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If you’re under the age of, say, 25, then this is probably a no-brainer to you. Kids today take so many pictures of themselves…well, I won’t go into that. But if you’re 45 instead of 25, like I am, then I don’t think it’s as obvious: take good photos along the way.

Here is where I am going with this. The most valuable thing you have is your personal brand. Your employer can fire you. Buildings can burn down. You can go broke. But your personal brand is something that travels with you. It’s kind-of like the old football mantra: defense travels. Same with your brand.

I am not yet a millionaire, but I have my fingers in many projects – some straight business, some speculative, some music-related. But it seems that whatever the project, I am always looking for photographs to use with marketing or branding material. And that includes photos of myself and of projects I have worked on.

I keep a bunch of those things on my computer. I’m a music guy, and currently I am getting set to begin releasing some self-recorded material. So guess what? I need pics. And I have quite a few. Some go back as far as 15 years, up on stage with my old band. Some were taken just a year or two ago. Some were intended originally to along with business marketing stuff. But I can also use it for the music project. I can mix and match.

I also use them for personal business branding. It makes things interesting. Now, certainly, I use a lot of stock photography to go along with blog posts and such. If all I ever did was post a picture of myself with every article I ever wrote, I think it would start to look a little too self-aggrandizing. But sometimes that is what is called for (such as with this article, since that is sort-of the whole point).

As interesting things happen to you, your business, your family or anyone in your circle, take pictures. Even if you don’t have a use for them right now, there might come a day when you need some imagery to along with an article or other marketing piece. So take good photos along the way and hold onto them. Hell, even if you never use them for anything, when you get old you might enjoy just looking back on some of them just to remember what happened.

Holler at me if you could use some help with your personal brand marketing. I’ll bring a camera (or at least a phone).