Why I chose to have new branding done.
“The best thing about a picture is that it never changes, even when the people in it do.” Andy Warhol
While I like this quote, it’s just not true about your author branding. You will change over time and need to keep updating your images along your writing career.
Looking back through all the blog posts and webpages on this site, I see that the first post I did was in April 2013. As I’ve tinkered with writing content and book products, shaping the offerings I have out there in the book market, I’ve changed physically. I had hair on my head and was clean-shaven, that has slowly reversed.
So, to keep in line with those changes, and because I wanted a website refresh, I decided to have new photos taken that reflect who I am now. Being a person who likes to shake things up along the way, I also decided to a website change which was long in overdue. I changed the logo, cover images and overall feel of the website, but more of that in another post.
“I’ve been in the publishing business long enough to know and understand how important a professional photo can be (just like a professional website) in making the right impression” – Jane Friedman
Get yourself a professional shoot done.
Many people find it easier to simply use amateur, candid photos for professional use, or worse, a screen capture from their laptop camera. If you’re serious about your writing career, you need to be more professional from the outset. Get yourself professional photos taken, and that means hiring someone who does it for a living.
A professional photo can help show you as a person who can be trusted because it will show yourself at your best. A good image can make people believe that you are professional and successful and that’s what you are trying to tell them about your author brand. Regardless of whether you write fiction or non-fiction you want your fans to trust you. A clean, well-taken photo adds to that overall feel along with a professional website.
It was an easy choice when it came to who to get to shoot my new brand images. I happen to be married to a professional photographer who specialises in getting the best out of people for their branding imagery. More of her work at Anneli Marinovich Photography
The brief was simple.
- No boring studio photos with grey backgrounds – I despise corporate headshots
- No abstract photos of me looking away from the camera (or looking at the camera through bushes!). Eye contact is important as I feel it engenders trust.
- Natural light
- I grew up on a farm and love nature, so it had to be outdoors
Being an introvert, I hate having my photo taken especially formal photos that involve me posing. Anneli quickly put me at ease by directing me in every photo to get the images I needed. She does this for a living so is used to getting the client the photos they want. That’s the reason you get an experienced photographer to do the job. They get the results on a consistent basis.
Getting new photos is a two-way collaboration that starts before a photo is taken. Organise a pre-shoot chat to discuss what your brand style is and what ideas you have. Answer any questions your photographer asks you because it will allow them to start visualising the shoot. Then trust them to get it done.
“A portrait is not made in the camera but on either side of it.” – Edward Steichen
I go into more depth about the need to have a great author platform out there. Click here to read the articles – Writing Advice
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