There are many various factors influencing the image, and even more tools to construct it consciously. From strategy design to organising individual photo sessions to managing social media accounts. There are many possibilities, however each of them should have the same goal – to make the brand remembered as one of a kind. What should you focus on to achieve it?
The brand’s strength lies in its people
Brands, especially small ones, usually reflect the people who create them. It applies to a one-person company producing handmade jewelry, an aesthetic medicine clinic, or an architecture office founded by two friends after graduation. Character, goals and habits of the founders are likely to be reflected in the brand’s personality. When building brand strategy the first question you should ask is if the answer is just in front of you, and creating the strategy will be based on getting to know the people behind the brand. The next step is a clever organisation of this knowledge.
If the brand fits the description above (although this is not the only case) it’s worth considering organising a professional photoshoot that captures individuality of owners and employees. After all, it’s hard to think of a better way to tell a story of a brand, than showing who stands behind it. Of course, image building is a process that requires action on many levels, but at the beginning of your PR activities such a photo session may be rewarding.
When considering this solution, it is worth remembering that the photos of the people behind the brand shorten the distance between the customer and the service provider. A professional photoshoot allows potential consumers to see the nature of the brand, not through words, but through photos that tell a silent story. Especially this is important in professions of public trust, where the link between the specialist and the user has a unique character.
High quality photos allow your customers to get to know you better from the very beginning, shorten the distance and encourage contact. They show that there aren’t any unnecessary boundaries. After all, a brand is more than just a service, it is a unique experience.
Authenticity is the key to success
Another element to consider when planning your branding activities is capturing authenticity. Until recently, everything published in the Internet, newspapers and billboards had to be perfected. Smooth, flawless, without anything showing that in the photo there are ordinary people, not some divine beings. Free apps enable anybody to correct your wrinkles, broken capillaries, and even the line of your thighs or biceps. There are available filters that may change the look of anything captured by your camera.
Meanwhile, it is 2020 and even the biggest brands famous for personifying perfection, like Victoria Secret, realized that there was no point in deluding people with unfeasible flawlessness any longer. In 2018, they hired a model with vitiligo for their catwalk for the first time, and in 2019 a plus size one. For the fashion giant H&M hiring models of various ethnicities and figures has already become the norm, although a few years ago it seemed out of the question. These types of activities change public opinion and influence on the current canon of beauty. They show that in fact no one is as perfect as the models in the commercials. Even themselves.
The Polish market is also slowly joining this movement. There are more and more fashion brands that present their collections in different shapes. A young brand Nago is a great example of this trend. In their catalog fitted bodysuits are presented on girls of sizes 34 and 42. A company Muuv in their collection 2019/20 gave up using Photoshop and opted for naturalness. Trends clearly indicate that it’s time to leave perfect shapes, non-existent pores and depilated bodies in the past and start showing real people.
Here we’d like to mention that striving for naturalness does not have to mean not using Photoshop and ready filters at all. However, it’s important to pay attention that these tools did not change reality. After all, the photographer’s job is to show the model in the most favorable light. The art of this profession is to apply corrections that will emphasize the unique character of a person and make them special.
The uniqueness of tailored photos
There is also another aspect of authenticity that most brands now face. Currently photos from free image banks like Unsplash and Pexels are flooding the Internet. We all know that this is a convenient solution. One click of a mouse gives you an access to a million beautiful photos, often of the highest quality. Unfortunately, there is one but… Anyone can use these sources without limitations and as a result many different brands use the
same photos to present themselves. As building the brand image aims to distinguish it and show it as one of a kind, by doing this you shoot yourself in the foot.
Of course, this does not mean that the use of photo banks will always result in image loss. Sometimes you need a photo to complete your social media post, create a mind map or a brand inspiration board. Then the free photos from legal sources may be quite useful. Just make sure that they are professional, aesthetic and realistic. Times when the whole family laughs together over the salad on the table are long behind us.
Working on the image is an art
With advanced technology everyone can feel like a professional. Sometimes a photo taken with a phone will have the same success on social media platforms, like a photo taken with professional equipment. You can say the same about running a Facebook or Instagram account. After all, everyone has access to these platforms. So why would you need to ask specialists for help?
Each person, more or less consciously, works on their image every day. Vocabulary used, non-verbal speech, type and nature of photos posted on social media contribute to enhancing a certain image. The art of PR is to do it following a certain strategy, to know what solution will bring the desired effect, what language to use to attract a particular social group. Learning the right communication takes many years.
In times of big competition on the market, image specialists make sure that their customers stand out from their competitors. A good PR specialist not only builds websites, writes Facebook posts or blog texts. They make sure all their actions tell stories. Moreover, they know how to manage the brand not only in times of prosperity, but also during a crisis, that can happen to any brand.
In PR every little thing matters and excellent management of the company’s communication can completely change the way it is perceived by potential customers. Our goal is always to build an image that will prove itself not only in a week, but also in a year and later.