Research shows that just having a picture makes your profile on LinkedIn 14 times more likely to be viewed by others.To increase your response and referral rates, invest in your profile picture. It’s your first chance to communicate that you are friendly, likeable, and trustworthy. These attributes are crucial to getting prospects to engage with you. Think of it as your first step to building your personal brand on LinkedIn and making yourself stand out from other recruiters.
The key is only use quality photos for your professional profile. Here are 5 tips in choosing a good photo:
1. A photo that looks like you.
Have you ever had the experience of first seeing someone’s picture online and then meeting them in person only to find that they look completely different or way younger? It can be startling and may make you question credibility of the person. A good LinkedIn photo should reflect how you look currently on a daily basis – e.g. your hair, makeup, etc. A photo that looks like you shows you are comfortable and confident about the way you look and who you are.
2. Make sure your face can be seen
It sounds obvious but we still come across many LinkedIn profiles that show more of the wonderful scenery at the back, making it very hard to actually see the person’s face. Not to forget the profile photo box at LinkedIn is much smaller compared to other social media pages. My recommendation is to just see your face ( headshot ) or a half body shot.
3. Choose the right expression.
As Tyra Banks would say: smile with your eyes. We all want to appear warm and friendly, whichever profession or industry you may be in. You don’t have to wear a big goofy grin if that feels unnatural, but don’t look too serious (aka scary). Exude approachability. That way, potential employers can imagine having a pleasant conversation with you.
4. Wear what you’d wear to work.
Obviously, we do not want to appear under dressed for our professional profiles. Wear clothes that match the level of dressiness at your office or industry. Step it up by a small notch can add credibility but you don’t want to be over dressed as well. Solid colours tend to do best on camera. Avoid big logos or patterns. Ironing helps.
5. Choose the right background
Choose a good photography location that matches the style of the photo you have in mind. Classic plain background is a popular good choice and instantly speaks professionalism. You can also choose an unqiue background that matches your style to add extra touch and personality. In any case, you should still be the focal point of the photo.