You’ve decided to invest in your business with a branding photography session. You won’t regret it! Personal branding photography immediately increases the quality of your website and social media content, improves how you attract clients and customers, and gets your message heard. But now that you’ve booked a branding photography session, you may be feeling a little nervous thinking about being photographed. I hear you! Being photographed is a vulnerable thing, and it’s my job to help you feel more comfortable.
When people are feeling a little nervous, the most common question I hear as a small business photographer is, “What do I do with my hands?” And guess what… I have the answers! I always guide my clients into poses–including your hands–that feel natural and comfortable, but something else that helps is DOING something with your hands. So here’s a list of a few simple branding photography props to bring to your session to keep those hands occupied.
1. Hold a cup of coffee (or tea)… or beer or ?
What’s the fuel that keeps you going throughout the workday? Or what do you enjoy at the end? If you’ve got a penchant for any beverage, a fun mug can be the perfect accessory to hold in your branding photos. It’s not only a comfort to those of us in desperate need of caffeination or relaxation, but it’s also a common workday accessory and creates a common ground with your viewers.
BONUS: Choose a local crafter to feature in the photo. Then you give them a shout out on social media and they might share your message, too!
2. Check your phone
No matter what kind of business you run, chances are your phone is always close by. Whether it’s answering client phone calls, filling orders or just trying to keep up with your busy schedule, your cell phone is an important accessory in your business, and it’s a pretty natural thing to have at your fingertips during your photography session.
PRO TIP: Use photos of you using your phone to make Instagram Stories and posts about how you communicate, your opening hours, shipping and receiving… anything that references how you intend to talk with your clients.
3. Use your laptop or computer
A great way to show how you work is by sitting at or working on your computer. If what your brand offers isn’t a tangible product, your workspace and work accessories are often the best way to demonstrate that you’re a busy professional, working hard to build and grow your brand.
PRO TIP: Stock photos of computers are boring and they LOOK like stock photos. Photos of your actual work station personalize your story.
4. Show us what’s in your bag… Books, magazines, day planners?
What’s in your bag or on your desk? How do you make your day flow? If you have a day planner, share stories about that packed schedule and to-do list. You can use a book or magazine as an accessory, especially if your job involves regular research or design or inspiration. Do you take a bag with you to meetings or conferences? Showcase it in your branding images! How you commute and what products get you there show how you prepare and show up for clients.
PRO TIP: Shout out to other businesses or do a “what’s in the bag” story about your gear.You can tell your clients more about you and your company with the types of books and magazines that you read!
5. Use the tools of your craft
What items do you use in an average workday? If you build or create things, you may have actual tools. Maybe you work on a computer or tablet. Whatever you use, include these items in your branding photos to showcase how you do your work and keep those hands busy.
BONUS: You can share stories about why and how you use the tools, and hacks that make your work life easier.
As you’re choosing props for your branding session, think about how you can best represent the work you do to tell your business or personal story, in addition to the products or services you offer. If you’re still unsure what simple branding photography props to use, let’s talk about it! I’m more than happy to help you figure out exactly how best to keep your hands busy as you show off who you are!
The above images are from a branding session with West Kootenay Real Estate. We’ll be building their brand with regular content updates featuring the Kootenay lifestyle. Because Paula is literally selling the region, she’ll be modelling everything the area has to offer: biking, hiking, skiing; historic downtown with a focus on artists; amazing bars and restaurants. WKRE signed on for my year-long program, so we can show all the seasons and continually provide content she can share with her potential clients.