One of the most challenging parts about outsourcing anything is finding the right people to hire. And let’s be honest, no one knows our brands like we do, so finding a brand photographer who can bring your vision to life can be challenging!
In this post, I’m breaking down my top tips on finding the right brand photographer for your business. I hope you use these tips to find a photographer who brings your beautiful brand to life!
FIRST: Make sure they’re a good fit for your brand.
With any type of photographer, it’s so important that you do your research and figure out if their style is a good fit for you. The first thing you should check is whether or not your brand jives with the photographer’s shooting and editing style. Look through their website and Instagram feed.. can you see their style working for your brand? Have they worked with other professionals in your industry?
Most brand photographers will change their editing style slightly to match your brand, but if you want bright and airy photos, you won’t want to hire a dark and moody photographer. There are certain styles that may be too far away from what you’re going for.
And if you’re not sure, it never hurts to ask! Find some photos that are your style and ask the photographer you’re considering if they can shoot and edit in that style. If not, find someone who can. Your brand photos are often the first impression people get of your brand, so it’s so important that they match the overall aesthetic you’re going for.
Second to style is personality. If you’re going to do a full brand photoshoot, you’ll spend several hours on the phone and in person with your photographer. Your overall experience will be so much better if you hire someone that you feel comfortable around. Check out your photographer’s Instagram stories, look at their client testimonials, and read about their client experience on their website. Do they seem like someone you could be friends with? If so, it’s a good sign that you’d enjoy working with them too.
SECOND: Know your budget.
Brand photography is an investment in your brand, so know what you’re willing to invest. There are many photographers who offer headshots, but you should expect to pay less per branding photo than per headshot. While headshots can cost between $50 – $100+ per photo, branding photos usually cost $15 – $40 per photo depending on the experience of the photographer, and the number of photos you’re batching in one session.
This is because branding photos are not retouched like headshots are, and they can be batched in larger quantities which saves on time.
You should note that this is a typical cost for branding photos that are being used for social media and websites. If you plan to use your photos in places like billboards, advertising, magazines, or books, you will probably need to work out a licensing fee with your photographer on top of your session price.
If you have a small budget, maybe start with a modern headshot session or a mini branding session, and make it a goal to save for a full branding session in the future.
THIRD: Keep working with the same brand photographer if possible.
Like any professional you hire, when your brand photographer works with your brand over time, they get better at delivering phenomenal content. I always recommend sticking to the same photographer as long as they’re meeting your expectations. The more you work with them, the more they’ll learn about your brand, preferences, and needs, and the better they’ll be able to deliver for your brand.
I follow all of my clients on social media and am constantly thinking of new photo ideas for them based on the topics they talk about often. I even save items to an Amazon wish list that could be on-brand photoshoot props for repeat clients. The more I learn, the more intentionally I can create.
FOURTH: If you work with a wedding/family/other photographer, expect to do some extra work.
The value in brand photography isn’t in being able to take pretty pictures. Any photographer should be able to do that.
The value in brand photography is being able to create images that will engage your unique target market, make your brand message memorable, and generate more leads and sales for your business.
If you do decide to save some money by hiring a non-brand photographer, expect to do some extra work to get the images you need. You’ll most likely need to be the one wearing the ‘brand strategist’ hat. Most brand photographers have an onboarding process or brand questionnaire that will help them learn about your brand story, style your photoshoot, and give you guidance on what to wear and bring.
However, if you work with a photographer who will only show up and shoot, there are some things you will need to do yourself:
- Know what platforms you’ll be using these photos on, and double check that your photographer can deliver the images in the appropriate sizes you need for those platforms. Depending on the platforms you’re using, you may need mostly vertical images, horizontal images, or both. Make sure your photographer knows this ahead of time.
- If you need specific images, like a website header image for example, communicate that clearly before and during the photoshoot. In addition to specific images, there are 3 types of images that every brand should have.
- Don’t hesitate to send your photographer your Pinterest board with shot list ideas and inspiration to help communicate what you want.
- Make sure your photographer doesn’t just pick their go-to location for family/engagement/other photos. Be sure to pick an on-brand location that will jive with your shot list and help you create the brand aesthetic you’re going for. Your photographer can advise on lighting, but you may need to have some back and forth to choose the right location.
- Make sure you have a plan for your hair and makeup, on-brand outfits, and a list of on-brand props to bring (based on your shotlist).
Are you ready to do this?!
With these tips in your pocket, I hope you feel equipped to find the brand photographer of your dreams! Have any questions? I’d love to connect with you on Instagram – you can DM me @jadeboydphotography.