Personal Brand Case Study – Adelle Martin, Executive Coach for Women in Business
When I set up my photography business, I knew I didn’t want to only “take pictures” of people. I believe to take a worthy photograph, you have to tell the story of the person, or the people behind the lens. It’s the same with video; to genuinely make a person come alive on the screen, it’s essential to get to know you, your business and who your ideal clients are to be able to bring your personal brand and values to life.
Working with Adelle (Executive Coach – Helping Business Women be Smart, Sassy & Stronger through Menopause) brought home to me, as a photographer and videographer, the importance of working in partnership with someone to breathe life into their personal brand. Working with me is not about standing in front of a camera and plastering a fake smile on your face for a few headshots; there’s so much more involved.
Before we even get near a camera, I work with clients to build a partnership and I see the process as a collaborative team effort from start to finish.
The Graham Baker Photography Brand Journey
1. The Initial Consultation
Although in many cases I’d have already built a relationship with my clients, either through networking or through mutual acquaintances, the first consultation with you is a crucial step in the process. I’ll ask lots of questions about your business, including finding out your purpose & your reason ‘why’ (purpose) and what values are important to you, both personally and as a business owner.
You may already have your brand defined, but if not we will work together to lay down some foundations for you. Having a clear definition of your message, story & purpose will make all the difference to a successful shoot & ensure you get exactly what you need.
It’s not totally about you either. We also need to understand your audience/market:
Who is your ideal audience (who & where are they?) and how do you want to connect with them?
What problem are you solving for them?
How are they going to feel when you solve it?
How are you going to solve their problem?
As Adelle says, “I have been approached through networking through lots of different brand photographers, but what makes you different is you took the time to understand me, understand what I was looking for. And we just connected on values, and that’s the most important thing for me.”
2. Brand Analysis
“We agreed to work together and created a “mood board” to agree on the objectives of the brand shoot. We met several times before to ensure we were on track to meet the objectives.”
Adelle was keen to treat working together as a partnership, too, which always helps to ensure we’re always on the same page with ideas and progress throughout the project and enforces my understanding of the brand message and who Adelle’s ideal clients are.
“What really impressed me is that Graham took the time to really understand me and my brand; [he] completely exceeded my expectations.”
Building on the mood board is a key part of this stage; sharing ideas with you enables us to build a shoot list and a plan of action for shooting the photographs and the video. Although Adelle wrote her own scripts for her videos, this is absolutely something I can help you with too, especially if you’re not used to or comfortable with being in front of a video camera and knowing what you want to say yourself. I can provide a question template of the key points of what you want to talk about and of course guide you through the process as well as your responses.
If you’re happy for me to approach your clients, I can also create individual testimonial videos too. These can be edited to include in the main business story video or used separately in their own right (and great for sharing on social media and websites). There is nothing more powerful than hearing a positive review directly from a customer who is thrilled with the service you’ve provided to them.
I also make a point of coaching them to feel entirely comfortable with being in front of the camera for this, especially if they’re not familiar with the process.
4. The day of the shoot.
“The photoshoot involved me, clients and props! On the day Graham made us all feel natural and relaxed but more importantly that we all kept to the brief.”
All of the work we’ve put in so far has led to this day and I want to make sure you AND your clients (if part of the shoot) are comfortable and at ease. Of course, you don’t have to involve your clients – whether there’s one person or twenty people involved, everything will be planned out to make sure everyone feels happy with the process. With good planning, we will have an excellent idea of how long a branding photography session will take prior to the shoot. However the shoot itself can take as long as it takes to get it right and for you to be satisfied, so having a detailed brief means the whole thing runs smoothly and is considerably easier to manage on the day
“For my personal images, Graham was a great director ensuring that I kept to my own brief – I never felt rushed at all throughout the day.”
Final Words & Thanks.
It was an absolute pleasure working with Executive Coach Adelle and to see how she works with her clients to truly change their lives. I couldn’t have asked for better engagement throughout the whole process. I admire how Adelle was willing to work with me as part of a team to ensure that we got the best results for what she needed to connect with her audience and promote her brand.
Special thanks also to Rachel at BoConcept Canterbury Kent for the use of the store for the photoshoot! I have to say it’s a photographers dream with so much variety with all the layouts! Thank you again!
I’ll finish with these final words from Adelle about the project…
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