Advice for Staying Calm and Prepared Before Your Brand Photo Shoot

14 March 2023

If you’re a small business owner with a limited budget, you’ll want your brand to look amazing in photos, yet photography is probably not your forte! How to prepare yourself for that all important brand photo shoot then? Enter: this list of pre-shoot essentials! I’ve compiled them from my experience as both a photographer, and owner, of a small business. Follow these tips before your next photo shoot and you’ll be well on your way to getting some gorgeous shots that reflect who you are and what makes people love buying from you.

Make sure your brand story is clear

It’s important to make sure that your brand story is clear. Ask yourself:

  • What are the key words that describe my brand?
  • How do I want people to feel when they think of me and my products/services, and why do I want them to feel that way?
plan for your brand photo shoot

Know your brand identity inside and out

Your brand is a reflection of you, and the photos are the first impression that consumers will have of your company. If you don’t know your brand inside and out, how can you expect to communicate it effectively? Establishing your brand personality and how it should feel to your audience is key.

tailored womenswear brand photography

Know where and what you want to communicate with your photos

The first step to feeling prepared is knowing exactly what you want to communicate with the photos. This is where many people get stuck, because they don’t know how or when they will use their brand photos.

Here are some examples of what you might be looking for:

  • You need to illustrate the craft of your processes
  • You need a hero image for your new campaign / event/ programme/ product line
  • You want your business card image to be memorable and easy-to-read at first glance–and maybe even convey something about your company or industry!
  • You want your audience to get to know you

Set a timeline and define a budget

Before you book your first photo shoot, it’s important to know that with a bit of forward planning, your brand shoot can be a wonderful reflection of what you do. A shoot is better with a bit of time to prepare – as much as you might feel like you need your photos yesterday. Have a realistic timeline in place, and work backwards from there with your photographer.

You should absolutely discuss budgets beforehand, taking props, venue hire, outfits, models etc into account – as a business photographer I aim to be resourceful and not overspend on a budget, while still getting the most out of your shoot.

Be ready with ideas on where to shoot, but let your photographer lead

You might have excitedly listed all sorts of ideas about where to shoot – or you might prefer to trust your photographer’s judgement on the perfect location. Either way, start thinking of imaginary locations that would be a great and aspirational location for your clients to imagine where they might use your product or services, or where you would want to have them see you producing your work.

Get Inspired

Scrapbook, moodboard or use Pinterest to gather ideas from similar brands, and concentrate on the look, emotions your business should evoke and the aspirations your audience have.

Bring props, wardrobe and styling items that help illustrate your brand story

  • Bring props that help to illustrate your story, in your brand colours.
  • Bring or buy clothing that reflect your brand look and colours.

    Planning & Booking Your Brand Photo Shoot

    If you’re thinking about booking a shoot for your brand, familiarising yourself with these tips is a great first step. You can also download a free shoot planning guide from me to help you plan better in the days beforehand. Stay calm and don’t stress – if you’re completely stuck and would like a bit more guidance, I am only a phone call away and happy to help you plan your shoot. The more prepared you are, the more likely you’ll get beautiful images that reflect your brand accurately!

    Meet Frances, London Lifestyle & Portrait Photographer

    meet Spirited photography

    Hello! I'm Frances, founder of Spirited Branding and Portrait Photography, London. I'm here to offer you inspiring portraits using my tried and tested tools to challenge camera shyness, alongside curated branding imagery that will up-level your brand. Spirited works mostly with change-makers, ethical businesses and creatives.

    I invite you look over my headshot and portrait photography or branding photography services, and would love to help you with your next branding shoot!