A picture paints a thousand words
A surefire way to damage your professional image is to use unprofessional photos on your social networking sites.
Sure, if you’re a rural vet then it makes absolute sense to have your Linked-in profile photo showing you cheerily smiling alongside Daisy the cow.
But as a business professional, a good-quality social media headshot shows that you take your work, and your customers, seriously. And poorly chosen photos can often contradict the business image you’re trying to portray.
If you have an ‘open’ personal social media presence on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Whatsapp or Linked-In – you’re mug-shot is available for all the world to see.
Even if you’ve adjusted your security settings, visitors might not be able to see your full profile and any personal details; but they will almost certainly have access to your profile picture and/or cover photo. So it’s imperative that it gives a good impression.
Professional headshots are terrific, of course – but they’re not a necessity. You can get pretty decent results from phone cameras these days, as long as you take a few golden rules into consideration.
Here are some things to think about before updating your profile pic in future:
- Your profile photo should show a clear, head and shoulders image of you, and you alone.
- Have your face well positioned within the frame – don’t under or over crop.
- Don’t use logos on a personal page – people want to relate to YOU on social media, not necessarily your company.
- Random mobile phone shots and selfies are a big no-no, especially any that are blurry or poorly lit.
- Watch out for fussy or over complex things in the background – they’re really distracting.
- Resist the urge to include alcohol, firearms or weapons in your profile picture – it’s not the sort of thing your customer wants to see.
- Regardless of how cute they are – exclude kids and pets (for safety reasons if nothing else).
- Rethink the trout-pouts, muscle shots, mirror shots, cheese & sleaze – not cool!
If all else fails, and you just can’t seem to get it right … why not commission us to take your headshot for you. See our photography page for details.
© Anne-Marie Armstrong 2017