Photoshoot anything. Thoughts, stories and tips from Team Perfocal.

LinkedIn is the leading online professional platform worldwide. If you're a professional, having a convincing LinkedIn account is a must. Your profile can have a large influence on your career and on others' perception of you. A profile photo can help describe whether you’re trustworthy, professional or even real to those viewing your profile. So, having a professional looking headshot on LinkedIn is paramount.

Here are a few things to consider when taking a new headshot for LinkedIn.

1.The Background

Taking a LinkedIn headshot in a grey or white background is the way to go. A patterned, dark or coloured background could be distracting to viewers. Although, if a plain background is not your style, you can take a photo in a work environment like an office space. However, the office needs to be neatly organized to avoid portraying the wrong impression!

Office or street backdrops are a perfect alternative if you don't have a screen to hand! Photo taken by an excellent Perfocal photographer.

2. Photo Quality

When taking a profile photo, ensure that the image is captured in high resolution. For instance, do not use your phone to take headshots (!!) Find someone with a good-quality camera (like a professional photographer) to take them for you. This is because you want to portray professionalism.  A crisp, clear image shows that you've paid attention to the finer details.  Lastly, avoid cropping images as this results in pixelation and low-quality. Bad quality pictures could make people have doubts about your professionalism.

3. Professional Clothes

Your outfit is one of the most critical elements that need to be considered when taking a LinkedIn headshot. Depending on the field you work in, it’s usually safe to adopt a business-casual look for your headshot. If you work in a more corporate world, consider taking a picture in a suit to match how your peers present themselves. The colour of the selected attire should also contrast the background to enhance your appearance. If the attire chosen is light coloured, the environment should remain dark, and vice versa.

Suits are for a super-corporate look, whereas most industries will accept business casual! Photo taken by a talented Perfocal photographer.

4. Lighting

Lighting could easily hinder your look if the picture is taken in the dark or inadequately lit room. When taking headshots, consider taking the picture in front of a window since it provides natural light. Avoid using flash photography because it can be unflattering on the face. If you’re unable to get proper lighting, it's worth making the effort to get the picture taken in a studio. They will provide near perfect surroundings for a great headshot!

5. Hair and/or Makeup

If you'd like to wear makeup, only apply that which enhances your natural look. For instance, nude lipstick and mascara help you look awake and fresh. For headshots, try to steer clear of anything too bright or wacky! Whether straight or curled, hair should be worn down and kept simple. For men, make sure you have a fresh haircut and your hair styled for the day to look neat and tidy.

Natural lighting works wonders in headshots! Picture by fabulous Perfocal photographer

6. Strike a Pose (vogue)

For your LinkedIn headshot, pose in a way you know works for you. However, if you're unsure, keep some of this in mind when you’re in front of the camera. Stick your chin out and tilt your head downwards slightly while taking the picture to manifest a bold appearance. Hold your shoulders back to look confident.  People are looking at your photo and making a decision about you from the very first second, so slouching, not smiling or looking away isn't going to cut it for any professional platform, especially Linkedin!

Need some pose insipration? Check out Grenville's dashing headshots taken with Perfocal!

7. Overall Expression

Expressions could either be a fierce look, a laugh, soft tooth smile or a traditional smile. They matter a lot and depending on the industry you work in, your particular persona you wish to extend through the camera should be highlighted here. Remember to use your business smile, not your weekend smile when you’re out on the town.

Opt for a 'business smile'. Picture by glorious Perfocal photographer, of course. 

8. Why You’re Doing This

Whether you’re taking the picture yourself or are engaging the services of a professional photographer, most, if not all of the above elements need to be considered. When adhered to, your photo could be one of the most viewed headshots on LinkedIn, and this could get you your next job, or better relationships with potential clients and customers.

Did you know that you can hire a photographer to do headshots for you and your team? Perfocal offers a hand-picked selection of camera pros who deliver high-quality photography for fixed fees starting from just £69. Book a headshot today.

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