What was your best profile picture

16 tips for profile pictures on the business networks LinkedIn and Xing

The other day, on the beach. Really great photos, cool with sunglasses. Afterwards the roll was stolen from the seagull, what we laughed about.

Oh, that was good before too, a colleague took a nice group photo when we were presenting our project, the section of me was okay, it was also a great moment.

Or my picture here. I, happily at the junkyard in France, remove parts for my old Renault R4.

Stop. Nobody wants to be the first to see that in a business network.

Tips about the profile picture in LinkedIn and Xing

Why are the profile pictures important?

Profile pictures, i.e. portraits of the face, are more important today than ever. It starts on smartphone apps such as Whatsapp but also in business address books or emails in Outlook: we often see our virtual counterpart as a photo. An image in the Xing and LinkedIn business networks should be chosen very deliberately. Only then are you a welcome guest on your contact's screen. You are worth looking good and your contact may like to see a good picture because it affects them again and again.

A profile picture is an invitation to contact

Those who present themselves professionally have goals and are therefore sought, found or offered. The first contact today is actually always a picture. This builds trust. Even data thieves and spammers therefore always use stolen and often very good identities and their photos - they inspire trust. The effect of a good portrait photo as a profile picture cannot be underestimated. Any bet, you too have already looked closely at the picture to know: what kind of person is that.

We are eye animals. A picture is worth a thousand words. I just have to get an impression, get a picture of the situation - look in the eyes.

Tips as a checklist for profile pictures

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  1. Use a photo. If you play hide and seek on business networks and don't show yourself, you can actually delete your account right away. Networks live from networking, for everything else private address books are the better choice.
  2. Keep your picture up to date. Nobody likes to be surprised when they see you in reality. New glasses, new hairstyle, change in weight -> new profile picture due. Your gaze is directed towards your future - that is why the past is not relevant in the picture.
  3. Care and perfection don't hurt. We also tidy up our homes and dress up when important visitors arrive. Your profile and your photo are an invitation to you.
  4. Professionals work with professionals. That is why professional pictures are compulsory and not nice-to-have. Your first or your daily appearance, your picture is your very own shop window. Your investment in your visibility. Therefore: professional photos, preferably from an expert in business photos, never vacation photos or excerpts from snapshots.
  5. Facial expressions are everything. Who laughs a lot is allowed to laugh. If you want to appear calmer or more assertive: smile subtly. Can you do it alone? Probably not without good guidance. So, off to the specialist who gives you the right picture for your goals.
  6. No wanted passport photo shot in five minutes. Look straight into the camera, be at eye level, the expression clear and friendly. So that you will be found likeable. A photo that you make an effort for shows your contact that you appreciate them.
  7. Details make the difference. When looking at your profile picture and application photo, you can easily look at your texts and information. That can be supported by the light. Then it looks friendlier. So the fine design depends a little on the purpose of the pictures. Ask the photographer how he supports this. Therefore, two pictures with a slightly different posture and adapted light are usually better if you need an application photo and a profile picture.
  8. Everything that distracts from the face disturbs your recognizability. Reveal as much about yourself as makes sense. Do you always have a hat on - it has to be on the picture. Body jewelry and other jewelry as subtle as possible.
  9. Less is more. Plain colors, backgrounds, the correct position of the camera - a professional can do it inside out. The brightest point in the picture should be your face. That is why a slightly softened contrast in clothing is often a good thing, blue is better than black, a muted white is better than snow-white with a black jacket. The profile picture can often be a little more casual. But it is important: your type must always be recognizable. And your photographer should therefore have a checklist ready for you to prepare. Try out which clothes / outfits fit best in the pictures.
  10. Show your face. Your body, your hands, none of these are important to looking into your eyes. One should get stuck there. Therefore: narrow section, the pictures are tiny. And, I repeat myself, always at eye level, never from above or with a dog's eye from below, little turned, no teasing poses. It is best to look as if you were holding out your hand in greeting and looking the other person in the face for a moment in a friendly manner. Imagine a friendly, loving person instead of the camera.
  11. Sliced ​​or in one piece? Ask the photographer for reduced, sharpened and appropriately cut images. If he doesn't deliver that, do it properly yourself. Every appropriately scaled-down photo needs to be sharpened a little. Only then is the image sharp and displayed as JPG in the browser in the best possible way, otherwise it will be blurry and blurry. I recommend the freeware FastStone ImageViewer as a Windows program for such tasks. Make your picture suitable for the websites and send it before uploading.
  12. The right image size (As of 01/2020) for a
    LinkedIn profile picture is: 400 × 400 to 768 × 4320 pixels. I recommend using 800 × 800 pixels here.
    Xing profile photo: 1024 × 1024 pixels
  13. Image sizes of other portals as well can be found in the social media image size cheat sheet shown
  14. Clarify the usage rights of your images. It happens again and again that an application photo may not be used as a profile picture. Make sure to clarify this point, many photographers see usage rights as a rich source of income, even for pictures of private individuals.
  15. Headshots work and can be the best choice because they do without body language. Here you can find information about body language and the effects of crossed arms.
  16. For visibility: break all the rules if it helps you. A good standard is a good thing because it works well. But when you say goodbye on vacation, you have a story to tell and a picture fits -> put on your sunglasses and have fun. I firmly believe that people don't laugh enough in photos on social networks. For a moment it can be funny. But don't make yourself a fool.