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Why Your Online Profile Pic Matters More Than You Think

These days, most people reading this will be a member of a social network. Most people will be a member of several. Many of these networks are used to achieve different things – socialising with friends, chatting about a specific topic, getting or giving advice, dating, or even looking for a new career.

Staff headshot in black and white

It seems odd then, that many people use the same online profile pic for all of these types of sites. Think about it – if you were looking to attract a new employer, should you use the same profile pic that you’re using to attract your soulmate? While that quickly snapped smartphone pic of you out with friends is probably fine for Facebook, would it be appropriate to use as your author photo on your blog?

 

Generally you want to consider what you’re using the social network for and what you want your image to convey. For employment sites or business oriented networks like LinkedIn, you probably want to convey your serious side and professional nature – unless of course you work as a clown! For a dating site you might want to make sure your photo shows off your good side and attractive qualities, whilst playing down things you maybe feel aren’t your best features. (By the way, people are now cynical of the ‘high angle’ selfie trick.)

Staff headshot in black and white

Although today’s smartphones have amazing cameras on them, it’s worth remembering that the camera is just a tool – the best artists can create incredible art with a cheap pencil and people who don’t have artistic tendencies can’t create good art with thousands of pounds worth of computers and software. A good photographer knows how to light people to make them look their best, coaches their clients during the session to get the best out of them, pays attention to details like which is their best side, or if their hair is out of place and fixes things that need it in post – all things that are a lot harder to do on your own.

Staff headshot in black and white

Humans are drawn to other human faces, which is why two dots and a semi-circular arc can be made to seem compelling: 🙂 and we talk a lot in visual terms: “Looking for an employee” “Do you see? (understand?)” “I’ll see you later.” We even talk about people’s perceived intelligence in terms of light – a bright person, a dull or dull-witted person. We even say of food; “The first bite is with the eye.” So it is with online profile pics – your first impression is a visual one, so why would you settle for an average picture? That’s like turning up to a date or job interview in the clothes you would normally wear for a quiet night in binge watching your favourite TV shows while eating ice cream.

Model having a bad hair day

You wouldn’t want your bad hair day representing you online, would you?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The benefits of having a professional portrait or headshot to use for your online presence is that you get professional looking images and during a normal session, you will be able to get shots for all your required profiles  – occasionally you might even get one shot which is so great, that it can be used across most, or even all your profiles. Charles here used this picture I took of him on Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram, for example.

Staff headshot in black and white

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Considering your online profile pic is often the first thing people will notice about you , long before your likes and interests, don’t you owe it to yourself to give people a good one?

Staff headshot in black and white

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you’re in the Cambridgeshire, Suffolk or Norfolk areas, I’d love to help you out with a new online profile pic. Get in touch now to book your photo session.

Leave me a comment!

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