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Hi, I'm Tokelo...

I’m a social media loving, content marketing expert, that enjoys educating others & elevating businesses. I also really like taking road trips, Two Dots & peanut butter ice cream. 

I've turned my love for story-telling into a 6-figure business using marketing strategies that I now get to share with you... and just by the way, I enjoy sharing all I've learnt over a cup of tea.

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Your brand photos are one of the best ways to bring your brand to life! The photos that you use on your website, social media, flyers, etc. are how you choose to show off your brand aesthetic, personality, and even your work. They are the first real peek into what your brand is all about!

As important as your brand photos are, we realize that the photoshoot can be somewhat intimidating. It may be your first big photoshoot, you may not know your photographer very well, or you may just be uncomfortable having your picture taken. We all get a little bit nervous, but there are lots of ways to assure you feel comfortable and get the most out of your brand photoshoot! We’ve pulled together some of our favourite tips to help you pull off your own brand photoshoot with pictures you’ll love for years to come!

Here is a look at 7 tips to help you better prepare for your brand photoshoot today:

1. Pick a colour palette for your shoot and stick to it

This is most important because this will determine your locations as well as your outfits and props. For instance, if your colour palette is white, grey, and black, then picking an outdoor location with lots of trees would not work best for you, because there would be too much green in your images. If you have a completely neutral brand, and you add in a large banner image on your home page with green grass and a blue sky, your website won't look so neutral anymore! City scenes and coffee shops are usually great locations for neutral colour palettes.

2. Think about where you need to use the images and plan accordingly

Are you wanting images for your social media, or are you refreshing your website? Knowing where the images are going to go is crucial for getting the most out of your photoshoot. For Instagram or your Facebook profile photo, you will need squares proportions, but for website banner images or Facebook cover photos, you will need long horizontal images. For website photos, think about whether or not you want to put text on top of your images. If so, then you will need a good bit of open space on your image to do so. Think about how many pages you will have on your website, and how many images you would like on each page. You can even create a shot list for your photographer, so that you know for sure you are getting all the images you need!

3. Create a mood board for your shoot

Based on your brand aesthetic and colour palette create a Pinterest board with outfit ideas, location ideas, and just the overall feel for your photoshoot. Share this with your photographer ahead of time so they can plan ahead to help you choose locations that will give you the best photographs for what you want.

4. Create a Pinterest board of pose ideas

Next, create a separate Pinterest board for posing ideas. I suggest making this board separate, so you don't have to worry about colour or aesthetic and get it confused with your mood board. This board is simply for posing ideas! Let's be honest, we've all been there! That moment where we stand or sit where the photographer tells us to, then immediately freeze and feel awkward with what we should do next. Having pose ideas ready to go will make you feel so much more comfortable and relaxed! You can share it with your photographer and he/she can help you get into the pose. On your Pinterest board, study how people set up the shots.  How are the props set up? How is the person turning their head, or what are they doing with their hands, etc.

5. Keep it classic when it comes to your clothes, hair and make-up

You want these images to last a long time, so keeping everything somewhat timeless is key. Don't wear anything too trendy, or do anything outside of the norm for your hair and makeup, unless that is on-brand for you. I would suggest keeping your colours fairly neutral and try not to confine yourself to a season either, such as wearing a really wintery or really summery outfit. Also, think about bringing some accessories with you to switch things up. For instance, wear a white t-shirt, then bring a cardigan, scarf, jacket, kimono, etc. to quickly and easily change up the look.

6. If you are allowed multiple outfit choices then wear your least favourite first!

Like we talked about earlier, you'll probably always feel a little bit nervous at the beginning of your photoshoot. We all do! It may take a few minutes to get warmed up, so wear your least favourite outfit choice first, and save your favourite look for last, when you are comfortable, and the jitters are gone!

7. Have fun and be yourself!

It’s easy to tell when someone is having fun with their photoshoot, and when someone feels uncomfortable. Before your photoshoot, crank up some tunes and dance out your jitters or have some champagne to relax! You can even bring a friend with you to your shoot to help with poses, or to fix flyaway hairs, and to just make you feel more relaxed. Your pictures will turn out better, and you and your photographer will have a better experience too! Don't take yourself too seriously, and just have fun with it!

Author: Tokelo Motsepe

Tokelo Motsepe is the founder of @afrenai - an online

marketplace for sustainable brands made in Africa and

@afredigital - the online marketing agency that caters to

entrepreneurs looking to build brands that standout

and add value to the lives of their customers.

Follow her on Instagram, Twitter & Facebook