Does Your LinkedIn Profile Photo Suck?



It's that time of year again, where our team polls the masses. Of the many recent polls we've done, LinkedIn was deemed most important because we find it is the most misunderstood social network. Findings from our various large scale polls will be posted over the next several months but first and foremost we want to talk about LinkedIn profile pictures.


We use LinkedIn ... a lot. To put it in perspective, in 2019 our screen time on LinkedIn surpassed Facebook for the first time since Zuckerberg dropped the "the" and came to Canada. That's a big stat!


In spending all of our time on LinkedIn, we've found that the profile photo is completely misunderstood. This likely has to do with additional findings that many people can't figure out the difference between Facebook and LinkedIn, but regardless, it is our duty to provide this guide to The Perfect LinkedIn profile photo.


The Perfect LinkedIn Profile Photo


Size Matters



First and foremost, one must understand that in the vast majority of cases your photo will be seen in a tiny circle roughly 150 pi x 150 pi. That's tiny! Secondarily, people will see your profile picture large and in-charge at 800 pi x 800 pi. That in mind, you need to accommodate both sizes.


To do this you MUST upload a headshot; anything else will just be a big blurry mess at the smaller size. Ensure you get as much face in the shot as possible. You don't need the top of your head, shoulders, or much room for the neckline. Focus on the face because we all have distinct faces and it's easier to pick out from afar than you in a full-body suit pic.


We Have a 'Type'




This should go without saying but don't put up profile photos that are low quality and look pixelated. No blur, no date in the corner from an old DLSR, no blown-up photos. Quality matters and so too does clarity. The last tip would be to secure even lighting. You don't need a professional cameraman to take your photo but you cannot have overblown, or shadowy pics.




This should go without saying but don't put up profile photos that are low quality and look pixelated. No blur, no date in the corner from an old DLSR, no blown-up photos. Quality matters and so too does clarity. The last tip would be to secure even lighting. You don't need a professional cameraman to take your photo but you cannot have overblown, or shadowy pics.

Approachable Photos

You want to look approachable as you can. I, myself don't have a great professional smile so I smile small. That's as good as it gets for me. Many of you can smile big and not look like Nick Cage from Face/Off so go with that. You want people to feel like they can talk to you and more-so ... like they want to.

Updates

Just as your computer and phone need updates, so to do your pictures. If you're 50, don't use a photo from your 21st birthday. Show who you are now! You want to look as you do on a daily basis. So, if you wear glasses now, your photo should feature you in glasses. If you have grey hair now, you don't want a photo up with long flowing blonde locks. Not following this rule is called false advertising (of yourself).

Attire-ly Important

It is critical that you look like you in the photo, including attire. If you never wear a suit and tie then don't wear a suit and tie in your picture. Probably best to stay away from basketball jerseys but dress as you do for your office, for your job ... your appropriate professional attire. Your clothes speak to who you are so if you can see clothes in your photo make sure you are featuring attire that you would normally wear.

Loose Ends

Alright, those are the detailed points. Here are some lightning round points:

  • It doesn't matter how 'on point' your selfie game is ... NO SELFIES.

  • No filters. This should be a life rule.

  • No group pictures. Just you, always.

  • Keep your background as plain and opposite your skin tone as possible.

  • No hobbies, no interests ... just stick with your face ... without the scuba mask on.

  • Don't squeeze your proportions.

  • DO NOT put a graphic, flyer, or logo instead of a pic of you.

  • No pics that aren't squares.

  • No sexy pics.


So there you have it, the guide to the perfect LinkedIn Profile Photo. Do you have additional tips? Leave them in the comments and if you need help with branding, LinkedIn marketing, or any other digital endeavour, let's talk!

I leave you with some really bad LinkedIn profile pics. Enjoy!