It’s the Little Things: Headshots

Guide

Branding and marketing are often considered a large part of a business’ success (or failure) in the marketplace. But the beauty is in the details. So I’d like to shine some light on the little things that make up that big picture. This week is a component that is often overlooked by small businesses and sole proprietors: the importance of a good headshot. Here’s some tips on what type of headshot you need, and how to use it.

  1. Get a professional photo taken. You’re smartphone selfie is not gonna cut it. Neither is a photo from cousin Joe’s wedding. You need a photo that reflects you and reflects your business. A photo that shows your professionalism, your creativity, your quirkiness, whatever you need to come through to the person looking at that photo. How do you dress for your business? Wear suits everyday? Make sure your photo reflects that. Do you own a shop and wear a polo shirt with your logo on it every day? Then that might be the right attire for your shoot. Just make sure your photo fits within the visual identity of your business. And, ladies, get your hair and makeup done for the shoot. It makes a huge difference.
  1. Use the same headshot everywhere. Use the same photo on your website, your business card, LinkedIn, email accounts that allow profile photos, even your personal Facebook page. Consistency is key. Customers, potential prospects, people who are just getting to know you or haven’t met you before will know for sure they are looking up the right person.
  1. Update your headshot. Haven’t had a new headshot in 20 years? You’re not fooling anyone, and you are in fact confusing people. Make sure your headshot reflects how you look now. That doesn’t mean you should get a new photo taken every time you get a haircut, but reevaluate your headshots every five years or so. If I’m meeting you for coffee for the first time, seeing a current headshot on your website or social media profile will help me to identify you. Seeing an old headshot will make me think you’re trying to be something you’re not.
  1. Staff/employees headshots should be consistent across the board. Do you have an employee or staff highlighted on your website or promotional materials? Make sure everyone’s photos look like they were taken by the same photographer, with similar or identical backgrounds! Do one shoot with one photographer. Make it clear to your staff what they should wear for the shoot, and make sure they are using their photos across their multiple platforms as well.

When we organized our headshots for Katy Dwyer Design, we started out by working with a professional photographer (thank you, Surprise Photography!). We asked our photographer ahead of time what she recommended we wear. We discussed our shoot location internally and with our photographer. And on the day of the shoot, we brought our ideas to the table, as did our photographer. Listen to your professional! Our photographer had some ideas we never thought of, and as a result, we had an amazing selection of photos to choose from in the end, and headshots that reflect our brand.

2019 Update! With a new team in place, we updated our headshots, and went through the same process! Check out this fun video of the KDD team getting our shoot done!