Branding, Marketing

Becoming the Face of Your Business Through Brand Photography with Mallika Malhotra of MikiFoto

Episode 029: Show Notes

Have you been aiming to become the face of your business, but just aren't sure how exactly to do it? Well, you are in luck! In this episode we have our friend Mallika from MikiFoto with us and that is precisely what she is coming on to share with you guys today. We got to meet Mallika last year at The Savvy Experience and have loved watching as she's shifted her business, moving more towards lifestyle branded headshots and photography for small businesses and creative entrepreneurs.

Have you been aiming to become the face of your business, but just not sure how exactly to do it? Well, you are in luck! In this episode we have our friend Mallika from MikiFoto with us and that is precisely what she is coming on to share with you guys today. We got to meet Mallika last year at The Savvy Experience and have loved watching as she shifted her business to do more lifestyle branded headshots and photography for small businesses and creative entrepreneurs.  |  The Strategy Hour  |  Think Creative Collective

In our chat with Mallika, we jump into the importance of being the face of your business, exactly what you should be doing to find the right photographer for you, how to prepare for your shoot, what to wear, and how to make your photos last longer than three months. We also get into the most important shots you need for your business so that you can take away from this photo session exactly what you need to prosper online. We are super excited for you to listen more, because she’s legit, guys. So get excited!

What Even Is A Headshot?

A headshot is really a visual representation of your business. It acts as your virtual handshake and is the first impression that your brand and your business is making with your audience. It is so important to have a professional headshot because you want to portray yourself as a professional, legitimate business owner. A professional shot ensures that you look presentable, and that your hair and makeup and your styling are all done in a professional way. This distinguishes you from the newbies, or the hobbyists out there, so you can communicate that you are the real deal. It truly sets you up as a legitimate business owner who is ready to work with clients and be an expert in the field.

Becoming the Face of Your Brand

Oftentimes people hide behind their logos or websites, but it is so important to really put your face out there so you can make a connection. When it comes to growing your business, the most important thing is building that relationship with your audience. Really, it’s through you! Many creatives are in industries that are already so saturated. There are a thousand photographers, a million coaches, so the best way to make that connection, to build that relationship, is to actually show up and put your face out there. Again, you have to portray yourself as a professional and this connection with your audience allows you to humanize your business and make it more real and authentic for your prospective clients.

Being Okay With Putting Yourself Out There

If you struggle with being comfortable putting yourself out there, the first thing to realize is that everybody has insecurities, even your photographer. Mallika always tells her clients to think about the bigger picture instead. Think about the service, your mission, what you are doing for your audience, and then make that your goal, to serve them. Yes, you might sometimes struggle with how you look, but if you focus on the bigger mission behind what you're doing, it will help you to want to put yourself out there more. It is also super important to do the prep-work before the shoot. Get your hair blown out, hire a professional makeup artist, and go shopping with a stylist. Going that extra mile to prepare really helps boost your confidence overall.


Embrace who you are right now.
Tweet This via @mikifoto

Doing Your Part As the Photographer

In order to do you part as the photographer, you have to have a conversation with your client weeks before the actual shoot. You need to learn about their business, learn about what their mission is, what they are putting out there, what the goals are for these pictures and where they are going to use them. Getting to know all about their insecurities right up front can be so beneficial for you as the photographer to prepare for the shoot. The more you know, the more you can guide them to feel the best they possibly can, allowing the gold and excitement inside of them to shine through. It is definitely a process. Do your prep work and find a way to help your clients live in that moment and have some fun!

Picking A Photographer That Is Right For You

The first thing Mallika recommends when you are trying to find the right photographer for you and your business is to look at their portfolio. Spend some time looking at the images and make sure that they look consistent, that there is a distinct style, and that it matches what you want for your brand. The second is to look at testimonials. What is it like to work with the photographer? Often times there may not be headshot-specific photographers available, so it is important to pick up the phone and have a conversation with them to make sure that they understand what your business goals are for this shoot. Next, make sure that your photographer is skilled in making you feel comfortable, and knows how to use light in a way that suits you. Finally, they have to be willing to make time for you and ask the questions to help them understand your mission and goals.

DIY Photography Tips for the Amateur Creative

Getting your branding photographs done is a huge investment and it is something to save for. But everybody has a different budget and we are all at different points in our business journey. Mallika recommends the Canon Rebel Series, which is very affordable, if you want to do your own headshots. Another great way to sprinkle in your own DIY photos is to show the behind the scenes of where you are going, and who you are working, by simply using your iPhone. It is a camera that is always with you, and it allows for this daily dialogue that you can have with your audience. Partnering up with another entrepreneur is also a great way to get your photographs done you can simply shoot for each other. All you need is one professional photo for people to remember, and you will be off to a great start!

The Five Must-Have Shots For Your Brand

If you are going to have anything in your brand photo library, Mallika recommends five specific, must-have shots. The first, obviously, is a headshot. Next, you should also include a lifestyle shot. A lifestyle photo is one that portrays your personality, or what it feels like to work with you. The third one is your workspace. Everybody likes to see how it all goes down, so pull the curtain and give people that VIP inside look at what you are doing. A fourth one would be a branded shot, which includes your brand colors, logo, or business card — representing your brand as a whole.  Then, the last one would be the end results a client will receive from working with you or purchasing your product. You want to show what the product, or the end result, looks like in use.


  • Learn why a headshot is the visual representation of your business. [0:02:41.6]
  • Understand the importance of becoming the face of your brand. [0:03:59.0]
  • Find out how to become comfortable with putting yourself out there. [0:06:27.5]
  • Discover how you can do your part as the photographer to make your clients more comfortable. [0:08:52.3]
  • How to pick a photographer that is right for you and weeding out those who aren’t. [0:13:40.1]
  • Hear Mallika’s photography DIY tips for the amateur creative to do at home. [0:19:39.9]
  • Find out which five shots are must-haves for your brand photography. [0:30:37.9]

#TalkStrategyToMe [0:46:06.6]

  1. Before hiring a photographer, get in touch with the story you want to tell.
  2. Look at the photography done for others to get a sense of what could apply to your brand.
  3. Once you get your photos, use them!


Mallika Malhotra

MikiFoto + Co

Website | Instagram | Facebook

Mallika Malhotra is a fun-loving photographer and brand energizer who works with women entrepreneurs, inspiring them to express themselves, share their stories, and unleash their creativity through photography, branding and live workshops. She combines her strategic business sense with her photography skills to help her fellow lady bosses stand out and own their message with confidence. Her mission is to empower her clients to become incomparable and unforgettable leaders in their industries.

Based in northern NJ, Mallika also teaches live workshops on branding, vision boarding and iPhoneography as well as hosting local networking soirees. When she is not taking photos or building brands, she is at home with her three sons and husband, drinking coffee or red wine and dreaming about their next global adventure.


  • What is a headshot?
  • Being the face of your brand.
  • Tips to prepare for a branding shoot.
  • Making your clients more comfortable at a shoot.
  • Picking the right photographer for you.
  • DIY photography tips.
  • Five must-have brand photography shots.




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