Whether you think you're particularly photogenic (or particularly good-looking) or not, a good Profile photo is a must. It's a big part of the first impression you'll make on new contacts and connections, and a reminder of who you are to the contacts and connections you have already made.
Many people remember faces before they remember names, and a poor or missing photograph is likely to reduce your opportunities to connect.
Tips for LinkedIn Profile Photos
LinkedIn is a professional network, so make sure your photo is professional-looking. You don't need to spend a lot of money on a professional photographer to have a great LinkedIn photo, but if you've already got a professional headshot, use it.
Keep distractions to a minimum – the background of the photo should be plain (no books, diplomas, windows, etc. in the background).
Dress and groom yourself the way you would when meeting clients. Avoid distractions in your clothing and jewelry.
Try to relax and smile – you want your photo to be professional, but also engaging and inviting so others will want to connect with you.
Although the photo on your individual Profile may seem like it is plenty large, when people are using LinkedIn, they will not always be looking at your Profile – instead, they will see your photo when reading your Updates, viewing comments or discussions through Groups, or when you appear in search results. The size of the photos in those areas on LinkedIn is very small.
Unlike headshots for other purposes (brochures, websites, etc.), your headshot on LinkedIn looks best – and will be most recognizable – if it is tightly cropped to show mainly your face. Full torso shots, or even head and shoulders shots make your face so small on LinkedIn that it may be difficult to make an impression - or even to recognize you. That being said, you can use the same head and shoulders shot you use on your website or elsewhere, just crop it before uploading it to LinkedIn.
Make sure the photo is of you - and just you. LinkedIn is not the network to use your pet's photo, family photos or cartoonlike avatars on your Profile. In fact, LinkedIn may remove your Profile photo if it isn't a photo of you.
Keep your photo current. Just because you like the way you looked 20 years ago better than the way you look now doesn't mean you should use a 20 year old photo. LinkedIn is an extension of your 'real world' network, and you want to make sure that people who know you in person can recognize you on LinkedIn, and people who haven't met you yet will recognize you when they do meet you after having seen your photo on LinkedIn. If you change your hairstyle or hair color, a change of Profile photo might be in order, too.
Profile photo details
- Photos can be in JPG, GIF or PNG format
- The size of the file should be 4MB maximum, but the original files can be compressed before uploading them to LinkedIn if necessary
- Pixel size of photos should be 200 x 200 minimum and 500 x 500 maximum.
- The photo should be square (or cropped to a square before uploading to LinkedIn)
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