A business depends very much on its brand, but how does one go about building that? There are obviously elements such as color, logo, font choice, and other design elements — but what about the photography? Many brands overlook the power of executive headshots when it comes to branding.
That is a mistake. Executive headshots are a fast way to build brand image, without losing sight of the overall business mission. Every aspect of your business should reflect your brand and identity — so why not your headshot as well?
There are many ways to incorporate elements into your executive headshots for them to become a strong branding tool. It might be the backgrounds that are chosen, or perhaps the colors the staff wears. Another great way to show off your brand is to have contextual office shots taken, in order to demonstrate your brand’s uniqueness, as well as highlight the office.
The three main elements you need to keep in mind during the photo shoot are:
These are the three main routes through which you can build a compelling executive headshot that also becomes a brand asset. We’ve touched upon some of these elements briefly before, but let’s take a deeper look into how they can help you build your brand.
Wardrobe is important because it represents you as a person. Your business, in many ways, is an extension of yourself – and so is your wardrobe. This a subtle way to convey messages, and really show viewers what your brand is about.
If your brand tends to lean serious and professional, then you will likely need a suit and tie. However, if your branding is all about a casual and fun look, you can be a little more experimental with colors. Bear in mind that loud and bright colors can often be visually distracting, so it is better to play it safe on that end.
Work with your photographer, and ask for recommendations on colors, and styles based on the brand you are trying to convey. Your photographer can help you develop a look that conveys what you want, while still being a great photo, free of distractions.
Believe it or not, your pose matters. Your stance and expression are a very powerful way to convey branding in a meaningful, yet subtle manner. Some people choose a more dominant pose, such as hands on the hip, to convey the power of their brand. Others choose a more subtle pose, such as arms folded, leaning back to show viewers that they are laidback, yet serious. There are a lot of different ways you can pose, but before you decide to take an executive headshot, think about what you would like to communicate.
Rather, think about what your brand would like to communicate, and come up with poses. Again, your photographer will be the best resource, as they can tell you what works from past experience, and what is not as successful. Really work with them before the headshot process so that they understand what message you are wanting to convey, and they can help you craft pose ideas accordingly.
The third element, background, is the one that is often overlooked. Many people are so caught up in the other details of their professional headshots that they tend not to focus on this aspect. But the background you choose can have a major impact on your branding, so it is important to take a look at that. You can choose to do office shots, since that highlights what makes your branding special, while still retaining a professional feel.
You might also choose to a background that showcases some of your interests and humanizes you a bit for the viewers. Some people choose to do nature headshots so that viewers can see they like the outdoors, while others choose to have elements in the background, such as family photos as a point of prominence.
There are a multitude of options available, so it is really about what you feel comfortable with. Do not be afraid to ask your photographer for tips, advice, and really work with them to construct these shots. Executive headshots are a great branding asset, but they must be done thoughtfully to really get a full return on the investment.