How to prepare for a personal branding photography shoot

Amy from Killer Copy on a personal branding photography shoot

You’ve got your personal branding photography shoot booked in the diary, but how do you get ready for it? Here’s everything you need to know about preparing for a personal branding shoot so you can be relaxed and confident. Let’s do it!

Getting to know your personal brand

What are your core brand values? Who is your ideal customer? What are you trying to communicate with your personal branding photographs? 

Depending on where you are in your business journey, this might mean doing some thinking and research before your personal branding photography shoot. Then you can be clear about what you’re trying to communicate and to whom. 

This doesn’t need to be a slog! There are lots of free resources out there to help you find your brand voice. Plus, when you book a signature personal branding shoot with me, we’ll schedule a Zoom call to have a chat about what your images need to convey. 

You might even find that preparing for your shoot gives you a whole new clarity on the direction you want your brand to go in, win-win!

Gathering ideas for your personal branding photography

This is the fun part! Get pinning some ideas for your personal branding photography… it can be anything! Cool locations, poses you like, outfits that catch your eye, colours that inspire you or other brands that float your boat… I’m a firm believer that inspiration comes from everywhere and I like to see through your eyes what matters to you. 

Simply pop me a link to your Pinterest board and I’ll use it to inform our choice of location. I’ll also use it as inspiration to make a shot list ahead of your shoot that I can work through on the day. 

Must-have personal branding shots

There’s no need to make a mega-long shot list for your personal branding photography shoot, I’ll already have your back and bring a list of my own. However, some notes about any must-have images is useful… Perhaps you’re speaking at a conference and need a profile picture in a particular style for their website? Or maybe all of your personal branding photos must work cropped into a square for your Instagram?  

Not sure what you need just yet, or just want a good variety to choose from? That’s no problem… My signature personal branding shoot gives us plenty of time to get any must-haves as well as all my go-to shots (and then some!)

Best locations for personal branding photography

By the time we’ve got to this step, we’ll have a pretty good idea of what you’re after from your images, which makes choosing the type of location we need simple. 

You might want to have your shoot at your place of business, workshop or home. Sending me pictures of the room beforehand can help me to know in advance if this will work in terms of space and lighting. 

If you are having your shoot in your own space, don’t forget to clear away any clutter before your shoot. Messy backgrounds can be distracting in pictures, and it will slow us down on the day if we need to push the hoover round! Buying some fresh flowers or gathering your houseplants in one place can bring so much life to your shoot (just don’t forget to water them in the run-up!)

Personal branding shoot in Manchester 

If you’re having your personal branding photography shoot in Manchester or Cheshire, I will be able to match you up with a location (or set of nearby locations) I have used before and know works well. There are lots of great spots to choose from around here, both indoors and outdoors.

If I’m travelling to you, we’ll chat about the type of location we need and we can work together to find somewhere suitable. We can also look into hiring a space such as an airy apartment, private dining area or film location, depending on what’s required.

Looking for something extra special? I always relish a challenge and I enjoy exploring interesting places, so my adventure personal branding shoot might be for you if you want to go off the beaten track. 

What to wear to your personal branding shoot 

By far the question I get asked the most is ‘what should I wear to my personal branding shoot?’ The short answer is… something that makes you feel good!

The (much) longer answer is here… what should I wear to my personal branding shoot

What props to bring to a personal branding shoot

Bringing props to your personal brand shoot helps to visually illustrate what you do. They also add variety to your images (and can give you something to do with your hands!)

The type of props you need will vary depending on what you do, but some universal props that work well are laptops, phones, mugs (for that essential brew), plus your tools of the trade, whatever those might be. 

Top tip: A little wheely suitcase is handy for carrying your props and additional clothing for easy transport when walking around different locations. 


Self-care is very personal and will be different for us all, but it goes without saying that if you look good, you feel good! 

You’re investing in a personal branding shoot, so it makes sense to feel at your very best by booking any essential grooming appointments before your shoot. I’m also able to recommend some great make-up artists for on the day if that’s for you. 

At the same time, you don’t need to feel like you’ve just stepped out the salon on my account… it’s about what makes YOU feel like YOU! Self-care is about finding your inner confidence with things that make you feel good. It can be as simple as getting an early night before your shoot!

How to get organised for your personal branding shoot 

You’ve done all the prep work, now it’s time to get organised! Proper planning for your personal branding shoot will take away any flustered feelings, leaving you feeling chilled and as ready as you can be. 

Pack your outfit(s) and your props the night before. Check timings for public transport or if travelling by car, have a look at where to park. There’s nothing worse than feeling rushed or arriving with a sweat on for your shoot! 

On the day…

It’s here! All you need to do is arrive at your shoot refreshed, relaxed and ready to smile! 

I hope you have enjoyed reading my top tips for preparing for a personal branding shoot. To read more about me and the way I work, please check out my about page. If you’d like to get booked in, please pop me a message via my contact form.

Or if you want to find out more, download my ‘5 Tips for Feeling More Confident on your Personal Branding Shoot‘ – enter your details to get my free guide straight in your inbox.

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Picture of Cassandra Lane

Cassandra Lane

Cassandra is a creative personal branding photographer specialising in personality-fueled shoots in Manchester and beyond. Her mission is to ditch the boring, stuffy headshots and help her clients feel confident to show off their true selves so they can expand their reach and make a positive impact on the world.

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