Personal Branding: What is it and why you need it?

Personal branding is a buzzword that gets thrown around a lot these days especially on social media but what does it really mean and how does photography help you to develop a strong personal brand? 
Let’s start by clarifying a key point - you ALREADY have a personal brand.  Whether we have consciously created this brand or not, we all have one. It is who you are: your skills, personality, values, style, and actions.  Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon, says it “is what people say about you when are not in the room.” I like to interpret the room metaphor a bit further to add that branding is what you want people to feel first and then say about you after visiting your website, blog, social media accounts, or after doing business with you. 
So, how can photography help control your brand identity and leave people saying the right things about you?  First, by establishing your target client.  Not everyone who comes into contact with you is going to connect with your brand and that is ok.  You may have heard the saying, “a good brand repels as much as they attract.” This is such a great way of describing what a target client can do for you. Sure it can be polarizing but think of Steve Jobs. He likely lost business to Android and P.C. lovers by establishing a niche, however, he created an identity and not just product and, as a result, he was wildly successful. 
Once you know your audience, professional photography is one of the most powerful tools you can use to convey your personal brand. The visual marketing in today’s world is everywhere from digital outlets such as your website, LinkedIn profiles, Facebook cover photos, and daily posts on your Instagram feed and blog to printed materials like product packaging, brochures, flyers, advertisements, and even business cards.  With so many chances to reach your client visually, if you haven’t yet hired a professional photographer, you are missing out on some key branding opportunities! 
As your photographer, I work to ensure that the location, backdrops, lighting, posing, wardrobe and hair and makeup all work together to communicate the brand that you want your customers to connect with.  I work one-on-one with my personal branding clients to develop a vision for their images. Each image is unique and is entirely dependent upon the target client.  And, unlike traditional headshots where you are given one look that merely documents your appearance, personal branding sessions are designed to provide you with all the looks you need to convey your multi-faceted brand. We create images together that help your customers get to know you, and your business, better.  
If you are convinced you need to up your visual identity game but are terrified of getting in front of the camera, I can help you with that too!  With a wardrobe consultation, professional hair and makeup artist, and posing guidance, you will feel confident throughout your session.  And, images are retouched to enhance your look so you can rest confident that your best self will shine through.  All clients will see is the poised professional that you are – no matter if the camera typically makes you run for the hills. 
So what do you want the world to see when they look at you? Let me help them see the real you and what you contribute to this wonderful world.