Are you happy with the photograph of yourself that you use within social media platforms? They are sometimes called profile pictures, avatar images or headshots.

Here are some suggestions:

* Get a professional photographer to take a fresh set of photographs. Sometimes, they offer a special rate if several people can arrive at the same time at their studio.

* Dress appropriately. For example, men could wear a shirt with a collar and a smart jacket. Ties are no longer required.

* Ensure that there is proper lighting (which is one of the reasons for using a professional photographer).

* Do not wear a hat (a member of staff at one of my clients was wearing a wide-brimmed sombrero within his LinkedIn profile; when I asked him why, he said that it was to put off the recruitment consultants; this strategy must have worked, as years later, he is still working for the same company).

* Look directly at the camera. You will create a better emotional response from the viewer if you do this.

* Smile. (You can do it, really you can).

* Look rich and successful.

* Think carefully about the background.

* The photograph should be in colour and you will need it in different file formats and resolutions, for print and the web.

* Use the same headshot everywhere.

* Upload your photograph to Gravatar and it will appear all over the place.

Nigel Temple

Nigel Temple

Nigel Temple BA (Hons) MCIM is a marketing consultant, speaker and trainer. He helps enterprises to find more customers and to communicate with them more effectively. Email: | Call: +44 (0)1628 773128