Why should you show your face in your business?
The infamous KNOW, LIKE and TRUST! Sometimes I feel like a parrot, continually saying this phrase and over and over again. And I'm not the only one parroting this phrase as well, every business owner that helps with branding, marketing, design, coaching... These are very key points to understanding the buyers journey. When people know, like and trust you they are more than likely to either purchase from you or refer you.
If someone doesn't know you, or like you and definitely if they don't trust you, why would they ever choose you?! How often have you purchased something based on someone else's recommendation? Take Opera's Book Club, there are many people that will read whatever she recommends on that list, why? Because we know her, like her and trust her judgements are going to provide us with something good.
Then just the opposite, how often have you been turned away by those sleezy salesmen headshots?! Or stopped from purchasing something after you talk to someone who did get that and it turned out bad?
As small business owners, especially when you're just starting out, you need to put yourself out there at some capacity. It is a scary thought to show up as you are, the real and authentic you. But people need to see you, even when we are given referrals by a friend, most likely you're still going to look up the business and see if it aligns with your own values.
Yes you do need to show your product, show what the user gets when they receive your product. Showing how it will make them feel after using those products, you want people to see themselves with your products or working with you. That end consumer photos are also important to show, that is part of the buyers journey. Showing your product or service addressing their pain points. This is what you will typically see with big product photos like Nike, they show how you use the product in an athletic capacity; sweating, strong and capable.
Big businesses don't need to show themselves anymore, their story is you the consumer and how they make you feel with their products. With small businesses you don't have that big brand awareness and you need to be the face of your small brand. This is where the story of "the little guy" thrives. The story of who that business is starts with this very personal story of triumph of hard and near impossible trials. Now do you need this big story, no! A relatable story and real story of you creates connections and starts the journey of knowing, liking and trusting in you.
What better way to share about yourself, share your business values than with images of yourself. When I look at my own Instagram metrics, I see a lot more engagement on my posts with photos of me than photos of my clients. I try to balance my feed with images of clients to share what my photography looks like, but I also mix it with myself and sharing somethings about myself. A lot of statistic analysis is supporting the same thing of images with people stop the eye more than stock images.
While I love a great product photo, or a pretty flower and landscape photo, I do find myself stopping more and reading more about what the business owner has to say when I see a photo of them doing something that is engaging. When I read what they have to say I can connect with them on their topic and then I want to come back and either buy from them or refer them.
Let people KNOW you. Not everything needs to be shared in your life, just pick a few things and talk about those few things over and over again.
Let people LIKE you. The real and authentic you. Don't try to be someone else that person is already taken, you're an original.
Let people TRUST you. Share your knowledge and gain trust that you are the right expert that they have connected with.
Lastly, I want to touch on the fears we have about showing our faces and ourselves.
What if they judge me and hate me? Well then they aren't your clients anyways, you don't want that energy in your life and to be working with them. You will never be able to please that person, so don't even try.
But I need to lose 10lbs, 20lbs, 30lbs before I take phots of myself. No, no you don't! Show up as your beautiful self just as you are now! Here's the truth, people don't care and they aren't seeing what you are hating about yourself. If you've shown a person and they know, like and trust, they don't care. If you make a big transformation, update your photos and share your wins and people will celebrate the journey you went through. People aren't thinking about you as much as we think they are, we are too busy thinking about ourselves, the hard truth.
You're personal branding photography session is about helping you create connections and show a person that everyone can get to know, get to like and trust.
Lindsay of Lindsay's Cookie Crew came to me for this very reason. She makes this beautiful custom cookies for clients, however her whole Instagram feed is just images cookie. Which I will say look absolutely stunning, but she was wanting to make a website and had no good professional images of herself to add her website.
Lindsay makes these hand designed cookies, that aren't cheap and she wants her clients to be able to trust her. She wants to be able to connect with mom's who need cookies for their kids birthday parties and she wants to connect with military families due to being a military family herself. She is putting herself out there for people to get to know her, then like her and trust that she will provide quality cookies for your needs.