Myth #1: All I need is a headshot.
The truth is, headshots aren’t enough these days. They just won’t reach your clients/audience/buyers/readers the way they used to. This is what Branding Photography is all about…showcasing YOU & your business.
Look, the reality is that people want to work with people. They don’t want to work with some stiff robot creature that seemingly has no personality. I know that sounded harsh, but think about it…think about how YOU decide who to work with. What’s one of the first things you look for?
A photo! of that person of course.
We will choose doctors, dentists, massage therapists, realtors, CPA’s, assistants, wedding planners, photographers, even pets, houses and clothing according to their photos.
Now just take a moment to think of all the things I didn’t even name… whew!
This is how we consume things nowadays. It’s all visual. But it’s gone even deeper than that. It’s all personality. People will choose to work with you or not work with you based on your personality both in photos and in person.So here’s what Branding photography does. It bridges that gap between in photo and in person.
When someone meets you for the very first time, you want them to already have a good sense of who you are and what you’re all about. If you have a canned cheesy grin plastered across your face in your photo, people won’t know what to expect.
People can tell it’s a fake smile.
They’ll be nervous to meet you, if they even do. And want to know what’s even worse? What if your photo is so outdated it doesn’t even look like you any more??
Myth #2: Professional headshots should be posed.
Posey, posey is passé. People are craving real. They don’t want to consume the posey, posey look anymore. They want to work with real people and get a sense of who you are before they even meet you.
Let’s take Lucille Ball for a quick case study:
Look at these two images and tell me which one you’re more drawn to?
In this case study, I've given you an example of an incredibly colorful, iconic character.
Lucille Ball has never been known for not having a personality...but look at the picture on the left, it's very nice but doesn't showcase her personality at all!
Now take a look at the image on the right, it's telling you a story! This photo draws you in. It doesn’t matter that it’s not in color and they’re not smiling, you want to find out more about these people and what they do!
Well, as it turns out, they starred in one of the best TV shows of all time and Lucille Ball happens to be a comedy legend. Read more about this case study here: Why I HATE traditional headshots.
Myth #3: Smiling in photos isn’t professional.
This couldn’t BE more false.
People are far more attracted to images of others smiling and enjoying what they do.
If you feel really uncomfortable smiling, start practicing. If you’re afraid to show your smile, it comes down to a self-esteem issue. We ALL have areas we don’t like about ourselves, we ALL beat ourselves up for the way we look, but do your best to look inward and realize your smile is worth showing off!
If this is a pain point for you, I suggest you start practicing by smiling in a mirror, take some selfies (that you don’t have to share), allow a loved one to take some candid photos of you while you’re out and about.
Your smile is worth showing off! And smiling is a universal language. Every person smiles and laughs, this is a natural reaction. Embrace it, love it and show it off!
**Quick disclaimer though...fake smiles are the worst. If you can’t smile for real, it’s hardly worth taking the photo. That sounds harsh but it’s true! Most people can spot a fake smile and it makes us instantly mistrust that person. We already feel lied to when we see a fake smile, because there’s nothing genuine or honest about being fake.
Myth #4: No one wants to see me.
Wow. False, false, false. Like I said earlier, people want to work with people.
Usually when someone says this it’s because of their own insecurity. And I totally get it! I don’t LOVE getting my photo taken either, but you know what? People do want to see you.
We are constantly searching for real.
Is this real chicken? Is this made of real silk? Is this what you really look like?
People want to know what you look like. In fact most buyers, clients, patients, & consumers in general choose WHO to work with, based on their photo.
We are naturally curious and we always want to see who’s behind the brand.
Think about Taylor Swift - one of the biggest names in show business.
Want to know the secret of why she’s so famous? (Besides brilliant intentional branding).
She shows you HERSELF. She shows you how she plays with her cats, what she’s like when she’s an audience member at a concert, how she plays cards with her family.
People not only want to see you, they want to see what you’re all about. Behind the scenes, what you do, where you go, what you love, what your reactions are to things… Think about what you consume, do you love seeing people and their lives?
Myth #5: I don’t need to keep my photos updated
Ugh, yuck. I want to chuck this myth right out the window!
Look, here’s the deal. High quality, up-to-date photos show that you care about your business.
When you don’t keep your photos updated, it gives the impression that you don’t care or you’re lazy.
Don’t let this be your first impression!
Would you want to work with someone who’s photo was seriously outdated? or would you pause and question their professionalism and whether or not they care enough to help you?
This would be my reaction.
Here’s the scoop, if you don’t look like your photo when someone meets you they will be unpleasantly surprised and in a split second have an instant level of mistrust with you.
You don’t look like you! Why should they trust you to help them?
I get fired up about these myths, because I know that for too long people have believed them. So here’s my encouragement to you...if you have believed any of these, stop now and start making changes.
You can do this!
Comment below and let me know;
Have you ever believed one of these myths? Or were you surprised to see one of these myths listed?