Portrait photography - why a good professional photographer is worth his weight in gold.
When a professional photographer takes a photo of you, he sets up the lighting appropriately, positions your head correctly, chooses the best angle, captures the right expression to create a flattering but true portrait. A pro photographer can provide you with photos which will present you in the best light.
In this article Victoria Asinovsky, a professional portrait photographer and the owner of Candy Fox studio in Katy, explains the importance of a professional headshot and gives advice on how to use business portraits to have a positive effect on your career.
Why is it so important to have a professional photo?
If you manage or own a business, then your face represents your brand and is associated with your company. People will form opinions about your business by looking at your image. This is an irrational bias most people have. When you think of such companies as Facebook, Microsoft, and Apple one of the first images that come to your mind is the face of the CEO.
People expect those who they work with to look competent and a good headshot is just one way of maintaining a professional image. A quality headshot makes you more recognizable and distinguishes you from your competitors.
A photo made at home or an outdated photograph may project the idea that you do not care about your success or make you look sloppy and unprofessional. Although these traits may not apply to you, this is how potential clients or business partners who are going to view your business profile may perceive you. The wrong image could say that you do not take your position seriously or that you do not care about communicating your professionalism. Selfies or pictures cut out from another photo look especially cheap and lower your chances to sell your services and your company to potential clients.
A great headshot, on the other hand, gives you a professional appearance, can reflect your character and make a good impression. It can present you as decisive and confident, and make your business appear as reliable and competitive.
Your profile picture is the first thing that draws attention on any social media, for example at your LinkedIn page. One research shows that just having a picture increases the likelihood that other users will view your profile by 14 time! It is a chance to make afirst good impression on recruiters for candidates. Make certain that your LinkedIn profile picture is up-to-date and reflects how you look today.
There is a group of individuals behind every logo who help establish a long-term business relationship with clients. And it is crucial for these clients to know with whom they are doing business because they do not deal with companies, they deal with the real people. That is why it is so important for businesses to use corporate photos to build a connection with their customers.
Because a photograph can provide a lot of invaluable information to potential clients or employers, you should convey warm, approachable, and professional vibes in the picture.
Who needs a professional photograph?
Professionals of all levels of expertise, from entry to C-levels, and even mothers on Etsy can benefit from a quality portrait. In Candy Fox studio, Victoria photographed bankers, realtors, programmers, lawyers and many other specialists.
Whether you are a business trainer, real estate agent, consultant, or an author, a professional photo allows you to build a trustworthy connection with potential clients and helps you make people take you and your skills more seriously. A quality picture will make a job candidate stand out as a professional and will increase the likelihood of being noticed by a potential employer.
An executive headshot helps personalize a company and is a great tool for both marketing and social networking in industries where face-to-face communication is essential.
Professionally taken photos that are clear, natural-looking with balanced lighting are the best way to present a company's representatives.
How can a professional headshot increase sales rates of a mother who runs a shop on Etsy? Customers tend to buy goods and services from a familiar brand or from someone they know. To build long-lasting relationships based on trust, a mother can allow the visitors to see what she looks like and post a good portrait showing her friendly and outgoing personality.
Where to use an executive headshot
Business portraits are used to promote businesses and entrepreneurs and can be seen everywhere now, on public transport, on billboards, in journals and online magazines.
Google displays people’s photos beside their search rankings. A study was made that proved an image in the search results increases the volume of click-throughs by 150%.
So, how to take advantage of your branding and where to attach your professional headshot?
On Social Media
Many companies and entrepreneurs use social and business networking websites to build an initial connection with other businesses or potential clients.
They use executive headshots that have a single, engaging style to demonstrate unity across all their social media pages and make a memorable impression on their audience. To build brand identity corporate headshots that present the faces of an organization can be used on such websites as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. This is one of the ways to create recognition and project the brand image to the world.
On a business card
When you return home from a networking event with a few dozens of cards you are more likely to remember people who have photos on their business cards. Those with a professional picture not only stand out from the others but also make you recall them. People remember faces and images better than names, so it is easier to remember someone when you can put a face to a name.
Realtors commonly add professional photographs on their business cards. However, salespeople, consultants, psychotherapists, coaches can also benefit from it.
Chances are you have seen at least one real estate advertisement in your life, and you have most probably noticed that the majority of them have the face of the agent. The purpose of an agent’s headshot on the ad is to make a good first impression because it is the agent with whom clients want to deal.
On your “about us” page
Not a single textual description or a logo on a company website can accurately illustrate “who” are the people behind the company. To make your business look more human and to give it a personal touch you can show your clients who they are doing business with and place your professional portrait and corporate headshots of your employees and/or colleagues on your “about us” page.
Attached to your resume
You should appear professional, yet approachable on your headshot to increase the chances of being invited to the interview.
Each email you send can be accompanied by a thumbnail of your headshot to offer a personal dimension into your daily business interaction.
Where else can you use your headshot? On your blog, in articles, press releases, trade show banners, billboards, book covers / CD covers, print magazines/online magazines.
How to prepare for the photo session?
Preparation can prevent problems with choosing clothes - an element that can convey a lot of information. For example, a vice president of marketing can be photographed in a business suit to show that he is part of the business world, but the head of research at a pharmaceutical company will look expert captured in a white coat. Meanwhile, a young executive director of a software company can wear jeans and a sweater to show that his company follows trends.
If there is no stylist on set, come well-groomed and with a few sets of clothes if necessary.
To get more info on the preparation, please follow the link.