Profile Pictures – Just How Important Are They?

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It’s true when they say that you never get a second chance to make a first impression.  Not only does this apply to the everyday aspects of life from making friends, to dating, to networking, job hunting and now social media marketing. Perhaps you always make a good impression in person, but in the online world, it’s a completely different story which begins with your face.  When it comes to social media, your profile picture is very important whether you’re on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and beyond.

Let’s start with sizing. Each social media account has specific sizing instructions so that your profile picture is displayed evenly and within the size constraints. Most of the time you can expect a square size, so keep that in mind! If you upload a rectangular image, it will be cropped to fit the square.

Think of your profile picture as the overall representation of your page, not only to current friends or followers, but anyone searching for and viewing your profile(s). Your profile picture appears in the newsfeeds of your followers, any posts to your timeline, anytime you reply to comments or posts and anytime you post to a page. Because you’re representing yourself or your brand on so many different avenues, it’s important to use a high quality photo or logo. If you have it in your budget, we recommend a professional headshot or high quality logo.

When it comes to profile pictures, let’s talk headshots. According to Chet Coonrod, owner of Coonrod Photography,

“You would never arrive at an important meeting not looking professional…you should project the same level of professionalism online and in print.”

And we couldn’t have said it better! Here are few items to keep in mind when it comes to your headshot.

  1. Attire: Depending on your industry, you’ll want to dress to represent yourself in your line of work. For example, if you are in fashion, you’ll want to show off your stylish wardrobe. But if you’re representing a law firm, you should wear a suit or dress shirt.
  2. Simplicity: Try not to be over the top with your look.
  3. Background: Opt for a clean background free of distractions. After all, you don’t want to direct attention away from your face.
  4. You: You don’t want to confuse the viewer by including anyone else in your image.
  5. Personality: Smile or strive to look approachable.

To sum up, when it comes to your profile picture, do it well! Strive to become the best “virtual” version of yourself.

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