LinkedIn is the leading online professional network across the globe, whose goal is to promote employment and business endeavours. So, having a professional looking headshot on LinkedIn is paramount. It is as essential as having a good cover letter when you apply for a job, it is what prospective employers and clients use to form the first impression of you. But a profile photo can help describe whether you’re trustworthy, professional or even real to those viewing your profile.
There are a few things to consider when taking a headshot for your LinkedIn profile.
Taking a headshot in a grey or white background is the way to go. A patterned, dark or coloured background could be distracting to viewers. Although, if the plain background is not your style, you can take a photo in a work environment like an office space. However, the office needs to be neatly organized to avoid portraying the wrong impression.
Quality of the Photo
When taking a profile photo, ensure that the image is captured in a high resolution. This is because you want to portray professionalism and a clear image shows that you paid attention to the finer details. Additionally, avoid cropping images as it results in pixelated and low-quality images. Bad quality pictures could make people have doubts about your professionalism.
Your outfit is one of the most critical elements that need to be considered. Depending on the field you work in, it’s always safe to take up a business-casual look, If you work in the corporate world, consider taking a picture in a suit to match how your peers present themselves. The colour of the selected attire should also contrast the background to enhance your appearance. If the attire chosen is light coloured, the environment should remain dark and vice versa.
Lighting could easily alter your look if the picture is taken in the dark or inadequately lit room. When taking headshots, consider taking the picture in front of the window since it provides natural light. Avoid use of flash because they are unflattering on the face. If you’re unable to get proper lighting, take the picture in a studio because they provide near perfect surroundings.
Hair and/or Makeup
If relevant, apply makeup that enhances your natural look. These include nude lipstick and mascara so that you look awake and fresh. Whether straight or curled, hair should be worn down and kept simple. For men, make sure you have a fresh haircut and your hair styled for the day to look neat and tidy.
Do what you know works for you but keep some of this in mind when you’re in front of the Camera. Hold your chin out and down while taking the picture to manifest a bold appearance. Hold your shoulders back and look confident in your stance. People are looking at your photo and making a decision about you from the very first second, so slouching, not smiling or looking away isn't going to cut it for any professional platform especially Linkedin.
Expressions could either be a fierce look, a laugh, soft tooth smile or a traditional smile. They matter a lot and depending on the industry you work in, your particular persona you wish to extend through the camera should be highlighted here. Remember, to use your business smile, not your weekend smile when you’re out on the town.
Why You’re Doing This
Whether you’re taking the picture yourself or are engaging the services of a professional photographer, most, if not all of the above elements need to be considered. When adhered to, your photo could be one of the most viewed headshots on LinkedIn, and this could get you your next job, or better relationships with potential clients and customers.
Did you know that you can hire a photographer to do your headshot for you and your team? Perfocal offers a hand-picked selection of camera pros who deliver high-quality photography for fixed fees starting from £49. Book a headshot today.