I love the dark food photography style in the chocolate photo above. It is a photo I took for Cleeves: Chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate. The style they were after was retro with rustic elements. Right up my street.
Like for any product brand your style of photography is so important. Does your brand stand for light and airy, minimalist, colourful, dark and moody, rustic ….? These are things worth thinking about when you start taking photographs of your product. Branding is more than just publicity; it influences how consumers perceive your company and the value they assign to it. As Seth Godin (Marketing and Leadership expert) put it: “A brand is the set of expectations, memories, stories and relationships that, taken together, account for a consumer’s decision to choose one product or service over another”. To complicate things further, the food industry has to make branding decisions based on both the business style and what the audience finds appetizing.
How do you define your brand style?
First have a think about your target market. What is their age, gender, job description, income, and education level? What is their personality like? What values, hobbies, and interests do they have? What type of lifestyle do they live? What are their day to day concerns? What solutions are they looking for? What other brands do they like? This last question in particular may be very useful. How do the other brands profile themselves? What style do they have? It’s an exercise that you have possibly already done for a web designer.
Secondly, how would you describe your own brand? Think of different adjectives such as rustic, minimalist, passionate, healthy, playful etc. Is this style in line with the style that your target audience is after? Can the two be combined to make it your own unique signature style?
It does take time and a lot of practice to develop your own style. Believe me, it will be worth the effort.
Consistency is key!
Once you have a fair idea about what your branding style for photographs should look like, stick with it. Consistency is so important. Clients should be able to recognise your photographs by your unique style. If your business is on Instagram, you might know about the importance of the instagram grid. One glance at your grid by your clients, will be the deciding factor on whether they will follow you or not. I will cover this in more detail in another blog post.
This is the GRID on my Instagram account:
Own your brand …
In a nutshell, spend some time on defining your brand. If you need any help with this, I can highly recommend Lush Marketing. Second step is to come up with a unique consistent style of photography. You want your customers to instantly recognise your brand. This might take a little while but it will pay off once you have it established.