June 6, 2015

Amy Mewborn is the Founder of Women Success Society. She helps women entrepreneurs launch and scale six and seven figure businesses, without the hustle; with her signature programs - Business Success Simplified and Elevate Mastermind and Accelerator.

How To Use Photography to Showcase Your ServicesPhotos are a huge part of your marketing and branding tasks when you are launching a new barre studio or marketing your existing barre studio.

When someone is considering trying a new fitness routine, they are likely going to check you out online.  They may go to your website, your Facebook page, your instagram, or your twitter account.  They will watch your videos and they’ll look at your pictures.  They want to see who you are.

One of the common mistakes that I see on fitness websites is a bunch of stock photos vs photos of the real staff, real clients, and real studios.

You want your photos to look great, but you also want them to represent who you are!  You want them to be able to see your personality and really get a feel for who you are.  So here are five simple tips to stage your own do it yourself photo shoot.

1.  Have a headshot done for each of the staff.  Ideally in the same location, at the same location, and in the same outfit.  Make suer that everyone has done full make up and a hair style that flatters them.  When we had our photo shoot done, each of our staff had probably 15 headshots done.  It’s amazing how few of them they each liked!  So put your best foot forward.  Be camera ready, and take a few – so you can choose your favorites!!!  You can use Perfect 365 or Visage Lab on your iPhone to auto edit and retouch your photos.

2.  Have some sample photos before you go in that show what you want to get while everyone is there.  When you are creating your photo shoot, once you get started, you will forget a bunch of the photos that you were hoping to get.  But if you walk in and have a list or examples, you’re more likely to get the photos you really wanted!

3.  Get a combination of staged photographs and fun, candid photos.  You want formal, proper photos that are focused on form, lines, and a quality image.  You’ll use them on flyers, brochures, your website and social media.  Get the shots from a NUMBER of different angles.  Then you want some fun, candid photos.  These photos will likely be used on your website and social media.  But you want to make sure that you have a combination of photos that show your professionalism AND your fun side!!  Take TONS of photos.  You can edit and crop to get angles and shots that you really want to highlight.  But the more photos you have, the more options you have!

4.  Have your instructors and real clients be your models and subjects.  If you want to photograph an instructor teaching – consider having them teach real clients and real instructors.  If you have a variety of ages, genders, fitness levels, etc – make sure that is represented in your photos.  You want your photos to show off who you are.  I’ve actually received emails from clients saying that they don’t look like the people in our photos, and they wondered if it was ok that they still came.  I know you want your photos to look perfect.  But remember, if your goal is to be an inclusive studio, make sure that your photos represent that a bit!

5.  Edit, Edit, Edit.  If you have followed the other guidelines (in particular number 3), you should have tons of photos to choose from that you can find the best looks, poses, angles, and lighting to highlight your best features!  One of the success secrets of a professional photographer is that they are clicking, clicking, clicking back to back, capturing all the moments of the shots. But then, they are taking the time to professionally edit the photos.  We’ve all seen the miracles of photoshop.  You can improve the lighting, remove wrinkles, and more!  Don’t skimp on the editing.   After you have edited your photos, if you feel that they still need a bit of extra love, the web software Picmonkey has capabilities that will help you run the photos through various filters.

These simple tips will help you take your own photos put your best foot forward on your website, social media and print materials!   Remember your ideal client as you are designing your photo shoot.  Your photos will be part of your first impression!  Make it a good one!!!