3 Steps to the Perfect Profile Picture

Dubbed “the new handshake,” professional headshots are now the first introduction to you, your business, and your personal brand—shouldn’t that intro be the best it can be? With 93% of HR professionals and recruiters tapping into LinkedIn to find quality candidates—plus 2 in 3 on Facebook and more than half utilizing Twitter—that headshot has countless applications in your professional life. Should your profile pic be the family vacation, the fun night out, or worse—the logo or abstract shot? Or should it be a powerful, compelling, and confidence-building headshot that makes prospective clients, employers, and partners want to click “Connect?”.

1. Getting Ready for your One-Hour Headshot Session

Before heading into the studio think about all of the things that make up your personal brand and what you want others to take away from a glance at your profile page. Jot down some keywords and phrases and bring them to your shoot. Think about what exemplifies your personal brand to you.

Are you a chef? An educator? A writer? Are there props that could help tell your story? Bring them along!   We can take a couple of different shots—in different outfits—so you’ll have a series to choose from. You may want to tailor your profile picture based on the social media platform you’re using. Remember to have fun! A relaxed, comfortable subject naturally exudes confidence.

2. Match your look to your Image

It’s important that your look matches the image you’re trying to convey.  What you wear on a daily basis is a great place to start. Solid colors are always a good choice, as are tops with strong collars and necklines. 

Even though you’ll only be shot from the shoulders up, it’s important you’re pulled together from head to toe—you may want a shot or two that are pulled back a bit. Aim for clothes that complement your skin and eye tones and, overall, steer clear of very bold colors.

3. Personal Items to bring to your Headshot Session
___ Shirt/Blouse/Jacket Bring a clean, pressed/steamed, shirt or blouse to wear at the session.

___ Jewellery While you’ll want to keep it simple any pieces of jewelry that expresses who you are as an individual or your company pin you should wear it.

___ Glasses Our focus is on your eyes and facial expression, if you wear glasses all of the time you should wear them in your headshots - we’ll adjust our lighting.

___ Lint Brush We will have a lint brush on hand, however, you may want to bring your own.

___ Comb/Brush/Hairspray If you have hair you will want to bring these personal items along - we will have a mirror for you to check yourself.

___ Makeup Very few things are as personal as makeup - please prepare your own makeup in advance and bring your own supply for touch ups

___ Props In personal branding sessions we will make pictures that go from the head down through your upper body, one of the most common questions we are asked is “what do I do with my hands?”. If you have specific props that you can include in your pictures you’ll have something to do with your hands

How often should you have your profile picture made? It depends on the industry you are in.

The Seasonal Headshot

If you work in a seasonal or fashion-oriented business we recommend updating your profile picture every quarter. 

Just like the Starbucks brand has different drinks reflecting the time of year you can show your different facets. each can reflect their own ideal; a fresh spring look, a casual summer look, a comfortable autumn mood and cool winter aesthetic. 

The Annual Headshot
If you are updating your website or your advertising materials on an annual basis you will want to have a consistent look and feel throughout the year. 

As much as we don't see changes in the mirror every day the "proximity fallacy" comes into play and eventually people will see that your profile picture doesn't reflect who you have become. 

By updating your headshot on an annual basis you will avoid people thinking that you are out of date.