A social media presence does mean that your ‘avatar’ needs to be visible on all your platforms. Although the word originates from Hinduism, the meaning when used for the computer world is “an icon or figure representing a particular person in computer games, Internet forums, etc.” Simply, an ‘avatar’ is your profile picture that is featured on blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and any other social media site you may frequent.
It’s Just a Picture…..
~ Do not use a glamour shot, or pose in sexy/seductive ways (unless you are a model or in other industries that this is required), but to be taken seriously, you need to have a serious profile picture.
~ Do not have a very outdated photo, if your headshots are over 5 years old it is most definitely time for an update, having a true representation of yourself is important.
~ Do not use a cartoon character or strange editing, it makes the photo look unnatural and unprofessional.
Profile Picture DO
~ Do dress professionally for your photo, although you may prefer a more casual day to day look; when it comes to business, looking professional makes a much better impression.
~ Do smile and look approachable, people are less likely to be drawn to you if you are scowling or angry in your profile picture. A smile goes a long way.
~ Do use a photo that features more of your upper body, traditionally known as a ‘headshot’. Due to the size of most profile pictures, a full body shot will not be able to show your face clearly.
~ Do try and express your personality and brand, while at the same time keeping in mind that this photo will be judged by others. You can always ask good friends and family on some feedback on which photos to use.