In today’s era of Instagram influencers and YouTube personalities, people who work in coaching and similar fields need to stay vigilant regarding how they appear in digital images and elsewhere.
This article aims to help you refine the branding of your coaching website. Here’s what you need to know to look your best to build your business.
Know Your Audience
Part of developing a strong aesthetic is knowing who you’re trying to target. Are you here to help twenty-something, college-educated men navigate their finances? Or do your potential customers consist of partnered women raising small children in an eco-friendly way while running a business out of their home? Different images will appeal to each demographic. Know what your audience expects from you, and let that knowledge guide development of your overall aesthetic.
In this instance, allow for a design professional to really explore and hone in on the design aesthetic of that niche to make your personal brand even more appealing.
Define Your Aesthetic
Your company’s design aesthetic is more than a logo and your website’s color palette. A unified aesthetic effectively communicates to potential customers what your brand is all about and how you can meet their needs.
Decide what messages your images should communicate, and focus on creating pictures and videos with that aesthetic in mind.
For instance, if your brand has to do with fitness, your aesthetic should revolve around pictures of you in athletic gear and being active. Keep images of you sitting on the couch, playing video games to a minimum! But on the other hand, if video games and e-sports are part of your brand, those are precisely the sort of pictures you want to post.
If you are selling business and professional coaching, keep your photos professional yet relatable to your working audience.
Consider too if your brand needs A LOT of images of you or just a few to make your coaching business relatable.
If your brand images rely on selfies, practice conveying the right facial expressions for your brand. While the correct expression will vary based on your niche, you’ll generally want to appear confident without seeming arrogant, passionate without seeming obsessive. Rehearse your expressions in the mirror, and solicit some outside feedback from friends and trusted customers.
Lastly, don’t be wary of makeup, even if you’re male. A little foundation and concealer can make your best features really pop and enhance that level of professionalism.
“This man knows what he’s doing and is put together!”
SageThyme Solutions weaves personal images into a nature-inspired brand.
A balance of photography and illustration display both professionalism and a natural, organic approach to coaching.
Composition is Key
Now that you know how you want your images to feel, the trick is making them visually appealing. Here are a couple of tried and true photography tips.
One important tip to remember: for every image you see posted on another influencer’s feed, there are dozens, perhaps even hundreds of images where the lighting, angle, or other elements were wrong. The quest for that perfect shot requires many imperfect ones.
A ring light might not be enough here, and for your clients, it may pay for you to pay a professional photographer or graphic designer who can edit the photographs.
SageThyme Solutions founder Elizabeth Groover.
Professional photograph alongside her bio.
Keep It Simple
Your image should have an interesting background and only a few elements in the foreground. Avoid an overly cluttered image; otherwise, your customers won’t know what they’re supposed to be looking at. After all, YOU are the brand image of professionalism, physical fitness, financial security, coaching.
If you’re taking pictures on a busy urban street or thick forest, try blurring the background slightly to focus on the foreground. Again—Hire a professional.
Don’t Go Crazy
Pick the best images and place them strategically on your website. Your audience will come to know you through a few strong, select images. As well as any videos you create.
Remember, you are not trying to show off how glamorous your life is (unless that is what your niche is looking for), but to show how approachable or understanding you are of your audience.
Photograph of Jessica Valis on the Harford Designs website.