A Personal Branding Photo Experience For Women
What do a business coach, floral designer, travel agent, and divorce counselor have in common?
They’re entrepreneurs who need to attract their ideal clientele.
Today, more than ever before, we’re going for it. Changing our priorities and even our career path. We need branding photos for that.
The events of the past two years have changed us, or at the very least, helped us to focus on the most important things in our lives. We’ve come to realize that our time should be spent on doing what we love.
What exactly is a “personal brand”?
It’s not as elusive and abstract as you think!
It's an ongoing pursuit that begins with figuring out what you're passionate about and then aligning everything around that.
It’s showing up visibly, consistently, and in ways that highlight your uniqueness. It’s your stories-- the things you say, do, what others say about you, and your visual resume.
Pictures are a good place to start
I’ve noticed among my recent female clients and people I’ve spoken with, that there’s both the knowing that good photos of themselves is essential, and the fear of actually doing it!
So I decided to create a low-risk opportunity...a day of “branding mini-sessions” just for women. They could dip their toe in the water. No big commitment or big expense. They could try it out and hopefully get some fresh new photos they loved.
The event was held at a cool newer coffee shop/event venue in downtown Aurora (www.society57.com). The women had a choice of three simple “sets" that best fit them and their clothing.
Preparing my clients is super-important to success of this and all photo shoots. I know that they feel uncertain and even vulnerable.
For this event the women received emails and calls with lots of information to help. I encouraged them to reduce stress of getting themselves ready by taking advantage of my hair and make up artist who would be on site.. A few were happy to take me up that offer and enjoyed their time with the amazingly talented Carla G
These women decided to just do this
She’s a marketing professional who admits to being over-critical of herself. I couldn’t believe how gorgeous her RED hair was! I knew I had to emphasize that natural beauty by contrasting it against the background.
The colorful wall hanging was the perfect compliment to her colors and helped everything to pop.
After seeing her photos later, Susan told me she truly felt she looked gorgeous in her new photos! I'm so happy for that sentiment!
Dee is in the process of pivoting from her career as a pharmacist to back in the classroom with the goal of becoming a functional medicine professional. Her passion lies in patient advocacy and acting as a health consultant/coach.She needs to develop this new brand and has been thinking about doing this (photo session) “for awhile”. She loved that she could try it out with me!
She recently had her second child, a baby brother for her teenage daughter. Marcela loves everything about travel. She’s a flight attendant, and also growing her travel agency business venture. A Disney expert, she dressed the part for her session which include her Mouse ears and her suitcase (matching her logo). Her photos showed her enthusiasm and fit into the brand so well.
Flowers are her passion! Like many of the women I know she does two jobs. This session was focused on her Floral Workshop business. When asked to describe herself her words were “sociable, self-confident, and warm-hearted”. I especially loved her smile and warmth that just flowed from her. The self-described qualities are most-definitely reflected in her final photos.
She’s an established attorney out of Naperville who I know and have used services. She just needed updated headshots for her professional profiles and business website. As always, Catherine dressed beautifully and professionally with a bit of color. I have never seen her look anything but polished. I loved that she allowed me to do a couple more casual poses with her.
Karen describes herself as a “recovering attorney” whose role is to help women navigate divorce as a counselor. She describes herself as confident, compassionate, and trustworthy. She made no bones about telling me how much she normally hates herself in pictures, lol. (I love the challenge). In the end she was happy with how they turned out!
Like nearly all the women I asked before this day, her biggest concerns were in deciding what to wear and also that she would not like the photos. It would definitely be hard to not love HER! I immediately was taken by her personality and warmth.
She's transitioning to be a business coach, and saw this photo shoot as an opportunity to increase her visibility with pictures she liked! They would be used on her new website. She came ready to kill it and really did.
I loved how she brought a friend with a discerning eye to help choose her favorites. It IS hard to be objective about yourself.
I liked this gorgeous woman immediately! She's a mom, career-oriented, and smart! Her job in education is that of school consultant in behavioral support.
She wanted a few fresh photos that weren’t stuffy or corporate-looking. She feels good about her appearance and also was concerned about what she should wear. I thought her choice reflected her laid back qualities well!
And they loved their new photos
The day was fun and fast-paced for myself and the participants. Everyone was positive about their photos! Given the pre-session feedback I got from them, few of the women expected to be pleased with photos of themselves. I knew they would be surprised and pleased though.
My hope is that all of them realize they ARE amazing women with beautiful qualities that deserve to be celebrated. And maybe they even felt a little better about themselves after this experience.