How to Know When to Hire a Brand Photographer vs. DIY Branding Photos

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I'm Catie, a Dallas-based personal branding photographer for creative entrepreneurs. You can expect to find personal branding and business tips.

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How to Know When to Hire a Brand Photographer

Personal Branding Photography

You may be wondering how to know when it’s time to hire a brand photographer.

I get it. It’s confusing. When you know you’re ready?

Trying to DIY your photos sounds doable but kind of overwhelming. You’d like to hire a photographer. But is it the right time to hire a brand photographer?

Well, what if I told you that there’s a time and a place for both DIY photos and professional brand photos?

I hope this blog post can help you determine when you should be hiring a photographer and when you should be DIYing your photos.

When to DIY a brand photoshoot vs. when to hire a brand photographer 

There is definitely a time and place to book a professional branding photographer. Brand photographers aren’t just portrait photographers – we’re also brand strategists. The job of a brand photographer is to learn about your mission, goals, and vision for your business, and then create photos that reflect the core business brand. In doing so, we create photos that help attract your ideal client.

But, there’s also circumstances where DIYing your photos makes sense. As fun as it would be to have a personal photographer following you around, it’s not very realistic or practical.

Here are a few scenarios that could happen to you:

  • You booked a dream travel gig, and want to share photos while you’re traveling.
  • You got a dramatic haircut, but your next photoshoot with your photographer isn’t for months.
  • You had an unexpected change in your business that you want to share on social media.
  • You want to share your behind-the-scenes process, and you don’t have any current photos.

See what I mean?

When you hire a photographer vs. when you DIY will depend on what kind of business you run, but here are some guidelines.

When to hire a brand photographer

Hire a photographer for the big things:

  • New products & offerings
  • Rebrands & website redesigns
  • Professional headshots for your website & social profiles
  • Events and workshops that you host
when to diy brand photos vs hire a brand photographer

When to DIY your photos

DIY your photos when:

  • You are a blogger, or someone that needs to churn out content quickly and constantly.
  • You are still establishing your brand and refining your aesthetic.
  • You want to capture everyday behind-the-scenes, like working in your office, meeting with clients, creating and packaging products, before and after photos, etc.

In general, if you’re in your first year of business – go ahead and DIY your photos. Once you have established yourself, you have a steady income stream, and you have a clear vision of where you want your brand to go – then invest in a brand photographer to take your brand to the next level.

Creative Entrepreneur sitting at computer

Real-world examples

Here are some examples of different professions and instances when to DIY photos or when to hire a brand photographer.

Maker/artisan:

  • Hire a photographer to capture your studio space and behind the scenes.
  • DIY your everyday social media content, new pieces in between photoshoots, craft fairs, and packaging.

Hair stylist:

  • Hire a photographer to get photos of your salon, headshots of your stylists, and styling a client.
  • DIY for every day before & afters, social gatherings with your team, behind the scenes of training or workshops.

Coach:

  • Hire a photographer for your service and product launches, professional headshots, and your transformation process for your clients.
  • DIY for client wins, your daily routine, and everyday behind the scenes.

Physical trainer:

  • Hire a photographer to capture a “modeled” behind-the-scenes of you working with a client, photos with special lighting, meal prep routine, nutrition-based photos, headshots, and your signature program.
  • DIY for everyday client work, your at-home workouts, on-the-go activities, everyday meal sharing.

There is a time and place for a professional brand photographer, and a time and place for DIY.

Ready to book a brand session for your business? Read more about the Signature Brand Shoot Experience.

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