About a year ago I decided to do a new website. Something that represented me and was unique to me. I wanted something to help me connect with me clients and so I started looking into different websites. Then I came across Julie Story and BOOM that was it.
I love how my website looks and I love that I get to feature Julie today on my blog! How amazing is that!! She is guest blogging today on my website and has some tips on Branding! I also have her website and blog listed below the tips…..so that means you must read all of her amazing tips and then head to her website. Perfect!
Branding- for Beginners
We know what we should to do.
Get a logo and website and a blog and cute packaging and business cards and a little dog we can instagram and buy $100,000 in new gear and and and….
Wait, I don’t have a dog. Uh Oh.One of the biggest road blocks to moving newer photographers moving their business to the next level is the seeming endless piles of things they feel they need to get designed in order for us to be a success. My motto has always been, find the lilly pad across the pond without working 100 hours a week, sacrificing relationships, not showering for 3 days and eating cookie dough until 3 in the morning ….while editing.
Girls, let down the greasy hair bum because you are about to get a hurts so good branding boost.Here are some step by step instruction for those who are 1-3 years into your photography business and feel lost in the endless needs of a brand.
STEP ONE: Set time aside every week for setting a vision for your business.
“..but I need a new website today, that is what will get me jobs!”
It’s very hard to figure out where we are going if we don’t have a destination. It’s time to set ourselves with a target to aim for.We plan, our week, our life, our kids back to school outfits but somehow in the mix of matching hair bow and knee high socks we don’t plan for the vehicle that gets us to the next stage in life- our business. Figure out specifically where you want to be in the next three years and work backwards at how you are going to get there.
STEP TWO: Make a plan to get there: BE DETAILED.
“… I am an artist. I like everything organic, including my non-fat-non-dairy-non-coffee-latte from my recycled cup”You won’t get to where you want to go without a strategy. Part of that includes breaking down you biggest needs and setting aside the funding to make those needs happen.The following are a list of needs most newer photographers have when getting started.
Decide what is your top need and plan shoots specifically for your branding needs! Make choices to save from every job you book until you reach your goal. Work backwards from the goal and plan to succeed.
STEP THREE: Build relationships.
“… but I need my logo on my camera strap this week or I won’t look like a pro!”
You don’t need everything designed perfectly today to be a success today.
The most important thing you can do for your brand today is to build genuine relationships in community, with prospects and with clients. Look for ways to help other people. Serve in communities, connect with photographers who are newer than you and help them. Building authentic relationships is just as important as having a strong design presence!
In community you will find- life long friends, people who want to see you succeed, people willing to lend you gear, people willing to trade for various services, connections to prospects, areas to serve, people willing to answer questions, resources for design information, the list goes on and on.
(Here are a few communities that have local meet up groups all around the country: http://shootandshare.com/community, https://www.facebook.com/Pursuit31 and http://showiteer.com/)
STEP FOUR: Use what you’ve got.
“… but I don’t have anything at all. Nothing. In fact my dog is ugly and I have no cookie dough…”
The internet loves ugly dogs. Google it.
The brand is powerful, but you are more powerful than a fancy font combination. Allow yourself to be free in your mind for just a moment of things you think you need in order to move forward. What are the lilly pads sitting right in front of you? What can you use today as a tool to help get you to where you want your brand to be tomorrow?
Money is not always the answer. Money gives you options but necessity is the mother of invention and she is always pregnant. The people around you may just have the keys to get you moving towards where you want to be and better yet, you might be the key to moving someone else further. Be willing to serve, love and bless and in the process you’ll find solutions to things before there is ever a problem!
Check out Julie’s amazing work!
My amazing logo she designed!