How to plan and prepare for your brand photoshoot


This post is continuing on the series I’ve been sharing over on Instagram Live the past few weeks about why getting visible in your business is so important in building a powerful and purpose-fueled brand.

Today’s topic is all about why having a brand photoshoot is one of the best investments you can make in your business and how to best prepare for it to ensure you not only get shots you look fabulous in and you’re super happy with; but also so you have shots that are an authentic reflection of you; your brand and how you want to show up in the world.

Ok, so first let’s talk about why having professional brand photography is so important.

1. Your vibe attracts your tribe.

Your vibe attracts your tribe! Your goal with your professional photos should be for them to capture the soul essence of you, giving your clients the opportunity to make a split second decision about whether they vibe with you {or not}.

It’s better to do this quickly and swiftly so you only attract quality clients who want to work with you and are excited for you to help them reach their goals.

Over the long term this can save you a whole lot of time instead of you having to vet people who reach out to you, or worse, take on clients that you know are not a good fit.

2. Elevate your professional brand.

Having professional brand photos helps to elevate your brand a signifies a level of professionalism about you and your offerings.

While it’s fine to be sharing more candid / casual style shots on your social media; your website, where you are the face of your brand {AKA your online business card}, speaks volumes about you to your potential clients and collaborators, letting them know you mean business!

3. They capture your unique blend of magic.

Your brand photos should be an authentic reflection of you and everything you stand for.

Just as they should attract your dream clients to you, they should also capture your unique blend of magic to support carving out your niche in the online world.

It’s important to remember that while there a million other coaches online, there is only one YOU.

When planning for your photoshoot, get creative about how you can design a shoot that will capture the soul essence of you, helping you to stand out from other people who, on a surface level, may be doing something similar.


Ok, let’s dive into how you can plan and prepare for your brand photoshoot to ensure you get the most of your shoot and result in images that will really support you taking your brand and business to the next level.

1. Do an audit of what kinds of shots you need and for what purpose.

  • For your website shots, work out if you need horizontal shots with a wide angle - this is often the case with the Squarespace websites I design for my clients, with most of their templates catering for this style of shot.

  • How many shots do you need? Work out the number of pages on your website and add up how many images you will need to fill these out. It’s also best to think about what elements you need on your homepage and whether these will need images also.

  • Same also applies for social media - how many shots will you need to support your social channels looking fresh?

  • Consider the background you need your shots to be on in order for it to cohesively fit with your website and the rest of your brand touch points. I’ve made this mistake before and without taking into account the background I was shooting on meant that a lot of the shots couldn’t be used. This is costly mistake so I recommend getting clear on the aesthetic you’re after so you can plan around your shoot location accordingly.

  • Create a shoot list of all the shots you need and in which scenario eg. standing shots, shots with your laptop at a cafe etc. That way, during your shoot you can easily move through your shoot list ensuring that you capture everything. Some photographers will take the lead on this which is great, but other times they will be relying on you to ensure you have the shots you need. Having a list to work through will ensure you can be efficient on the shoot and not waste time {given you’ll likely have a set time period}.

2. Create a Pinterest moodboard.

Create a ‘secret’ board on Pinterest and start gathering inspiration for your shoot with the vibe you’re going for as well as the shot styles you are hoping to create.

This will help your photographer considerably and also make sure that you know in your mind the kinds of poses and vibe you need for your shoot.

This will be particularly important if you’re not used to being in front of the camera - it’s not as effortless as some people make it out to be!

3. Determine what props you need.

Based on your shot list and the inspiration / vibe you’re going for, determine what props you’ll need - do you need your laptop / coffee / green juice / confetti?

Keep in mind that any fun / quirky elements you add will ensure the shots capture your unique blend of magic - so this your creative license to have fun with it and create something amazing!

Take a note of the props you need and start organizing these well in advance of your shoot so you're not stressing out over this the day before (or on the day of) your shoot!

4. Determine the best location for your shoot.

Hopefully your photographer should have some ideas on locations for your shoot based on the kinds of shots / mood you want to create, but regardless it’s best to be prepared and have some of your own suggestions so that you can ensure you’re getting exactly the style of shots you’re after.

I recommend going on a location scouting trip to start sussing out potential options and building a shortlist of possible locations.

Also consider the time of day you will be shooting and whether it will be suitable for you to shoot at your desired location at that specific time i.e if you’re planning to shoot at a coffee shop, you’d want to ensure you’re not planning it for peak times when it’s super busy.

5. Select your outfits.

Planning your outfits well before your shoot will save you a lot of stress than randomly selecting something from your closet the day before.

You’ll want to consider:

  • Your location - so you select outfits that won’t clash or compete with the background.

  • Which colors highlight and suit your features / which styles will flatter your figure.

  • Your brand - what style of outfits will authentically represent you and your brand?

  • Your dream clients - will they be drawn to? What visual cues can you give them to be someone they consider to be likeminded?

6. Look your best on shoot day :: invest in beauty / self-care prep.

To ensure you look your best on shoot day, invest in plenty of beauty and self-care in the lead up. Your brand shoot is likely a big investment, so make the most of it and plan accordingly so you look your best and feel fabulous!

Beauty & self-care prep list:

  • Book your hair appointment in advance.

  • Book you waxing / nail appointment.

  • Consider if you will you get your hair / make-up done on the day or do it yourself? I suggest going for a natural look as opposed to being 'done up' as you want your dream clients to be able to relate to you. So unless you're really terrible at doing your own make up, I'd opt for doing it yourself.

  • Avoid alcohol 1-2 weeks prior to your shoot so you can ensure your skin is glowing!

  • Commit to a regular workout schedule so you're looking fabulous on shoot day.

  • Invest in loads of self-care in the lead up so you're not showing up on shoot day feeling frazzled and stressed - it will show in your photos!

Let me know in the comments: what are your best tips to plan and prepare for a brand photoshoot?

Are you ready to start confidently showing up online and sharing your message with the world?

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Rachel Gadiel