What makes a good LinkedIn photo?

LinkedIn Questions Blog

Tips and ideas for a great LinkedIn photo

Your LinkedIn profile photo is the first thing a potential employer or client will see when visiting your profile page.

It is your digital shopfront and it needs to look professional. Here are some tips and ideas on what to do and what not to do.

  1. Do. Dress in your usual business clothing. Don’t overdress or go out and buy a new outfit. You will look overdressed and therefore not like the real you, so we suggest that you wear your usual wardrobe. Make sure it is clean and free from any creases or stains.
  2. Do. Have a natural expression. If you are the type of person that smiles all the time then smile. If you are the type of person that rarely smiles then don’t smile in your photo because it will look unnatural. Be yourself, it will work better for you.
  3. Do. Get someone else to take your LinkedIn profile photo. Selfies are not suitable for LinkedIn, as they look amateurish and unprofessional. Ask a friend to take your headshot, and try to have a few options so you can choose which looks best.
  4. Do. Be mindful of the background. You don’t want a vivid pattern or strong colours behind you as these will distract from the image of you. Have a plain background or a business environment behind you.
  5. Do. Choose a recent photo. It’s best to take a new headshot for your profile. And you want it to relate to your current position, or the position you are going for.
  6. Don’t. Represent your hobbies in your photo, there’s no place for them here! If you’d like to talk about your football or swimming prowess, you can add that to your About section on your profile.
  7. Don’t. For heaven’s sake, please don’t add an Instagram filter. Even if you want the profile photo to look original or quirky. Adding filters using any photo software or app looks amateur and unprofessional (dare we say it, a bit tacky too!).
  8. Do. Get a profile photo that is taken straight on. Don’t have it taken looking down or up into the camera. You do not want a creative or arty headshot. This should look straightforward and business-like.
  9. Do. Make sure the profile photo is close up, as when it appears on your LinkedIn profile the image is small. We would suggest that your face takes up over 60% of the overall area.
  10. Do. Go professional if you can, and hire a LinkedIn photographer. If you can spare the cash (we have a flat fee for all our LinkedIn Services). It really is worth the expense. It is a very important part of your business brand, and your personal marketing. People relate to images before words, so you want to get it right.