If you’re new to the world of professional photography and have a personal brand, figuring out how much you can expect to spend can be tricky. You’ll get various recommendations when you’re looking for an affordable branding photographer that won’t break your budget.
Great photography is essential to your brand’s success. Never underestimate the power of images! They’re more than window dressing. The right images can be transformational to a company’s image.
If you’re on a budget, like most entrepreneurs or small businesses, you’ll need to decide which functions are essential. While a professional photoset will make your business look legitimate and put together, the wrong photos can be fatal to your brand.
Let’s first discuss the different types of branding photography that are most commonly used.
1. Lifestyle Portraits
Blending lifestyle and portrait photography, a lifestyle portrait photoshoot is an effective means for entrepreneurs, creatives and small business owners to showcase their businesses.
Businesses can use lifestyle shoots to show potential customers what the business is like, how people who work there live, and how their products fit into their lives.
Taking advantage of various locations during a photoshoot is essential, as doing so helps keep the images from looking too similar. Business portraits that convey personality are more effective for marketing than traditional headshots because people buy from people they know and trust.
2. Branding Photography
Branding shoots are designed to create a consistent image for entrepreneurs, startup businesses, service-based and product-based businesses, lifestyle brands, bloggers, and influencers to share their personalities and put a face to the brand.
The main objective of branding photography is to create images that are consistent with your brand identity. It helps build a strong relationship between the consumer and your brand by communicating its values, uniqueness, and personality engagingly.
Branding photography needs to be created to make it easy for people to identify with what they see on screen or in print.
3. Photography Coverage at Events & Workshops
If you’re planning an event or workshop, taking pictures during the proceedings is a good idea. You can use these images to help promote future events and workshops and share what took place during the event.
There is No Such Thing as an “On-Going Rate”
The price for photography services varies wildly because there is no standardized method for setting such prices. There is no qualification to call yourself a professional photographer – anyone can start advertising their services without any prerequisites.
As with other professions, the rates of professional photographers vary greatly depending on the costs associated with their profession and their desired profit margin.
The cost of branding photography depends on the number of photos you need, how they are to be used, and what kind of prep work or post-production will be involved.
The Branding Photography Process
Branding photography is a process. It’s not the same as taking photos of your family or dinner. The goal is to create an image that represents your brand and conveys the message you want to send.
Here are some of the most critical steps you need to take when creating your brand:
1. Get To Know the Brand
When you book a personal branding photography session, you can fill out a brand questionnaire to help the photographer get to know you better. This will allow you to plan for your photo shoot.
2. Pre Session-Consult
After you complete and return the brand questionnaire, the photographer will schedule a phone meeting to discuss the finer details of the photo shoot, such as location options, styling and outfits, and any products that need to be photographed.
After that, you can create a mood board to help you plan details for the shoot. You will also schedule a time for the photo shoot with your client.
3. Photo Shoot
If you choose to have hair and makeup done before your branding session, please ensure that you schedule enough time to be beautified.
Remember, you’ll need to allow enough time for travel from your salon appointment to the photo location.
4. Delivery of Images
The delivery of images is a very important step in the branding photography process. It is important to note that your photographer should deliver uncompressed RAW images, not JPEGs. This allows you to get the best possible results in post-production.
You will receive edited, high-resolution images within two weeks of your session. The images are delivered through a private online gallery for you to download instantly and in sizes suitable for print and social media.
A Detailed Comparison of Different Types of Photographers and Their Costs
Photographers Price Range
$0 – $250
New photographers typically charge less than more experienced ones. Working with a newbie could be an exciting and worthwhile adventure, but consider that you’ll be taking more of a risk.
New photographers charge so little because they lack the experience to guarantee results or professional-quality images and are eager to build a portfolio at any cost.
Be sure to ask if they are a legal, insured business and can do the type of work you need before hiring them.
$250 – $750
Entry-Mid Level Photographer
This fee range is more appropriate for your project’s needs, which are more of a mid-level professional service. You will get a lot of decent photos or very few spectacular ones, depending on the detail you go into.
At this range, you can expect the photographer to create images that fit your brand and also offer additional images for sale separately.
$750 – $1500
If you want a photography experience tailored to fit your needs, branding photography that costs $750 or more is the way to go.
Generally, the more images you include and add-ons you choose, the higher your price will be. Many photographers charge for these services in addition to the cost of hiring their staff and equipment.
$1500 & up
Top-Level Professional Photographer
Do you want the best? You got the best.
The highest-end branding photographers charge $1,500 for certain types of sessions because they spend hours on your project before, during, and after your session ensuring that you have the perfect images for your business.
What Are You Getting for the Price?
So, you know your price range, but how do you know what you’re getting for it? The cost of branding photography is much more than just the cost of hiring a photographer.
A professional branding photographer will know how to connect your images to your ideal client, the latest trends in social media strategy, and the importance of keeping up with market trends.
Then, depending on the photographer’s experience, you can ask for a service that will make reaching your online audience easier.
Your branding photos should help you attract new clients to your business. Using images in your social media posts, blog, and billboard can help your audience connect with you, build trust in your business, and ultimately do business with you.
Don’t focus on how much the branding images cost; think about how much more money you can bring in when your brand is represented in a professional, approachable, and eye-catching way.
Professional Photographer Costs to Consider
The biggest misconception about photographers is that we get to keep all of our earnings. In fact, the money you see in a photographer’s wallet comes from a lot of hard work, long hours, and expensive equipment.
Like in the movie and radio industries, there is a lot of talent to pay for creating high-quality branding photos. Most photographers are self-employed and work as freelancers but also partner with other freelancers for specific productions.
Even though a photographer does everything alone, there are several costs associated with a photo shoot that the photographer must bear.
External Costs to Bear
- Makeup & Hair artist
- Set designing
- Location booking
- Studio rentals
- Assistant’s compensation
- Backup system
- Editing software fees
- Camera Equipment rental
- General business administration costs (taxes, licenses, utilities, etc.)
So, how much does brand photography cost? That’s a question that can no doubt be best answered on a case-by-case basis. Each brand will have different needs and preferences, and the price will vary accordingly.
You’ll also want to consider the photographer’s experience, skill level, and what you’re looking for in general.
Do you need an advertising photographer or someone more focused on editorial photography?
Are you looking for a full branding package or just a single photo shoot? Whatever you do, don’t base your decision solely on price—if the cheap photographer doesn’t deliver quality work, it’s not worth anything.