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Your First Impression Online

Posted: | In: The Oyster Club

In the virtual world, a place where we seem to live more and more, I am surprised at the lack of care and attention to presenting a suitable personal/public image.

Some experts say that we form our assessment of people when first meeting them by as much as ninety-seven percent, on appearance alone. If that translates to the virtual world, and we want our followers to read on, we had better sit up and pay attention to this fact.

If it is our intention to widen our net in the virtual world, surely it would make good sense to be extra diligent with regard to the images we send out?

Personally, I do not respond to “eggs” on Twitter. I am amazed that anyone would be so lacking in “vision” to take care of this. It suggests you are technophobic, lazy or have something to hide. If you intend to use Twitter as a business tool it clear that using an egg to represent yourself is social media suicide.

Facebook is an effective place to use images to your advantage. Updating your profile photo instantly refreshes your presence and if you want to stay within the consciousness of your friends, associates and fans, it is particularly important that you do this regularly.

My client, Cornish Surrealist Jonathon Xavier Coudrille, changes his profile photo sometimes as often as daily and never less than once a week. This constant updating is entirely correct for him. As an artist, he understands that image is vital to maintaining his place in the hearts and minds of his followers. To us mere mortals, I would suggest a monthly update is all we really need. You could consider having a collection of five or six good head and shoulder images and simply keep them on rotation.

LinkedIn is the perfect place to present yourself as you wish to be seen professionally. Here, unlike Facebook where there is personal cross over, a suitably business like image needs to be employed. This doesn’t mean dressing up in a suit if you don’t usually wear one in your line of work, but it certainly does benefit from using the services of a professional photographer. A grainy snap taken as you were lolling about on a sofa just will not do. If you wish to be perceived as excellent in your industry, sharpen up.

When you attend networking events and make new connections, following initial meeting, the first thing people are likely to do is to connect with you on social media platforms. If your face doesn’t correspond with the one they saw when they were last looking at you, there is an immediate feeling of incongruency and inauthenticity which may just cheese the deal. So be up to date, be appropriate, and above all, be honest.

A great tool for making sure your lovely face gets out to relevant places is Gravatar. It is an easy to follow process and ensures that all the blogs you respond to automatically upload your avatar. As these images are very small, I would suggest you use a close up of your head and shoulders only, by using a cropping tool.

We live in the age of uncertainty. Anything we can do to reassure, garner approval and instill confidence in our prospective clients and customers should be top of our to do list. This is a visual world. Every day it becomes more so. Can you afford not to attend to this immediately?

If this blog has galvanized you into taking action by addressing your photographic needs, I would be delighted to recommend one of several photographers who have worked their magic on me. Just leave a message here.

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