The Importance of a Great Profile Picture
Today it seems as though everyone has an online presence on one or more social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, G+, to name a few, and virtually everyone uses these sites to either promote themselves, their products or services.
Take advantage of the opportunity provided by social media to post a profile picture, and make sure to do it right. Rather than using an image of your pet or a sports team you like, it’s a good idea to post a real picture of yourself. Doing so makes it easier for potential clients and employers alike to recognise and remember you. It also humanises you and makes you easier to connect with. However, it is important that your profile picture portrays the right image, and make sure to keep it up to date.
Taking or choosing the correct profile photo can be quite daunting, so we’ve assembled a few guidelines to help make the process a little easier!
Does the image look like you?
When deciding on a profile photograph pick one that looks similar to how you currently look. While you may think you looked better 20 years ago, people want to see the present you. Additionally, the image should be natural and not overly edited.
Dress the part
If you’re going to have professional photos done or take one yourself, you’ve got several stylistic choices to make. Match your profile picture with your industry. If you are a professional, you should appear well groomed, wearing a professional outfit. If your business is more casual, then wear clothes to reflect that, but make sure they are smart and clean. Do not use a glamour shot, unless, of course, you are a model.
Head and shoulders vs. full body shot
In most cases, a shot that only shows your head and shoulders is an ideal choice for a profile shot. In fact, some social media websites recommend just a headshot. Remember not to zoom in too close, and ensure there is plenty of room around the edges to meet sizing requirements of the various social platforms. If it helps to illustrate the business you are in, a small prop can be used, but make sure it does not dominate the picture and take the focus from you.
Choose a plain background
In most cases, you are trying to promote yourself so choose a background that is as plain as possible so that viewers aren’t distracted by it. A plain, light coloured sheet hung on the wall is often a great choice for a do-it-yourself photo background.
Don’t sit facing the camera
You aren’t taking a mugshot or a passport photograph so you don’t need to sit directly facing the camera. A much more subtle look for a professional profile image is to angle your shoulders between 30 to 45 degrees to the camera and then slightly turn your head to face it. This pose looks great and is flattering for most people.
Find someone to take the picture
If you can’t find a suitable picture and have to take one, you are likely to get better results if someone else takes the picture. When you interact with someone, your facial expressions are often more natural and engaging, making for a much more authentic photograph. Many professional photographers such as Melissa Histon offer corporate portrait packages. However, if you do decide to take it yourself, use the camera’s self-timer and set it up on a tripod.
Show us your professional profile pics! Did you hire a professional or snap it yourself? What kind of advice would you give to those creating their own profile pics?
I am Belinda Bow
I love all things marketing and I thrive on seeing a business become re-energised and flourish. I am excited about life and I adore my family.
Within these articles, you’ll find some helpful tips and some real guidance to help you make the most of your business, and gain a good understanding of all things marketing.