Portraits of your team: relaxed or posed?

15 Dec 2020 by Monica Linzmeier

There are plenty of reasons to invest in corporate portraits and company photos. From improving communication across offices to publicly sharing your photos across your different platforms, photos are key to creating a transparent and inviting work environment.  

Today we are going to look at how to decide on what kind of photos to take, whether they should be in a studio or out, but if you’re not yet convinced about why you need them, be sure to start here: The top 5 advantages to corporate headshots

To decide what type of photo is best for your company, start by asking yourself what the photos will be used for. 

What will you use these photos for? 

The first step in deciding what kind of photos you need is to define what the photos are going to be used for and where they are going to be displayed. Of course, you can have photos that overlap and are used in multiple places, but knowing the main usage of the photos will help you define your needs and the tone of the photos overall. 

Will they play into your recruitment on websites like Glassdoor and Welcome to the Jungle? Are they going to be shared on social media? Is it for your website to illustrate your business or your service? 

Once you know where the photos are going to go, you can then define how many you want, whether you want horizontals or verticals formats, and what kind of setup you want. 

Having a hard time picturing it? Let’s pretend you are going to promote your Sales Director presenting a keynote speech during an event. You want to make sure that you have a great photo of your Sales Director looking approachable and knowledgeable that you can use in your social media relays.

Alternatively, perhaps you want a page on your website with the bios of your C-suite. Here, a more official headshot might be more appropriate. 

You want to share the photos on Glassdoor to show off your company culture. This time, maybe your Sales Director should be in a meeting or playing foosball with their team. 

Tweaking the imagery to match the codes of each platform can help you to reach the right audiences, without fracturing the brand image that should be consistent throughout.

A closer look at posed portraits: What do you want to communicate? 

Friendly, expert, accessible, energetic, professional? A mix of all of the above? You’d be surprised how much you can communicate through your photos based on the setup choices. Here are a few examples: 

How to communicate: serious, professional expertise

Consider a studio set up with artificial light that allows you to control the setting. The fixed lighting and studio set up is more formal and portrays a feeling of calm, cool, and collected. Power poses can help your team to feel confident in their photo and communicate strength through their portraits. You can encourage your employees to dress as they would for work, or to dress up a bit.

Business corporate photo

© Meero

How to communicate: friendly, artistic, trustworthy     

Another great option is to put your team in the middle of the action and demonstrate your service at the same time. Using natural light in your shop is a beautiful way of making traditional portraits a little less stuffy. Additionally, this will allow you to capitalize on your business location. For example, a local bakery can take their shots just out in front of the store, which instantly communicates trustworthiness and highlights the local aspect. Get your team to wear their aprons and you’ve got a beautifully staged photo.  

© Meero

How to communicate: energetic, dynamic, friendly

Studio setups don’t have to be stiff. You can choose a lighter backdrop and encourage your employees to think of props or a position that represent their personality. They can sit down on the ground, jump up in the air, or mime a pose with a prop. These relaxed images will give off an approachable and easy-going vibe immediately. Like the other setups, they should be dressed as they would if they were going to work. 

Photo by Ali Yahya, Unsplash

We break it down in more detail here: Should you go for a studio or environmental portrait for business?

You may have noticed many of these examples include suggestions for how people should dress. As much as the setup plays a role in the tone, at the end of the day, the people in the photo are going to be a huge factor in the tone and vibe of each photo.

Whether your photos are posed with an official backdrop or relaxed and casual, try to match your photos to your company culture, be consistent throughout, and you’re sure to get a winning set of photos. 

© Meero

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