1: It is not about the equipment
At some point, you will need to have professional images taken. They are worth paying good money for these images. However, if you like to mix up your profile images use your smartphone. Those aren’t razor phones anymore. Most smart phones have a quality camera that can take your picture. They will be good quality, and able to be uploaded quickly to your social channel.
2: Know your lighting
Lighting is everything with a photograph. It can make your image look dramatic or evoke specific emotions. With most profile pics you want an image that lights up your face well. Shadows can be fun to play with, but it is always good to have a staple profile picture to lean on. You want the image to be clean and not cluttered, but have texture and life to it. If it looks like a passport photo, try again.
3: Take a batch
Don’t expect to be one and done. Take a bunch. People who are not always in the front of camera won’t take a good first picture. The more comfortable you can get the better. Try different faces. Relax your face. Try being expressive. Just don’t do any adaptation of the “duck face”. Yes, you will probably feel dumb, but just commit to it. It is your first impression after all.
4: Edit those pictures
As much as you think your image looks good, a few edits won’t hurt. You can do edits right inside most camera apps, but there is also some great free apps to edit your images. Adjust the exposure, contrast and color balance are good places to start.
5: Post the right picture
Know the best place to put your picture. You might not present the same image on LinkedIn that you would on Facebook. Know the impression you want to present and make sure you are doing it on the right platform. Simple right?!