Why use a Professional Photographer for Social Media
“You only have one chance to make a good first impression.” Yes, this old cliché is increasingly more relevant in today’s high-speed digital world where the amount of time spent on social networking sites have created a first impression opportunities than ever before. It seems like we are shaking fewer hands and even a greater decline in eye contact; enter the necessary professional portrait.
Professional Photographer for Social Media
More and more people are coming to me to capture that all important professional pose. This increased demand isn’t only for the company website or for job seekers. It’s interest comes from representing that individual to the world via social media.
Social media began as college students being social online not as a professional environment. But today sites like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter are providing businesses and their brand an opportunity to connect where connections may have never existed before. It is difficult to find a brands social media account with disheveled hair or poor quality images taken with a mobile phone. I see a thought-out digital representation of the individual.
How do you capture a great professional representation of yourself?
Well, there are many factors to be aware of when capturing a great portrait or lifestyle image (Light, lens, environment, outfit, hair, skill, etc..). I want to know what people like you and me can do on our end, what we have control of, to facilitate easily a professional photographer.
In Los Angeles I’m primarily known as a event photographer, but I have also shot numerous editorial and social media campaigns as a professional photographer.
Here are some of my recommendations based on my experience for you to consider:
Pick the right photographer for you
Selecting the right photographer takes some careful consideration. If you’re not located near me, ask around for recommendations, research photographers through their portfolios, locate corporate headshots that you like, and don’t be afraid to interview a photographer you would like to hire. Feeling comfortable is key and having a person you can trust will make the difference between an OK session and a great session!
Remember: as an important rule, you’re likely to get what you pay for.
Know what you want "Define Your Brand"
Just like the other activities involved in branding, business portraits should be well-thought. Some things to think about: Has your company set a brand standard already? Bring an example of your company’s photos so that your photographer create the same look.
What tone are you trying to express with the photo? Corporate? Serious? Approachable?
Who is your primary audience? Other professionals and businesses or consumers? Or both?
Give yourself time to relax before shooting
Photographers like myself understand that not all people are not used to being in front of the camera all the time and because of this unfamiliarity they are likely to get nervous about the whole process. The longer you have to relax before beginning, the better.
A great trick is to start the session in your least favorite outfit. Since you might feel nervous and awkward, it’s best to save the best for last when you’re relaxed.
Clothes make the person
Here are some dos and don’t you should consider:
DO wear solid colors! Patterns can be loud or distracting which will take away from the most important part of the photo: your face! DON’T wear spaghetti straps or any of those crazy crisscrossed wrap/blouse things. DO choose shirts that have something of interest around the collar and neckline. DO bring at least 3 – 5 outfit options. Options, options, options. You’ll appreciate the flexibility when choosing settings, backgrounds, and makeup. Invest in Options!
Milne highly recommends taking a variety of images in different outfits and settings so that you can keep your image and your various social media presences fresh while maintaining a consistent tone and message.
FYI: Facebook supports a 2×3 crop ratio, which means they’ll display the entire image. Twitter & Gravatars, on the other hand, uses a square aspect ratio of either 73×73 pixels or 48×48 pixels. Remember that you or Twitter will crop the image to fit inside a square. Keeping these in consideration will make sure your photo is represented well thought our social media presence.
Having not only a great photographer but the right photographer for you will help your business and your energy in social media. By encompassing the techniques above, combined with a experienced photographer your needs can be accomplished efficiently for a stunning final product.
Photos; 2016 Travel & Leisure Magazine for Hartmann Luggage, 'Janie Bryant' Costume Designer "Mad Men" ©Jeff Pinette Photography