According to LinkedIn’s own research, profiles with photos get 11x more views than those without. For most of us the prime benefit of being on LinkedIn is to raise our individual and business profile not having a photo is a major own goal.
Choosing the right photo however is equally important.
LinkedIn is a professional network. Your profile is your professional shop window. A carelessly chosen photo can completely undermine your credibility.
As you may have noticed there are many examples of inappropriate photos on LinkedIn. Perhaps these are attempts to express individuality – to stand out from the crowd – or just simply a case of grabbing the nearest image to hand.
If you are reading this and beginning to have a few doubts about your photo, here is my list of the 5 Ps to avoid when it comes to choosing your LinkedIn photo:
5 Ps to Avoid
1. Pets and partners
It’s surprising how often favourite pets from cats to horses make an appearance of LinkedIn. You may also have a pet name for your partner but there really is no place for them in your profile photo.
2. Pubs and parties
Alcohol relaxes us and can stimulate conversation but the only time you should have a glass in your hand on LinkedIn is if (like one of my clients) you are a wine merchant.
3. Posh hats and weddings
Wedding photos are common, after all they were professionally taken weren’t they.
And that might have cost a fortune but it won’t impress your business connections.
4. Parents and babies
Yes, little William is gorgeous but incongruous next to your impressive job title.
5. Pot smoking and pop festivals.
Let’s face it we all let our hair down at times but LinkedIn isn’t the place to advertise this.
And finally, one more bonus P to avoid…
The Pygmy photo which is so tiny that even your mother wouldn’t recognise you.
Make the right first impression!
Once someone lands on your profile you have probably less than two seconds to make that first impression. Having a professional and friendly looking headshot will provide important reassurance and begin to create a positive emotional connection with the viewer. Is your photo failing this test?
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