Its 2022 and we’ve now been through two whole years of staying socially distanced from friends, co-workers and loved ones. The way we work has definitely changed and work from home is becoming the norm. The Internet and social media are some of our main sources of connection. More and more, people are interacting with us and getting to know us via that little 1×1 square we put out into the world as our profile photo, and believe it or not, what you put into that square matters. Sure, we all have a camera on our iPhone and it’s so easy to just turn it around and take a “selfie.” A selfie is fine for your personal social media platforms. But if you are interacting with social media for your business, upgrading your headshot to a professional image may be well worth the investment. Here are a few reasons why:
1. First Impressions are Lasting Impressions
Confirming that old adage, “You never get a second chance to make a first impression,” research conducted by Princeton psychologists confirmed that it takes a mere 1/10th of a second to form an impression of a stranger from their face. You have a tenth of a second, literally the blink of an eye. Shouldn’t you be putting your best face forward? A headshot that is well posed and properly lit will definitely show off the best version of you!
2. Friends Don’t Let Friends Use Selfies – Hire a Pro
As tempted as you may be to use an iPhone selfie, just don’t. Likewise, just because your friend has a “nice camera” does not ensure that the images they produce are going to be professional quality. Professional photographers study lighting and posing and know how to make you look like the best version of yourself. Tiny, seemingly subtle movements can make a big difference. Light and angles are used to be slimming and flattering.
Fun fact … did you know that the direction of a head tilt can convey either a masculine or feminine body posture?
3. May I Have your Attention, Please?
Thanks to the increase of electronic media, we are bombarded with marketing and messaging now more than ever. Everyone and everything is vying for your attention at once. It is currently estimated that the average person will encounter between 6,000 to 10,000 ads of some type every single day. And there you are just trying to be you and make a good first impression with your profile picture. You could always try a fancy head bouquet when you need to stand out from all the noise, but if you’re not quite up for that, having a professionally made headshot will help. People do recognize professional imagery when they see it, and it will make you get noticed.
True story … a client once came in for professional headshots, (suit and tie) and while we were at it, he asked for a casual look to put on his Match.com dating profile. A week later, he sent us a note to let us know that interest in his dating profile had gone through the roof! Nothing changed but the image. Same great guy that was there all along, but his professional image got lots more visitors stopping by to check out his profile. He’s married now! We don’t know if we can take credit for that, but we know we did play a part in helping him attract attention. Whatever your reason, going the extra mile to have a professional headshot made will help you to stand out from the crowd.
Yes, seriously. Remember when I said that first impressions are lasting impressions? Taking the time and effort to invest in having a professional headshot makes a statement that you are serious about your endeavor, whether it is your career or your dating profile. A professional image sends a message that you are willing to go that extra mile to make yourself stand out. It could be that something extra that gets your resume pulled out of the heap for a second look, gains you a “swipe” in the right direction, or makes a potential business client pick up the phone and hire you.
5. Hello, It’s Me
Your headshot image should be thought of as your personal branding statement. It’s your opportunity to show the world who you really are. A lifestyle branding headshot can capture more than just your face, and be shot to showcase more of your personality. Perhaps you have an interesting or creative job or hobby that you’d like to portray, which won’t be captured accurately with a conventional suit and tie portrait. By upgrading to a lifestyle branding headshot, you can express your true self.
6. Hello, It’s Still Me
Has your look changed recently? Perhaps you finished your beard during quarantine! Maybe you completely changed your hairstyle or color, put on or took off a few pounds, or anything else that may have you looking a little different. It’s a great time to upgrade your headshot to keep your image current and keep you recognizable! It’s important to project an honest and accurate portrayal of yourself.
7. New Year, New You
And if you have made some changes in your appearance, why not celebrate it and treat yourself to a brand new headshot? It can be quite empowering to have a professional portrait of yourself. Sometimes, feeling a little fancy may be just the boost in confidence you need to encourage you to hit “send” on a job application, grant proposal or any other goal you’ve had your eye on.