Does your headshot really matter? Yes, your photo is a visual element of your brand. That photo on your bio, blog, social media, or company website is a visual reflection of you, your work, and your personal brand.
They say a photo is worth a thousand words, and it’s true that the photo you choose to accompany your social media, corporate bio, or resume says volumes about you. It displays your professional self to potential customers, colleagues, competitors, and hiring influencers. That’s a big statement and a wide audience for a simple photo.
Here are 6 simple tips for designing the perfect visual element of your brand:
- DO update regularly. Your photo should allow people to easily identify the way you currently look. No matter how much you prefer your profile from ten years ago, using an older photo makes you seem dishonest, or just plain careless about your public image.
- DO go professional. A professional photographer will not only get your best side and photograph the best possible you, but can also gently and discreetly edit out a blemish or a few wrinkles here and there to soften reality just a bit. No matter how skilled the amateur, there’s no substitute for a professional.
- DON’T lose sight of you. A simple, conventional headshot in front of a dark background is perfectly acceptable. But if you want a photo that stands out, consider going into the field. Show yourself. Architects can get a photo on a job site with a rolled-up blueprint. A lawyer could pose on the granite courthouse steps. A manager at an automotive plant could choose a photo with the assembly line in the background. You can get creative while still being completely professional.
- DO look into the lens. It can be difficult for those who are introverted or modest to focus directly on the camera. It’s worth the effort. Looking directly at the camera lens makes you seem direct, honest, professional, and confident. That’s a good look on you.
- DO pay attention to body language. Sit or stand up straight, and find a way to enjoy the process of being photographed. That positive body language is very noticeable to the viewer. It says you’re confident, successful, and worth knowing.
- DON’T forget that your photo is part of your branding. Make sure the pose, clothing, and setting match what you want to say about yourself and your brand. It should match the overall message you want to send about who you are as a professional.
With these tips, you’re ready to sit down with a professional photographer and plan out the photo shoot for your current headshot. With your personal branding in mind, you and the photographer can design and execute the perfect photo to add depth and a great visual element to your personal brand vision.