If you’ve been following our Art of Marketing Your Yoga Business series, you should now understand the importance of having a sound website in place, and of regular blogging to engage with and grow your audience.
But, of course, every website and blog needs images, and this is particularly important in the yoga world. Striking images bring a website to life and bring out the personality of your unique brand.
Images can be off-putting
It’s surprising how many people get this wrong, though, which can be a disaster – using the wrong images can actually put people off. Complete beginners could easily be discouraged by pictures of people bending themselves into a pretzel, or of teachers giving intimate adjustments to students. You need to consider all types of visitors to your site: beginners and more advanced practitioners; those who know you and those who don’t. The images on your yoga website need to portray what you offer as safe and welcoming.
How to find good images
Search the library
If you don’t have a lot of time or money, there are several image libraries you can turn to, to help you find good quality images.
Most of these charge a small fee for using their images and you’ll need to set up a free account to get started. You then add credits to your account and use those credits to buy the images. The prices vary, so you should be able to find suitable images quite cheaply. There are also some free image libraries, but they don’t have such a wide selection.
Some of our favourites are:
Do it yourself
However, the best images are the ones you create yourself.
If you use other people’s images online without their permission, you’ll almost certainly be breaking copyright laws. You can use an image library to get around this problem, but you usually have to pay and your images won’t be unique. Creating your own images means you own the copyright on them and they’ll be completely original.
If you don’t already have your own images and you’re not particularly good behind a camera, you might need to get a photographer to help you. At Wildheart, we’ve put together a photography guide aimed specifically at yoga businesses. This is an invaluable tool to give your photographer if you’re having a photoshoot done. And when you start working with us, we’ll give this to you absolutely free.
For a more detailed guide to creating images for your website, check out our post A picture says a thousand words… but not if it takes too long to load!
Top tips for yoga images
Don’t make the same mistakes other yoga businesses make! Read our top tips for making the most of the images on your yoga website.
Put your students first
So many yoga teachers make the mistake of focussing their website on themselves – in fact, the first image you often see is of them. This is bad practice. Your students should come first, then you.
You should focus on what you offer, why it’s different to others and how it will benefit people, and your images need to reflect this. Yes, you should definitely feature your profile picture on the About page, and perhaps a few others of you around the site – preferably smiling and/or interacting with students. But most of the images should not be solely of you.
It’s very common to see rooms full of downward dogs shot from behind (excuse the pun) on yoga websites. However, this isn’t very flattering and is best avoided.
Make it look fun
Of course, a lot of yoga images will be serious, and it can be good to include a few meditative shots. But it’s good to include some lighthearted images too, e.g. people tied up in knots but smiling and having fun with it. This shows a more approachable side to yoga.
Having a photoshoot done in a yoga studio with a group class lends itself to lots of interesting angles and uniform poses. Don’t be afraid to get creative.
If you’re planning a photoshoot in your yoga studio, or you want to use images of students on your website, don’t forget to ask their permission first.
It’s not all about the yoga
As well as purely asana shots, it can be nice to include some details too, e.g. plants, flowers, statues, close-ups of books, etc. And don’t forget to include any other services you offer, like complementary therapies. Mix it up to keep it interesting and inspiring.
How can Wildheart help?
When you sign up to our New Yoga Website package, we’ll give you valuable advice about your images and share our photography guide with you if you’re arranging a photoshoot. We’ll also resize and upload your images to your new site, and make sure each page has a an associated image for sharing on social media.
We also offer competitive hourly consulting rates if you’d like help with your images outside of our standard packages. Contact us to find out more.
Remember in Are you ready to market your yoga business we explained why marketing is like baking a cake? Well, now that you’ve prepared the foundations of your cake, i.e. your website, it’s time to spread that delicious email marketing icing!
In the next post we’ll explore how to use the power of email marketing to grow your yoga community. Don’t miss it!