The Perfect Shot: Carlos Bown on Creating Content for Your Gym

January 30, 2023 by
Photo Credit: Carlos’ Instagram (@bownmedia)
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As a full-time creator for the last five years, Carlos Bown has captured moments on and off the competition floor for industry-leading brands such as TYR, HWPO, Podium and Mayhem Athlete, just to name a few. He’s learned a lot throughout his experience, and he shared a few nuggets of wisdom with us in last week’s Coffee Break Conversation; particularly helpful for business owners and folks running a gym.

First, it’s important to note that “we buy pretty much everything online… everything is through images and videos”, says Bown. Even if your service offering is in-person, such as classes through an affiliate, the potential member likely discovers your gym through a web search or social media prior to stopping in. 

Keeping that in mind, a consistent presence of high quality content is a key step in making a great first impression. If you’re looking to hire a creative, seeking recommendations is a simple place to start.

“Word of mouth is definitely something good that you can use as a resource through your entrepreneur friends (or) business owners that have had previous experience with our videographers,” Bown suggests. 

Photographers and videographers prices can range dramatically based on a variety of factors, such as years of experience and equipment they’re using. To make sure you’re going to get the best end product for you, communicate clearly up front what you’re looking for. And, if you’re not sure (perhaps this is your first time investing in content creation), give some examples of other imagery that you like as some people prefer colder tones, warmer colors, more contrast-heavy photos and so forth. 

“Somebody can consider me a really good videographer or photographer, but my style might not match what they’re trying to accomplish for that specific project, right? Because everybody has a very specific style,” Bown said. “…And I think it’s super important for brands to know that before they hire somebody, they need to know exactly what to expect. I’ve shot weddings since 2019, and when somebody hires me, they know exactly what type of photos they’re going to be getting.” 

That said, don’t be afraid to just get started, and clean up your branding over time if you see fit.

“I know there are some businesses in town, here in Pensacola, that their vibe is more relaxing, friendly, and they like make Reels and stuff like that. And it works very well for them because that’s just how they are showing their business — it’s just more like relaxed stuff,” Bown explained.

Crowd-sourcing content from customers can be an inexpensive way to post consistently without a significant investment. Bown shared that some of the best creatives he knows in the industry today started by shooting for free in their local affiliate; serving as motivation for all the new, less-experienced and/or aspiring photogs out there.

“If you’re a photographer listening to this, maybe be open to taking some photos for your gym — it might take you to the CrossFit games in a couple of years.”

In this same interview, we chat about important things to know before resharing photos from Instagram, Bown’s podcast where he has in-depth interviews with creators in and out of the fitness realm and much more. You can watch the full conversation here — exclusive to Rx members. Not Rx? Join here for just $1 for the first four months.

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