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What does your professional photograph say about you?

When it comes down to it, first impressions last a lifetime, as we’ve discussed at length before. Through any Google search, you want your employer, clientele or colleagues to be able to find the professional you, before they find the fun you. That is, the fun-loving John Smith who posts Instagram photos of cats doing ridiculous stunts. Leave out the rest; put your best foot forward.

 

Utilizing verified google profiles

Your face and name are a brand in and of themselves. It’s not easy to make a name for yourself, especially when consumers flock to places like Yelp to tell them if they’re going to like somewhere or not. People don’t know what they want; you have to know what they want, and we both know, they want professionalism.

You can use Google’s verified profile system, where you have to verify your identity and your industry, to brand yourself online. Few of us go past the top page results, especially when we get an immediate link to everything we want to know about whatever it is we’re searching for. In this case, it’s you.

 

But what about my photo?

 Professionalism. We’ve covered that. What’s the first step to personally deciding if someone is professional or not? When you meet someone in person, first impressions are eternal. In today’s digital age, your first impression has already been made before you’ve ever met your clients, or potential employer. They’re using the information that’s available to them online to decide their opinions about you before you even walk through the door. Shouldn’t they get the right opinion?

The first thing they’re going to see is a photo of you. If not, then they’ll probably stray far away. It’s the first way to scope-out false profiles, making it the first impression, even amidst a sheet of information on a simple Google search. You’ve got to make it count, or it’s going to send the wrong message.

 

What could it be saying?

Ever look at a photo of someone and just think “They look creepy?” If you haven’t, you’re lying to yourself. Most of us make quick judgments based on appearances; it’s a part of the human brain. It’s problem-solving, and deciding how much trust to put into someone. When you’re dealing with business, trust is everything; it’s absolutely paramount. An improper photo of yourself could be saying a thousand different things, and you’re none the wiser.

 

How do I go about fixing it?

 If I’ve said it before, I’ve said it a hundred times: hire a professional. Photographers aren’t just AV club geeks with expensive Nikon cameras; they’ve got an eye for what’s attractive on film. Beyond the quality of the still, they have tips, tricks and tactics to give you the desired impression that you’re looking to give to potential business partners and colleagues. Look out world; here you come.