The 8 Essential Elements of a Landscaping Portfolio

For Green Industry professionals, a compelling landscaping portfolio is essential. An impressive Shade Structures portfolio builds your credibility, displays your professionalism and gives prospects a sneak peek at what your landscape business is all about.

So, what should Green Industry pros include as part of their landscaping portfolio? Photography is the most obvious answer, and no doubt it is important, but don’t overlook other elements that should be included in your portfolio.

Here are the 8 essential elements of a compelling landscaping portfolio:

1. Photography

Images of your landscaping work are the most important aspect of your portfolio. Because of this, be sure to follow some basic guidelines. First, organize your photographs in a logical way. You can organize your images by project (“Smith Residence” for example) or by project type (“Patios” for example). Also organize your photographs in a logical sequence and include “before” images as well as images taken during the construction of a landscaping project. This variety of images gives a viewer greater context.

Only use your absolute best images in your landscaping portfolio. One extraordinary photograph delivers more impact than a dozen mediocre images. Go for quality over quantity. Be sure to include a variety of images, including photographs of hardscape elements, garden ornament and detail shots of paving patterns, iron work and plant combinations. Including images from different seasons of the year as well as night imagery makes for an even more compelling landscaping portfolio.

2. Drawings and landscape plans

People love to look at beautiful drawings. So be sure to include images of your landscape plans in your landscaping portfolio. As mentioned above, include images of only your absolute best work. Include perspectives and elevation drawings, plan-view enlargements and even sketches. Include whatever drawings you think will best showcase your talents.

3. Testimonials

Include testimonials from clients as well as other professionals you have worked with. If people are saying great things about you and your landscape business, you’ll want to include this in your landscaping portfolio. If you have received Thank You cards, notes or emails with glowing comments, copy them and add them to your portfolio. Including the original cards and notes as part of your presentation is much more powerful than just showing written comments.

4. Special features

If you or your landscape business has been featured in a newspaper or magazine be sure to reproduce it and include it in your portfolio. Similar to testimonials, these third party endorsements give you instant credibility in the eyes of your prospects.

5. Published writing

Many Green Industry professionals write articles and columns for local newspapers and magazines. If you’re part of this crowd, be sure to include reprints in your landscaping portfolio. If you’ve written for Green Industry publications, also include this in your portfolio. Your prospects won’t read the article, but they will consider you to be an expert in your field because of the authority and credibility that comes with writing for industry publications.

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