John CassidyFirst impressions count, Like it or not people searching for you online make their minds up about who you are based on your profile. And the single most important factor in your profile is your headshot.

Studies show that people make a decision on whether or not they like you within 100 milliseconds. One tenth of a second is all it takes to assess your profile photo and decide whether to trust you and work with you.

Unfortunately most people try and get away with a ‘selfie’ or an old snapshot. But typically it looks rushed and unprofessional. And if your image is not congruent with your brand, it could actually be losing you business. Worse still if you have no image your LinkedIn profile is 7 times less likely to be viewed at all.

So your personal image has a big influence on whether people want to connect with you or not. Meaning you could be loosing out on potential business or even a job interview just because your face didn’t stand out from the crowd…

So what are the benefits to having a professional headshot?

  1. Tell your audience they matter to you.  Show they matter enough for you to make an effort with how you look.  Turning up to a business meeting in old jeans probably isn’t going to win you the business.  Taking a photograph with your web cam is the photographic equivalent.
  2. Look your best.  We all have cherished photographs when we looked terrific – perhaps on holiday or at a wedding.  It has nothing to do with what we were wearing, and everything to do with how we are feeling.  Unfortunately we don’t have too many equivalent photographs in a business suit or other work attire.  A professional headshot ensures you look your best for the people you need to influence in your business or social life.
  3. Success isn’t an accident.  We often look at successful people and wish we had their luck, talent or breaks.  They obviously had advantages that we didn’t have – otherwise they wouldn’t be successful.  Actually, no – they just make smart decisions.  Making sure you have a great image is a smart decision in your personal success story.
  4. Look professional.  Whatever your occupation, a great photograph shows you mean business.  Whether you are a sportsperson, a business person, a landscape designer or an architect – the right image projects the qualities you want to project.  You wouldn’t leave your education to chance, so why leave your image to chance?
  5. See off the competition.  We compete with others professionally, socially and romantically.  It might sound harsh but it’s true.  Sometimes a photograph makes the difference between picking up the phone, or not.  Lingering over your web site, or not.  Making contact, or not.  Don’t let your competitors have a better online image than you.  After all – they don’t look half as good as you do.
  6. Social networking is here to stay.  Big business, political parties, people who want to keep in touch or make new contacts have all wised up to the fact that social networking is massive.  A good photograph speaks volumes – often enough to make new or old contacts stay long enough to read what you have to say.  Be net-savvy and look good on LinkedIn. Facebook and Twitter.

Great images of famous faces sell newspapers and magazines.  A great image of you can sell your cause more effectively than you might imagine.

 What are you waiting for?

Click here to view John’s brochure.

About the author

Leonnie has worked with the WATC team for over 5 years. Leonnie also runs her own Design company www.destinydesigns.co.uk.

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