Why Corporate Headshots Matter in Professional Branding

Establishing a powerfully persuasive professional brand is more important than ever. The modern business landscape is competitive across most industries. It doesn’t matter if you’re a seasoned executive, an employee, or an entrepreneur; how you present yourself to the business world can impact your success. Corporate headshots are an overlooked yet powerful tool in your personal brand arsenal. 

We’ll explore why corporate headshots are essential in professional branding. From presenting a trustworthy image in consumers’ minds to establishing harmony within your business, headshots can shape your or your organization’s brand. Let’s dive in and talk about how a great corporate headshot can help you stand out and even open doors to exciting new opportunities and experiences. 

The Impact of Corporate Headshots on Branding

Confidence is key when establishing professionalism and credibility.  But what confidence means and looks like for you is as unique as your fingerprint. Confidence can be warm, bold, understated, fierce. It’s not one size fits all.

The most effective headshots need to look like you – today. You may feel the urge to use an older headshot because you looked younger or thinner back then. Insecurities are natural, and everyone has them, but you must resist the urge to use an older headshot. When you eventually meet with potential clients, hiring managers, or partners, they will notice that you look nothing like your picture, and you will appear insecure and inauthentic.

First impressions are everything, and important business professionals will likely see your professional headshot image before even meeting you. It’s common to Google a person before meeting them these days, whether it be a potential colleague, client, or employee. You want to ensure that business connections see a confident, updated corporate headshot when they inevitably run your name through a Google search. 

An important thing to remember when getting your corporate headshot is that this picture is not for you. The goal is not to end up with a headshot that shows the least of your insecurities, but one that shows the most of your personality. The goal is not to take the prettiest picture and stick it in a wedding album. Corporate headshots are for other people –  clients, colleagues, employers, partners, vendors, etc. How do you want to be viewed in the professional world? 

woman infront of an office with glass doors with her arms folded across her chest

Industry Specific Headshots

A strong brand image is essential, no matter the industry. Many people think all attorneys should look stern and imposing, perhaps in a shot of them with a scowl and arms folded across their chest. If a rough and tough image is vital to you, an excellent professional photographer can help you convey it. However, times have changed, and you don’t have to feel pigeonholed into a particular pose or image for your corporate headshots based on your industry. 

You may want to showcase a warm and approachable image for your legal office or CPA firm. The critical thing to consider is how you want the world, your customer base, and your potential partners to see you. What makes you unique? Having a frank discussion with your photographer about how you want the professional world to view you will help them assess what poses, facial expressions, clothing, backgrounds, and other essential elements to bring to the table. 

A great professional photographer should partner with you to help bring your positive brand image to life. Ultimately, whether you’re an engineer, a doctor, an architect, or any other busy professional, your brand identity is entirely in your hands.

Strategies For Effective Corporate Headshots

Step #1. Finding Your Headshot Photographer

The first step in securing an effective corporate headshot is finding the right photographer. Budget may be the deciding factor with both company and individual headshots. You should apply caution with this approach. Understandably, money is a consideration in everything, but investing in a proper headshot can help you get a leg up in a highly competitive marketplace. You may choose the cheapest option only to end up with a lackluster product. In that example, you’ll only spend more than is necessary when hiring a second photographer to redo the shots. 

Think of corporate headshots like all other marketing strategies. When you design a website, advertisements, or social media posts, you think deeply about your brand, product, or service. Corporate headshots are no exception. Headshots are more complex than hiring someone with a camera who can take pictures of people. You could ask your wacky cousin Joey to stop by the office with his new iPhone to take professional portraits if that were the case. But would you ask cousin Joey to design your website? 

Diversity is another key element in choosing the right photographer for corporate headshots. Many companies value diversity in their teams, as they should! But did you know that not all photographers are experienced in working with different skin tones? For companies looking for multiple headshots, you’ll want to ensure you’re working with an experienced photographer who can make your diverse staff look great!

You must find a photographer to make you and/or your employees comfortable. Nobody likes having their picture taken. Having a true professional in the room that can put people at ease will mean better brand-based marketing. The best way to find the right photographer is to talk with them, express your personal or company branding goals, and then agree on a reasonable set fee. 

Remember, your photographer will become your new marketing partner in showcasing your brand. Make sure you pick the right one!

Step #2. The Visual Elements

Let’s talk visuals.  Much in the same way a company has a unique “voice” as part of their brand, there may be a visual “look” you’re going for with your corporate headshots. How do you want those office headshots to look? What do you want them to convey? How can they properly showcase your brand in the visual elements? Maybe it will be about the outfits, background, facial expressions, or lighting. Maybe there’s an X factor that makes you stand out. We’ll work together to ensure your photos capture all of these elements in a cohesive, engaging way.  

There’s no wrong or right answer when choosing an outfit for the big day, even for the best executive headshots. Maybe formal attire is the impression you want to make, or perhaps you want something more casual. You can also choose a formal background with a casual outfit or vice versa. 

If diversity is one of your company’s core values, a professional photographer can help you capture that in your corporate headshots. Not everyone on the team is the same. Employees have different backgrounds, histories, personalities, and experiences. These can all be showcased in headshots. Not every headshot in a company photoshoot has to have the same background and pose for each employee. Diversity makes for a stronger organization, and the same is true for employee headshots. Some examples of showcasing a diverse team in headshots could be slightly different backgrounds, outfits, and facial expressions.

 The goal is individual authenticity, with a complimentary “tone” that fits your brand.

The Importance of Headshots on Different Platforms

There are usually three major platforms where others will see your corporate headshot: 

  • LinkedIn and Other Professional Networking Sites. Your LinkedIn profile is your digital business card. To optimize your LinkedIn headshot, ensure good lighting, a clutter-free background, and a genuine expression that will resonate with your brand. 
  • Company Websites and Other Marketing Materials. Headshots humanize your business. Incorporating headshots of your team on your website can promote trust and relatability with potential customers. Adding professional headshots to your marketing materials adds authenticity so that you won’t be another faceless corporation. 
  • Press Releases and Media Engagements. The right headshot lends you credibility just by existing. Including a headshot in press releases and media engagements allow audiences to associate a face with your authority and expertise. 

Kelly Ripa, Malala Yousafzai, Barrack Obama, and Paul Teutul Sr. are all great examples of influential figures who use headshots in the media to communicate their personalities and values. 

3 women sitting together going over a sett of blueprints in a professional yet relaxed setting

Invest in High-Quality Headshots

The significance of corporate headshots is more crucial than ever in a world where first impressions are usually digital. A well-crafted headshot can unlock doors to new opportunities and experiences. Confidence, authenticity, and approachability are vital in a compelling headshot. It’s not just a picture. It’s a visual representation of your identity, expertise, and values. It is a reflection of how you want to be perceived. Finding the right photographer is a crucial investment. They’re not just taking a picture. They’re your partner in translating brand identity into a visual masterpiece. Take charge of your brand’s narrative success and invest in a high-quality headshot today. Elevate your personal and professional presence by scheduling a shoot with Ben Krantz Photography. I’ll help you take your brand and story and capture it all in a click.

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