offer our employees a working environment that supports that lifestyle. This is why we offer8 weeks paid paternal and maternal leave for expecting parents, we provide low-cost day-care services here at our company, and our employees receive 3 emergency days that do not affect their sick leave time.

Example 2: I am a single mom working to provide a well-rounded life for my family. I share with my audience the realness of my everyday life to serve as an inspiration to other moms making shit happen while also being honest about the struggles of motherhood.

KC the owner of UrbanFitCo. values self-care. One of her daily practices is meditating and journaling. Part of her brand shoot focused on creating content of her daily routine so she can share with connect with her audience through similar interests.

Questions to Consider

  • What values does my business hold that relates to my ideal customer?

  • Why did I start this business and how does it connect with my ideal customer?

  • What do I want people to say about my business when I am not around?

  • What parts of my personal experience or life can I bring into my business that will connect with my audience?

Not sure what your core brand messages are?

You can download my Brand Clarity & Consistency guide I use with my clients.

#2. Review your current online presence and plan for what needs to change.

With a clear understanding of your brand messaging, it's time to see if you are showing up in life and your business the way you say you are. While you review your brand presence online and in the real world look at the colors, subject, and frequency of your content.

What does your current content say about your brand? Does it align with what you want your brand to be or do you have to make some adjustments?

Creating a strong brand takes time and work. Use the questions below to help you move in the right direction.

Questions to consider

  • Are you sharing too much of the product or service and not enough about the why or behind the scenes of your business?

  • Are your images consistent in color and feel or do they seem sporadic and messy?

Using your review of your current brand presence write down where you want to be and what you think needs to change to get there. This will help immensely when planning your brand session with your photographer.

Want to dive into this even further, my brand guide will help you get a clear view of what you are currently doing and what you need to do to make adjustments.

Olivia a local Pittsburgh blogger wanted to highlight her passion for slow fashion. This photo along with others was taken for a blog post talking about the fashion industry and sustainable practices.

#3. Outline how and where you plan to use this content.

There is no question that a brand session is key to elevating your brand. But without a clear direction & purpose for the shoot investing the money can feel scary or, worst of all, a waste of time and money.

Prior to hiring a photographer take the time to figure out the purpose of the session. In what ways will you be using the content from your session. Some content may be evergreen and some of it may be time-sensitive.

Questions to consider

  • Is it to give your website a facelift, will you be using the images for Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, the Blog?

  • How many images will you need? How often do you post to Instagram, Blog, etc?

  • Do you have any special promotions or events coming up that you need specific content for?

I've linked below other blog posts with more information on personal brand photography for you to explore.

What is Personal Brand Photography?

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Hey there, I'm LeeAnn!

I'm an elementary art teacher turned personal brand photographer.

Helping entrepreneurs see their brand vision come to life lights up my soul!

When I'm not working with brand clients I am helping families document life's moments.

In my off hours you can find me spending time with my partner Ramona and our three fur-babies Max the cat, Cooper the dog, and Willis the bunny.

I have the best white-girl dance moves and like to sing random words or phrases when I am talking to people.

If we get the chance to meet you'll likely witness one of those things.

Interested in reading more about me and why I started this glorious biz? Check out my about me page.

Interested in receiving more tips and tricks on branding and all things business? Sign-up for my monthly newsletter, I send out once or twice a month!

Personal & Business Branding Photographer in Pittsburgh, PA

Pittsburgh based Family Portrait Photographer

Based in Pittsburgh, PA

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