This past weekend I developed a WordPress website for a Photographer friend. She is like a cousin to me, as in long, long, long-time family friends. And she is a truly talented photographer. Working with her on developing her new website made me realize how many businesses and organizations take professional photography for granted. When really they should be using photography as a tool to build their brand’s image.
I built her website using WordPress with the exact same platform and available tools as I can use and have used to build others. What makes her project so different however is how the quality and professionalism of the images truly makes the website look like a million dollars.
Here are my Simple Tips for Better Business Branding with Images:
Choose a style and commit
Branding is critical in business. People come to recognize you via small indicators, sometimes even subconsciously (think of the famous yellow arch). So next time you’re choosing an Instagram filter, pay attention.
Choose something that looks good, and also sets a general tone consistent with the goals of your business, i.e. you don’t want a comical filter if you’re in a serious industry. Not only can it improve the look of your photos, but your Instagram account itself will show a consistency that will be appealing to the eye.
Invest in A FEW or even JUST ONE amazing photo(s) to showcase your business
I know that small businesses and entrepreneurs don’t have enormous budgets. And I’m not saying your whole website needs to be as beautiful as a professional photography website. But, why not make every dollar count and invest in a few amazing images to showcase your company in its best light? You’d be surprised by the flexibility in use for these images. The same one image can be used in many different ways for:
- Web Banner
- Facebook Banner
- Twitter Banner
- YouTube Banner
- Google+ Banner
- Online Directories Profile Images
- Professional Head-shot
People may ask, what should the pictures be of? The answer differs depending on your industry. If you have a storefront, I highly recommend you take pictures that capture the ambiance of your store, products and services. If you are an entrepreneur providing virtual services, the only thing I have to present is myself and my laptop. As such, I made sure I had a great logo and a professional head-shot. I use these two items in all my visual branding tools. As a solopreneur who doesn’t sell products, I AM my brand.
One professional image = multiple uses. Added bonus: building your brand the right way!
A picture is worth a thousand words
If your main website banner is fuzzy and outdated, what does that say about your business and the goods/services you provide? Is there unintentional “noise” in the background that could be fixed with a little image-retouching? These are things small business owners tend to brush aside without realizing the subconscious impact these slight variances could have to potential customers.
Click here to see Lauren Hardy Photography’s website (please keep in mind we’re still in development stages).
If you take anything away from this blog, please have at least one professional photo taken that properly represents your business on your website’s homepage and your social media banners. I promise it will be worth it!
Until next time (and Happy Thanksgiving!),