You’ve had enough of the 9-5 life. You want to go solo or you’ve already made the leap. Maybe you’ve recently been made redundant. Or you simply have the ‘the goods’ – services, skills or products to offer so you decide to launch a business. Is this your story?
You’re busy getting your marketing materials sorted. You’re busy thinking.
Do I need a logo? I’ll need business cards. Do I need brochures as well? I need a website.
Oh my God… so much to do!
You may already have a business and you need to ‘refresh’ your brand. You may need to drive more sales. Maybe you’re not representing yourself in the best light! Perhaps you’re changing the direction of your business and, as a result, you need to attract new customers.
After all that noise and mental chatter, here comes the realisation:
I am the face of my business.
You are the brand that you need to promote. Photos of yourself for your business are often the best promotional tools that connect you to your customers.
You may be thinking:
- I don’t look good in photos
- Sometimes I feel like crying when looking at photos of myself
- I hate being in front of a camera
- People might think I’m self-indulgent or vain.
Most people worry about getting photographed. But you also know that you need to have the courage – smash that fear and dread – because you have to do it for your business to succeed.
Here’s a helping hand. Real stories from women in business. Read their stories below. They beat their own self-defeating anxiety and now use professional photos to represent and market their business.
I asked my clients two questions:
What were your thoughts when you finally decided to get your photos done?
What would be your advice for other women in business with fear and dread about getting photos done?
I was nervous about having my pictures taken and a bit shy having them taken in public but Songy and her team made me feel at ease and I really enjoyed it!
I would say to definitely get your pictures done because it makes your website look so much more professional. I also love how the pictures turned out and it just made me feel more confident in my business and when referring people to my site. I also think clients want to see who they are going to be working with, and to get to know you first.
– Karen Murphy, Wellness Expert
I was excited to work with Songy after I looked at her website and saw what she had done with others. I felt that our photos represented us well for our business. My business partner, Kate, and I had loads of fun, and enjoyed the whole process. We felt special from the moment we arrived and were hanging to see the final photos!
Having the photos done professionally gave me confidence and congruence with who I am…
– Deb Werndly, Personal Analysis (Business and Personal Coaching)
I couldn’t wait to do my photo’s with Songy (as I knew I was in good hands) and out of the hundreds of photos that Songy took, I had confidence that she would get some really good ones for me to use on my website (and more).
Look at Songy’s previous work and you can get a feeling of what she is able to produce. We never really love photo’s of ourselves. However, trust the fact that Songy will get that one or two that you really love and you can use them over and over and over again on different e-platforms.
– Narelle Goodfield, Image Intelligence (Corporate/Executive Consulting and Coaching)
I decided to work with Songy after seeing some of the amazing shots she had produced for other women, and although having photos taken is something I usually dread deeply, Songy made me feel absolutely fantastic throughout the whole process. She had an amazing eye for detail and was amazing at suggesting just the right outfit/location/style of shot so that all the shots came out amazingly well. I felt super confident going into the shoot as everything was so well organised in advance and Songy just took charge of every aspect and made it incredibly easy and enjoyable for me!
For any woman in business that is hesitating to get photos done professionally, it’s time to step up! The authority that professionally done photographs will give your business and brand image is worth 10x of the investment – it really will catapult the perception of your business to new heights and have you signing amazing new clients left, right and centre!
– Vicky Murgatroyd, the Life Empowerment Project (Entrepreneurship & Business Coaching)
I wanted photos for re-branding my website and to help better connect with my customers. I wanted photos that would reflect my personality and tell customers who I am. On the day of the shoot I was pretty nervous and I worried about whether I would be able to do it or not. In the end, I didn’t have to worry about a thing. Songy took over everything – in a good way. She made me feel very comfortable, taking care of every detail including clothing and styling. Songy gave great directions about where and how to stand, where to look. Everything.
I would say to women in business that rebranding is an ever-evolving aspect of business and it’s great to work with someone who knows your needs and understands what you want. I would definitely use Songy again.
– Leanne Lisbon, Mind over Muffin (Food Relationship & Weight Loss Expert)
I was apprehensive. The nature of my work relies heavily on me being readily identifiable and my business will succeed or fail on that basis. I value being an authentic real person and didn’t want to look like a glossy version of myself but equally wanted to look professional.
I rarely get good pictures and often look a little startled in posed shots. I thought it was going to be really hard to get the essence of me and project credibility. As uncomfortable as I was though, I just had to do it.
The way Songy approached our initial conversations made me confident not only of her skills as a photographer but also that she understood and respected my vulnerabilities, and supported my sense of business identity/style.
She helped me relax and even enjoy it.
I’ve used the images Songy produced across Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn and used them in other promotional materials. The strong cover image is part of my brand and is proving most useful in developing my business identity.
The feedback about the professionalism of the website and the photographs has been really positive and has reinforced that my decision to get professional photographs was the right way to go.
Alison has some advice for fellow women in business:
Take a look at the competition in your market place and then look at the leaders in your field. Assess their images on their platforms and collateral. You need to match their level of polish and sophistication in terms of projecting a business image.
Good photos mean more than you looking good. The lighting, backdrop, clarity of focus, composition and of course the subject all contribute. Professional photos provide more than a sum of the parts. For example, I needed a “community feel” and that was reflected in the locations, infrastructure and props selected by Songy.
It’s also important to talk about your motivations and intentions in terms of what the shoot is for and how you intend to use the images. For me, they are an integral part my personal and professional brand and the way they have been taken provides me with a suite of images that can be used flexibly across platforms.
Alison has some tips for approaching your photo shoot:
- Be assured that you are allowed to offer your ideas on what you would like. Songy’s invitation to provide examples of what I liked was really useful in getting the right finished product.
- Make sure you get advice on colour and clothing and styles that will help define the right look and feel for your photos. Make sure you explain any colours, styles, tones that you particularly like or don’t like. I like clean lines, navy blue and honest real images. Songy took that and worked wonders.
- Also, be sure to discuss the makeup and hair style before the shoot. Better still, send in some photos showing your preferred hair/makeup styles.
- Talk to Songy about your fears and also any sensitivities you might have about your appearance. Trust her. I did and I was delighted.
– Alison Blake, Strategic Support (Business Consultant specialised in National Disability Insurance Scheme)
The bottom line:
It’s not as bad as you imagine. Nothing ever is, really. You knew that already, right?
Every client I worked with all said the same thing at the end – “It was so much fun”.
Professional images are invaluable for your business. They represent an authentic YOU.
Last but not least, afterwards you feel more confident about yourself and your work.