A professional profile picture makes you look and feel legit online. It’s one of the first impressions you make on the internet – on your website and every social media platform you’re on.
There are so many ways to do the unprofessional profile picture…
The Crop Job (like a bad breakup)
The Mug Shot
The Creepy Web Cam
You know who I’m talking about, you’ve seen them.
But I promise it’s really not that hard to take a professional profile picture without spending a fortune.
Don’t let a small budget get in the way of you looking professional, legitimate, and like the rock star you are online. Professional photo sessions can be hard on your budget. So when you’re first starting out, doing it well yourself is some badass, thrifty awesomeness.
#1 – Use a Tripod
Using a tripod allows you to get a decent photo of yourself without the teenager selfie look. You can take pictures from further away and crop to the size you need. If you don’t own one, see if you can borrow one or buy a used one online. If you think you might use one for other purposes like filming videos for your business, you can get inexpensive ones on Amazon.
Tripod accessories can be helpful – such as an attachment for your Android or iPhone. There are some inexpensive options that come with a Bluetooth remote that allows you to take the picture from afar without a timer. Most tripods come equipped to attach to most digital cameras – so if you’re going the camera route, accessories aren’t necessary and you can just use the timer function. Personally, I prefer the phone with remote option. You don’t have to rush and can take lots of pictures without having to go back to the phone/camera each time to set the timer again.
If you don’t want to mess with a tripod, grab a good friend or Biz Bestie that you trust and plan the photo shoot together. Be sure you’re on the same page about what look and feel you’re going for so that you get the shots you need.
#2 – Hair, Make-up, and The Perfect Outfit
You want to look like the best version of you. But you still want to look like you. Your hair and make-up should make you feel confident. That confidence will show in your profile picture.
As for your outfit, consider wearing a neutral color that flatters your skin tone, or one that matches your branding. Solid colors tend to show up better. Just be sure that you feel good about how you look.
#3 – Create a Feel that Fits Your Style and Branding – Settings, Poses, and Props
When choosing background, poses, etc. consider the theme and feel of your branding. Is it casual? Quirky? Bohemian? Luxurious?
You really don’t want to show a toothy, shit-eating-grin in front of an amusement park background if you are a grief counselor and your brand feel is supportive and soothing. But you might if you’re a children’s event planner – and you might even throw in some props like balloons or sparklers (but maybe not both – that sounds dangerous).
PRO TIP: For some ideas and inspiration, check out your peers, mentors, and business crushes. Look at their profile pictures on their social media accounts and websites. Pay attention to what they’re wearing, the backgrounds they used, the lighting, their makeup, and any props they might have used, etc. Just be sure to use it for inspiration and not to recreate a carbon copy. You want your photos to look like YOU, not someone else!
And FINALLY…be sure to take lots of pictures so that you have lots of options to choose from. But most of all, HAVE FUN WITH IT!