10 Best Ways To Prepare For Your Custom Content Session

10 Best Ways To Prepare For Your Custom Content Session

Written By:

Jeff Richardson

Photography Director
October 3, 2022

10 Best Ways To Prepare For Your Custom Content Session

Let’s paint the picture. It's 9 PM; you’re relaxing for the evening and scrolling through Instagram. As you're scrolling through your feed, you see a practice just posted brand new photos of their team. You do a double take and immediately stop scrolling! In true social media fashion, you look to see who’s tagged and go down the rabbit hole to see where they got these killer photos. You then realize these images are from one of Studio 8E8's EPIC photography and video sessions! Then it hits you: Woah, our practice needs this!

We couldn’t agree more.
(And if you don't agree yet, check out our team comparing custom and stock photos!)
Let's fast forward.

You have a photography and videography session booked! Now you’re two weeks away, and the panic begins to set in. You think to yourself: I’m not ready for this. 

As the lead photographer for Studio 8E8 since 2015 and with over 29 years of experience in portrait photography, I’ve seen a thing or two. My initial goal is for you to wrap up your session feeling confident and pleased with your decision to make it all happen. The overall goal is for your content from this session to have an instant, powerful connection to your patients! If you follow these tips, they will have a dramatic impact on the success of your photography and video session. 

1: Commit to the date

Don’t freak out! Do not allow yourself to come up with an excuse to reschedule. You know you need this content. You owe it to yourself and your team to make this happen! Give yourself a pep talk, take a deep breath, and commit to this day! Any last-minute hesitation will prolong the success coming your way by having new photos and videos, and ultimately, a new website to go with them.

2: Call in the cleaning crew

Our content team loves a fresh office! This gives you an opportunity for a nice refresh, too. Get rid of those outdated post-it notes. Minimize any clutter. Clean the windows. Change a rug or two. And if you really want to go the extra mile, consider a fresh paint job or update the seating in the waiting area.  In photos and video, LESS IS MORE. Remember that these photos will be set on a beautiful website with brand colors and text (ie. we like blank walls and lots of natural light). Simple, powerful imagery connects!

3: Team wardrobe

This part is fun! Talk with your team about what you expect them to wear. The color scheme. The vibes. Do you need to order some fresh new scrubs or a trendy pair of sneakers? We always recommend neutrals and brand colors, as this will translate to your new website the best (and simply look sleek). But don’t be afraid to show some personality, and allow your team to feel their best, too. Fresh outfits boost confidence, and confidence translates to epic photos!

4: Doctor Wardrobe

How do YOU want to present yourself? You can never go wrong with a fresh business casual look for your headshots. For the b-roll photos and video, dress exactly how you would on the day to day basis. Dress confident and comfortable. One tip I often give does a last-minute check; if you like how you look, it will translate to confidence. Don’t wear something just because “it's what doctors wear.” Meaning, if it’s not your style to be in the white coat, don’t. If it is, then do. Whatever your style, be bold and confident. It will show!

5: Hair and Make-Up

Let's talk glam! For our female Doctor-led practices, we highly recommend booking professional hair and make-up before your session. It takes the pressure off you and sets the tone for an Epic shoot. Confidence is key, baby! So often, we see last minute stress trying to “get ready” or “do my make up.”  Professional hair and makeup removes this variable and takes us right into great photos. Also, we can’t “just retouch it” for video. If your appearance in your videos is a priority, then you should add pro hair and makeup to your priority list, too.

6: Clear your schedule

You will want an empty book for photo and video day! We’ve run into various instances where doctors are seeing actual patients during our content sessions. Trust us, for many reasons; this does not work out. We want to prioritize you, your team, and your time for this new content.  I repeat: it’s a disaster if you see actual patients during a photo and video shoot. Think about it. No one wants to hear the scary drill and suction in the background of your interviews. The doctor and team are distracted taking care of the patient.  And let’s be honest, the bibs are not flattering. Imagine, too, that your patient is put off by having a video and photo team, and they feel they are not getting your complete attention. This is a big one, folks. NO REAL PATIENT APPOINTMENTS ON PHOTO VIDEO DAY.

7: “If you’re thinking about quitting, let us know so we can put you on the end.” 

It’s a funny comment with a hint of truth. One of the biggest questions we get asked is, “What do I do if someone on my team quits?” Don’t stress. You have to remember that only you internally know that a staff member is no longer with you. A new patient on the outside, considering your practice, has no idea. Photography and video are big investments and it needs to have at least a 24-36 month lifespan. We encourage you to have your staff, as well as patient models, sign a release that says their photo can be used in life for a continued length of time. This lowers any urgency on your part as the owner to replace those photos even if someone does leave.

8: Food and Beverages

Come prepared with drinks and snacks available for your team before the session. You'll thank us later. We don’t want hangry models. It’s a nice gesture that communicates to your team that this content shoot is important. There will be some downtime for staff and sometimes patient models. A dedicated place for lounging between takes, enjoying snacks, makes your patient models and staff feel welcome and an important part of this day.

9: Final walk-through

The stage is set, and you are ready for your shoot! As one final step, we recommend one “last glance” over your space, schedule, patient models, and team to ensure you've ironed out  all the details and everyone’s on the same page. Now you'll have nothing to worry about tomorrow!  

10: Relax

You did it! You've completed the hard work. Now relax, turn on some music, and enjoy your shoot. Our team will take it from here. We perfect every detail, from facial expressions to poses, to ensure that you look and feel your best!  Trust the process and let our team take it from here. We can’t wait to tell your story.

Are you ready for scroll-stopping photos and videos? Let us know!

P.S. Still wondering why custom content is better than stock? Check out the video below!

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