Profile photo: Should I stay or should I go?

Back in October 2016, I selected a profile image to represent myself across social media channels based on criteria presented in the #LBiLearn Social Media Technology 110 course. This is the image.

Ursula Marinelli

Now that I’m about to complete the fourth and final course, does this image still work for me? According to Nick Lewis, you should “choose an image that reflects the brand values that you want to convey.” My brand is a 50-something woman who knows that my second half of life can be fuller and richer than the first. In my photo, my grey hair shows. I’m looking at you, ready to engage in conversation. I’m smiling, open and friendly. Check.

In the shadows
Lewis suggests that you use the same image across all professional social media channels and make sure it works as a thumbnail. Check and check, except for Facebook. He does say it’s OK to do something different on your personal channels. Although, I have asked my Facebook friends to help me with my class assignments from time to time, my Facebook page started out personal, so I take more liberties with the images. This is my current Facebook profile pic, because I’m studying Carl Jung’s shadow theory.

Shadow motorcycle

“Keep your image up-to-date,” says Lewis. My profile photo is only a year old. I’m letting my hair grow longer but it’s still in that awkward stage, so I won’t take a new photo until I’m satisfied with the length or decide to cut it short again.

So the image still works but what about the background? “The simplest option is go for a plain, neutral backdrop that does not distract from the main image of yourself,” says Lewis, “and which can be edited out easily in the event your photo will ever be used as a byline in a webpage or print article. Check.

The image stays.

Source: (Lewis, Nick. “Why your social media profile picture/avatar is so important: 7 things to consider,” nick lewis communications. 27 August 2014. http://nicklewiscommunications.com/social-media-profile-picture-avatar-important-7-things-consider/, Accessed 28 April 2017.)

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