Profile pictures play an important role in social media. Your photo says a lot about you and your personality, so you want to send the right message. Initially social media sites were intended to create a way to socialize with others, even if you were not with them face-to-face. Still today, social media is about connecting. And if you really want to encourage people to connect with you, you’re going to want a friendly face smiling back at them.
Your profile picture is one of the most important parts of your profile on any social networking site and yet many people neglect their photo or make common mistakes with their profile photo.
Here are a few “do’s” and “don’ts” for profile pictures that can help you choose the perfect one for your social media profile.
Profile Picture Do’s:
- Consider why you’re joining the site when choosing your profile picture. If you’re making the account for personal reasons, then you can use a casual photo but if you’re using it for a business account, then choose a photo that’s professional looking.
- Choose a quality photo that produces a clear, crisp image for the best results. Editing tools can help to make the photo a little clearer but if it’s blurry or too dark, they won’t help much.
- Be consistent with your image when you have a business account. You want people to make the connection between you and your brand. You can change your photo from time to time but it’s not something you want to do regularly.
- Choose a photo that truly represents who you are. A picture in a natural setting where you look relaxed and happy is a great choice.
- Look for the dimensions and adjust your photo to match the requirements of the site you’re using when creating your account. Different networking sites use different dimensions for their profile pictures, so you can’t use one size for all your accounts.
- Use a picture that portrays confidence and approachability for the best results whether you use social media for personal use or for business. Would you want to be friends with someone whose profile picture made them look angry, withdrawn or distant?
Profile Picture Don’ts
- Use a blurry, dark or hard to see image because viewers won’t be able to tell what you look like, which is not good for your image.
- Use a photo that misrepresents you in any way. For example, don’t use an old photo or one that belongs to someone else.
- Use photos that you wouldn’t want your family members to see. Remember, your profile picture is public on many sites so anyone can see it.
- Choose a photo of you and someone else together unless you have their permission first. The other person may not want their photo posted on a public site.
The body language that you portray in the photo is very important, too. Are you standing, sitting or leaning against something? Are you looking at the camera or away from it? It does matter because your body position sends different messages to the viewers.
Take a close look at your photo to see what type of message you’re sending to your followers. Are you sending the right message or do you need to edit your profile picture?