It only takes 40 milliseconds to draw conclusions about a person based on a photo. Is the person likeable? Trustworthy? Competent? First impressions are important, so here are some tips for putting your best face forward.
Pose for Pros
We recommend hiring a professional photographer who specializes in head shots. You’ll find it’s money well spent. A professional photographer can put you at ease, help you with your posture and angles and—perhaps most importantly—provide proper lighting and retouching.
Since you’re the focus of the shot, you should try to keep the background simple. A solid color will work great. Some studies show that a simple white or gray background is perfect, but others suggest a bright color (orange!) will help your image pop. Check with your photographer to see what he or she recommends.
On a side note, if you’re known for a certain specialization, consider the value that can be added to your photo. If you sell beachfront properties, plan a beach day photo shoot. If you specialize in high-end homes, choose a lush garden backdrop.
Select Your Shot
There are a lot of reasons to be specific about your shot selection, but the best reason is the results: people respond better to photographs that include head and shoulders. So don’t get too close in, and don’t pull too far out.
A Winning Smile
As a real estate professional, you’re more than just likeable. You’re trustworthy, you are confident, and you have the power to close a deal. While you should avoid mid-laugh-level smiles, be sure to show some teeth.
Dress to Impress
You’re advertising your business; keep it professional. Choose colors that complement your skin tone; most importantly, wear something that makes you feel comfortable and attractive.
Ultimately, you want to look like yourself—like the person they’ll work with, not just the person they’ll hire. If you wear glasses, wear them in the photo. You are your brand. Make it memorable.