5 Tips for Planning Your Next Social Media Content Creation Photo Shoot

1 -PLAN YOUR PHOTO SHOOTS WELL IN ADVANCE!

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Far too many holidays and events pop up that we often forget about or fail to plan for in advance. Leaving us with limited time to create a well designed marketing campaign, throwing us into a reactive mindset rather than a proactive one. Planning in advance will help maximize your marketing dollars and hopefully return a greater ROI.

Plan your marketing around the seasons or holidays that impact your business.

For example: You’ll want to begin marketing for Christmas in November (if not sooner, with sneak peeks) - which means you’ll need to create your product/content no later than the end of September. Allow yourself plenty of lead time to design products or content, schedule a photo shoot, have your photographs edited and delivered so you can create marketing pieces, update your website, social media, online stores, and newsletters. Waiting until November 1st to start creating content will have you playing catch up all holiday season.

2 - FIND YOUR STYLE & STICK TO IT!

Avoid falling victim to building your brand (and branding) around trends.

Example: if mason jars and burlap aren’t your brand, don’t incorporate it. Same with colors -if your colors are black and white, pick one accent color and stick with it. Don’t bounce between black, white, pink for a week and switching to black, white, and orange the following week. Or always looking for a new logo or how to tweak your current logo.

Take it from personal experience - nothing is worse than scheduling a photo shoot, sourcing wardrobe/props, to receive your photos and not see your vision or brand in the photographs because you tried to be something or someone your not.

Years ago, I scheduled a photo shoot to update my headshots. Picture an open field, denim jacket, and white & orange chevron dress. Sounds lovely, but that isn’t me! I’m an all black, heel wearing kinda girl who wears minimal makeup with a bold lip and either nude or black nails.

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3 - DO THE WORK

Successful photo shoots don’t happen by chance, instead you (and your team) are going to have to put in a little extra work to bring your vision to life with props, location scouting, wardrobe planning, and making sure your products are picture perfect.

Hoping that it all works out doesn’t work when developing a content creation photo shoot. Having a shot list is also incredibly helpful to make sure that key elements or products aren’t forgotten or overlooked.

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4 - GO PRO

Work with a photographer who understands how to photograph products, food, people, buildings, etc. You sort of need a jack of all trades when it comes to creating social media content and let me tell you the D-i-Y approach with a few filters doesn’t work. After seeing “real” photos you’ll never want to go back to camera phone images, at least that has been my experience.

5 - LESS IS MORE

Avoid overwhelming yourself, your team, and your photographer with a list of 100 must have photos. Instead focus on creating a smaller collection of high quality photographs that you can use during the next month or two. Same goes for props and products. Sometimes keeping it simple can make a greater impact than a cluttered photo. If your budget allows for monthly content creation that’s a bonus, if not, plan out 4 shoots a year to work with the seasons, product or program launches.

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All social media & branding clients go through a personalized consultation with me to discuss their objectives, vision, how the photographs will be used, and any other details that are key to include. More details about working with me to create your social media content can be found HERE.



Scatko Family Chiropractic - Amanda Kraft Photography - Lancaster, PA - Personal Branding & Social Media Content Creation

There aren't enough words to describe how much I value the professional and personal relationship that Dr. Kristi and I have developed over the past few years. 

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I was a high school athlete when I had my first experience with a chiropractor and have been an advocate ever since.

Dr. Kristi isn’t little miss back crack as most people tend to associate chiropractors with. Dr. Kristi is far more concerned with how your body moves, how you feel, and how she can offer a holistic approach to support your bodies needs.

Dr. Kristi has helped me find ways to continue enjoying what I love to do; working out, running, spinning, paddleboarding, and photographing without having to turn to pills or potions. Don’t be surprised if I arrive to your photo shoot in a funky color or pattern of kinesiology tape or a little smelly from a CBD infused lotion.

Meet: Dr. Kristi Scatko
Website: www.scatkofamilychiropractic.com

What problem/challenge do you help solve for your clients? Anything from neck and back aches to headaches and plantar fasciitis! I work at finding the cause of the pain and addressing that rather than relying on treatments that just mask the pain. 

What services and/or products do you offer?  Chiropractic care, Cupping Therapy, RainDrop Therapy, Custom Orthotics, and Rock Tape.

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What is the best advice you've ever been given?  "Everything happens for a reason".  That has become my life motto and helps me get through any rough times.  Good or bad, whatever happens in life is meant to be and we can't always see WHY but over time, we learn to understand why.

What are three things you couldn't go without? 

  • Hot tea in the morning...not a coffee girl!

  • Candy...it's my weakness!

  • Coconut oil! The only moisturizer I use and it's changed my skin dramatically!

Anything else you'd like to share about WHO YOU ARE & WHAT YOU DO? 

I enjoy getting to know my patients and often feel like they are an extension of my family. My office visits are about 30 minutes in length so I can take my time with each patient. Pregnant mamas are my specialty! 

Her why for building a successful practice:

My daughter and husband are my reasons for working hard at getting my business booming! I want to make them proud.

Fur babies: We have an overactive, hypersensitive mini Australian Shepherd and and overweight dwarf cat who keep life interesting.

Weekly Must Do Chore: I NEED to meal plan for the week or I feel completely overwhelmed during the week. 

How to connect with Dr. Kristi: Emailing is the best way as I'm often away from the phone working with patients. scatkofamilychiropractic@gmail.com or www.scatkofamilychiropractic.com


Personal Branding Portraits - Jeff - Amanda Kraft Photography, Lancaster Pa

“Style is knowing who you are,

what you want to say,

and not giving a damn.” 

– Orson Welles

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I’ve focused so much of my business on photographing women that I have often overlooked the opportunity to photograph men. Within this past year, I’ve began photographing more and more male clients and if I’m being honest, I am loving the change of pace and style.

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Jeff was introduced to me through one of the stylists, Missy, from Trans4mation Salon. He had needed a fresh cut to update his headshots and Missy suggested that Jeff connect with me. A week later he was in the studio for his photo shoot.

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Jeff provided me with a bit of background as to his personal branding photography needs and we ran with it. He brought a few looks to be photographed in; a suit jacket with a tie and two other jackets. My favorite portraits had been those of Jeff in his dark brown suede jacket paired with a crisp white shirt and jeans. Very James Bond meets the cover of Cigar Aficionado.

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While our objective was to create a collection of portraits that Jeff could use for an upcoming award he will be receiving, he could also use these portraits for an updated website profile, LinkedIn, or social media accounts he might have.



Legacy Boxes - Amanda Kraft Photography - Lancaster, PA

Many of my clients tell me that they don’t have space in their home to hang large wall portraits or perhaps some of the portraits aren’t ones you’d like hanging for your mother-in-law to see.

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Legacy Boxes are the perfect alternative for keeping your portraits private, yet accessible. Each box is handcrafted and assembled with beautiful fabrics containing individually matted portraits inside. Legacy Boxes can hold up to 25 - matted prints offering plenty of room to add additional prints or keepsakes.

Imagine starting your legacy box as a high school senior; collecting keepsakes and portraits throughout your post high school/college days as you create new memories as you get engaged, walk down the aisle, and begin your family legacy.

Next time you visit the studio be sure to ask to see my Legacy Box so you can see the handcrafted beauty in these boxes.

Is photo shoot planning stressing you out? - Amanda Kraft Photography - Lancaster, PA

Are you planning an upcoming photo shoot, but the planning feels a tad bit overwhelming? Girl… I feel your pain. I’ll obsess about outfits, hairstyling, and makeup for weeks (also know as… spending countless hours on Pinterest). Only to remind myself that wearing all black makes me feel polished, professional, and confident. And, trusting my hair stylist and makeup artist to make me camera ready. See all the worrying was for nothing.

Easier said than done! Yep, I know. That’s why I’ve created a Photo Shoot Planning Guide to help eliminate the overwhelm with checklists, wardrobe suggestions (and examples), and a list of location & prop ideas.

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I’ve taken 16+ years of experience of planning engagement photo shoots on the hottest summer day during a heatwave to working with a client who lost all of her luggage at the airport the day before her engagement portraits. Or working with high school seniors who are sometimes afraid to show their true style or selves in their portraits.

Included is a checklist to help remind you of when to schedule hair and nail appointments, how to arrive to your photo shoot, extra things to back and WHAT NOT TO PACK. And please by all means, download your guide, read it over and let me know if I forgot to add something that saved the day and might be helpful to add!

Behind The Scenes - Social Media Content Creation - Amanda Kraft Photography - Lancaster, Pa

A little behind the scenes of social media content creation for Trans4mation Salon in Lancaster, Pa. I’ve been working closely with the their team of Stylists and in-house Esthetician to create social media content that matches the look and feel of their brand.

Cathy, the owner of Trans4mation Salon, and I have discussed ways to feature their clients, the talented team of ladies, and their favorite products to use on their website, in-salon marketing, newsletters, and social media.

In the next few weeks, I’ll be adding a Social Media Content Planner to the new photo shoot planning library to help elevate your personal branding and social media content.

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I have 3 spots left for personal branding and social media content creation left for March, please email me to learn more about my process and to pick a date for a photo shoot of your own!

Personal Branding In-Studio Mini Headshot Special

One of my favorite things about my natural light studio is having the opportunity to work with some many local business owners; accountants, financial planners, yoga instructors, bitcoin gurus, graphic designers, fellow creatives, and hair stylists. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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When did you have your headshot taken last? Has it been longer than a year? If so, let's look at our calendars and book a personal branding & headshot photo shoot. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Mini photo shoots including hair & makeup start at $199. ($99. without hair & makeup) to include a 30 to 45-minute mini photo shoot & three digital files.
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Call the studio or send me an email(amandakraftphotography@gmail.com) to book a photo shoot.



WHY STORYTELLING IS SO VITAL IN BUSINESS - AMANDA KRAFT PHOTOGRAPHY - PERSONAL BRANDING & SOCIAL MEDIA CONTENT CREATION

For as long as I can remember I’ve been fascinated by the behind-the-scenes aspect of photo shoots. Giving the viewer (me at the time; a 13-year old girl who dreamed of being a photographer) a chance to see what it really took to bring an idea full circle to finished piece or product.

Thanks to technology; the ease of creating eye catching photographs and video paired with ability to share on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube we have more access to seeing the behind the scenes process than ever before.

Any Devil Wears Prada fans? I’ll admit that I am a DWP superfan and LOVE the movie for so many reasons, but it gave viewers a chance to understand the visual story that is being told through fashion editorials using models and clothing to tell the story. Plus, a look at the not-so-glamourous side of what working at a fashion magazine could be.

Storytelling is shared daily - Every heard of Gary V? Gary V is an incredible storyteller sharing what it takes to be a business owner - he has pulled back the curtain and shows us the grit and commitment it takes to build and sustain a business daily.

Why am I sharing all of this on a photography blog, because we must become storytellers in our lives & businesses. We can no longer post a few photos and wait for the phone to ring. I truly believe we need to show to process no matter how messy it can be, it gives us a relate-ability factor.

For those in business, how many times have you heard someone say… “I’ve been following you quietly for weeks, months, or years before reaching out to you, joining your program, or hiring you.” Several clients have told me this over the years and many of my high school senior clients younger siblings have told me how excited they have been for it to finally be their turn for a photo shoot. Because they have watched the story unfold.

Of course, you don’t have to air your dirty laundry, but giving your audience the opportunity to understand the process behind WHO YOU ARE & WHAT YOU DO does matter in today’s world of business, and it might actually matter more now than ever before.

Let’s chat about ways to weave your story in your brand and business.

  1. Creating a series of behind the scenes photos of how you take a project or idea from your head to paper and from paper to final product gives the viewer/consumer a better understanding of the level of craftsmanship involved. You can do this through still photography and small video clips.

  2. If you are personal trainer, wellness coach, or life coach - maybe you could show what a day in the life is like for you. Showing a glimpse of how you meal prep, plan or design your workouts, interact with clients, and balance juggling a family. Allowing your viewers to see that you walk the talk yourself.

  3. Maybe you are a food truck owner (ever see Chef?!) and you want to use your online presence to build buzz about where your truck might be for the day, what your current specials are, and tell the story of what food means to you.

  4. A small custom t-shirt company - sharing how the designs are created, the meaning or connection to why you create what you create along with why you choose to use the vendors you do might matter to your customers as much as it means to you.


Another behind the scenes moment of how I create natural light food photographs for my stock photography site and personal blog.

Another behind the scenes moment of how I create natural light food photographs for my stock photography site and personal blog.

A behind the scenes photo when I spoke to fellow photographers on the importance of creating a health and wellness plan within their business

A behind the scenes photo when I spoke to fellow photographers on the importance of creating a health and wellness plan within their business


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I’d love to hear how you weave storytelling into your business and brand in the comments below.





Social Media Stock Photography - Amanda Kraft Photography, Lancaster PA

Do you ever find yourself ready to post on your blog or social media but can’t find the perfect photo to accompany your words? You then spend precious time searching the web for a royalty free photo or a low cost stock photo that kinda of matches your brand or giving up on adding photos all together.

You aren’t alone! I have worked with health coaches, yogi’s, personal trainers, hair stylists, and other small business owners who struggle to find the right images to match their brand and personality. Creating your own collection of personalized stock photography can be a lot of fun to create and also be much more cost effective than you would believe.

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Of course, you can throw together a quick flat lay photo for Instagram, but if your zone of genius isn’t photography or design it might be wise to work with someone who does specialize in commercial and stock photography.

What a lot of people might not is I have a soft spot for food photography. I absolutely love creating food images of ingredients, the recipe development process, and the finished plate. Food photography was one of my favorite speciality classes in college and many of the stock photographs found at Well Stocked (my stock photography website) are of dishes I’ve made for myself and husband.

I’d love to help you create a collection or stockpile of creative and eye catching photographs that you can use in your marketing, blog posts, newsletters, or in a cookbook to show the world who you are and what you do.

Behind the Scenes with Lynn - Amanda Kraft Photography - Personal Branding Photo Shoot

Over the summer I hosted a series of complimentary personal branding headshots in the studio. It was a great way for me to meet other business owners within the community and also reconnect with friends who I haven’t seen in bit of time.

I had the privilege of meeting Lynn when I was personal training (the whole story about me dipping my toes into wellness can be found here) and was so excited for her to visit me in the studio and have the chance to experience a different version of me behind the camera.

Lynn snapped a few behind the scenes photos that she shared with me.

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New year, new you, new branding! Does your current branding and social media presence need a bit of a refresh? It’s so easy for life & business to move at a rapid pace that you forget to freshen up your marketing content. That’s where I can help with monthly or quarterly branding packages. Together we will plan out your marketing for the next 3, 6, 9 or 12 months and create a plan for stylized photo shoots and marketing content.

Monthly and Quarterly branding packages are perfect for yoga studios, hair salons & spas, bakeries, wedding professionals, chefs, personal trainers, interior decorators - basically any business that uses social media to market their business. Let’s SHOW THE WORLD WHO YOU ARE AND WHAT YOU DO this year!

Social Media Content Creation

I've been a busy girl working behind the scenes on a brand new service for my fellow creatives - social media content photography to pair with personal branding photography. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

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As a small business owner, you wear a lot of hats; answering client emails, processing orders, designing products, meeting with your staff, invoicing, trips to the office supply store, setting up marketing, attending networking events, and the list goes on. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

Let me take one thing off your plate by becoming your social media content creator.  What in the heck is a social media content creator? We work together on a monthly or quarterly basis to produce all of your social media content for the month/quarter ahead.  All you have to do it sit down for an afternoon and plug your photos into your social media and get back to running your business! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

Take it from me, it feels amazing not having to search for images that might suit your business or brand.  When we work together to plan your photo shoots to be completely specific to your brand, business, products, and personality. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

I have a handful of spots open for February and would love to chat with you on how to we can work together to SHOW THE WORLD WHO YOU ARE AND WHAT YOU DO! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

If you aren't in the market for a social media content creator but have a friend who is a personal trainer, wellness or life coach, small business owner, stylist, wedding vendor, chef, or blogger - share this post!  I'd love to take one big task off their to-do list and bring their brand to life through custom photography!

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A Heather & Co - Fall Fashion Photo Shoot - Amanda Kraft Photography, Lititz Pa

Allow me to introduce you to a friend of mine, Autumn - the owner of A Heather & Co a small boutique in Lititz, Pa. We spent a few hours creating her social media content for the fall and into the early part of the holiday season.

If you are a fan of shopping local or looking for pieces to update your closet, A Heather & Co is a perfect place to start.

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Find the pants HERE

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Fall in love with the jacket HERE

The perfect clutch to go from day to night can be found HERE

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Feel cozy & comfortable in this gray tunic

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Trade your peacoat for this beautiful plaid coat

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If this top doesn’t scream casual Thanksgiving style than I don’t know what does!

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Head out to office happy hour in this tulip dress


Does your social media need an update? Trust me, I get it! Being a small business owner myself requires me/us to wear many hats. That’s why I’ve created a way to take the guess work out of your social media content creation and provide you with a stockpile of amazing images that suit your business, brand, products, and personality without having to spend a ton of time or money searching for stock photos.

Give me call, I’d love to chat with to bring your brand to life with custom social media content photography that combines WHO YOU ARE & WHAT YOU DO!