I’m not going to lie, the last week or so has pretty much been a DREAM!! We found out we were named to the Top 100 Photographers List by SLR Lounge, we found out we got the COVER of an amazing wedding magazine (more on that to come), we got to speak in the really BIG room at WPPI (and miraculously it was a FULL house!), and we just got featured in Rangefinder with an article on our new website & brand! Whew. Now that is a week I could live over & over! :) SO many weeks as a business over are just hustling, hard work, and grit without a lot to show for it. So it’s good every once in a while to get a week that gives you reason to celebrate!!
But enough about us! I don’t want to just put up this post about US being featured. There is no point in posting unless we can find a way to help YOU guys in the process too. So I wanted to share six of the tips that we talked about in the magazine (3 from us & 3 from our designer-genius-bestie Jen Olmstead) that everyone should consider when they are looking to rebrand! Here we go!
1. Start With Why. Ask yourself what you actually love and what you stand for, and the rest has a way of falling into place. Our creative decisions were made so much easier when we did that. The things that didn’t “feel right” were clear, and we knew what components were needed to resonate with our brand values.
2. Eliminate “supposed to” from your vocabulary. Supposed to is SUCH a toxic word in our businesses. Stop worrying about what’s popular or successful right now because that can change on a dime. Instead, carve a path that isn’t there yet, because in doing that you’ll make yourself a market of one.
3. Hire a designer who specializes in the style you’re looking for. Just like a bride shouldn’t hire us if she doesn’t LOVE black & white photography, we shouldn’t hire a designer who specializes in an entirely different look we’re going for even if everyone else is using her. Be willing to go through -as Jen would say- 47 different search tabs before you finally find yourself saying “Oh there you are!! I’ve been waiting for you!”
1. Show off what sets you apart. Make sure that’s clear to your viewer as soon as possible in every aspect: the images you choose, the words you write, the layout of your site, and even the color story you tell. Justin & Mary realized that in a world of white, pretty and clean, they were dark, moody, romantic and lasting. When their ideal client opens her 20th “wedding photographer” website, it’s immediately going to set them apart.
2. Overwhelmed? Unsure? Don’t Be Afraid to Keep it Simple. If you’re not feeling ready for your “forever brand” yet, strip your website down to the essentials, focus on attracting your ideal client and figure out what makes your brand tick. Some of the most successful photographers in the world have minimalist websites, simple, clean logos and focus on showing the best of what they shoot.
3. Give the designer a little breathing room to create. Communicate your overall vision along with any non-negotiable specifics as best you can, then step aside a bit. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had a client say, “I could never have come up with something that fits me this well!” and how rarely I’ve had one say, “Boy, I’m so glad I paid you a lot of money to follow my paint-by-numbers instructions!”
So there you go! 6 Tips for getting the most out of starting to work on a new brand!
**If you need more help on marketing & putting yourself out there for your most Ideal Client, be sure to check out our ebook The Guide in our J&M Store!
**If you are looking for an AMAZING place to start with a new brand, be sure to check out the designs at Tonic Site Shop!
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