Social Media

The importance of a good profile picture on social media

They say a picture paints a thousand words and this is particularly true in the field of social media.

In a time when it seems everyone has some kind of presence on social media, a professional looking profile picture can help you and your business stand out from the crowd. Did you know, for example, that on Linked In a person can increase their views by 11 times by adding a picture to their profile!

Your profile picture is the first picture people will come across on social media, and as the saying goes, first impressions do count. If a person gets a negative impression from your profile picture it may cause a difficult initial interaction!

What is your personal brand?

Your profile picture is a reflection of your you, every picture you share on a a business related social media network is a representation of your brand. A goofy looking selfie is not going to help a Criminal Lawyer gain clients as people will expect to see someone serious and respectful. What message do you want to give. Cheeky or more respectful? Cheery or serious? Can you reflect your brand colours in your photograph? These are all things to think carefully about before uploading your profile picture.

Alison Edgar the Entrepreneurs Godmother, is a great example of how you can reflect your brand colours in a profile picture. Alison’s branding always includes pink and this is reflected in all of her profile pictures.


I recommend using similar profile pictures across social networks, if people have seen your face on one account they are more likely to recognise it on another, this helps to build up a connection and will encourage people to follow you on more than one social network. Each platform, does however, have a slightly difference audience and it is important to match the picture to the platform. It may, on some occasions, be suitable to post a swimsuit photo on FB but I would highly recommend NOT posting one on LinkedIn!

Choose your photographer wisely:

Although a professional looking profile shot is preferable to a badly captured shot on a substandard phone, there is a fine line between a photo portraying you as arrogant and distant rather than approachable and professional. “Your profile picture is a great opportunity to make a lasting first impression on your social media and web audience. Your profile photo is an essential tool that can set the tone for an overall look of your brand. Having a Professional Photographer who understands lighting and body language can mean more clicks, post engagements and therefore more business.” Leanne Pushon, professional photographer at Little Bird photography

Picture size and quality:

  • Facebook profile pictures are square and display at 160×160 pixels on your Page. The photo you upload must be at least 180×180 pixels.
  • The ideal LinkedIn profile picture size is 400 x 400 pixels. However, you are able to upload a larger picture as long as it’s square, no larger in file size than 8MB in file size, and does not exceed 20,000 pixels in height or width.
  • The recommended size picture for Twitter is 400 x 400 pixels.
  • Your Instagram profile picture will display as110 x 110 pixels in the mobile app. However, your profile picture will appear slightly larger on a web browser so it is suggested you upload an image that is 180 x 180 pixels to maintain a high quality image in both settings.

I hope you have found this post helpful, and thank you to Leanne Pushon for capturing my profile picture so well (this post is not sponsored by the way!).

Some interesting reading on the importance of a good profile picture:

What does your profile picture say about you?

What people really think when they see your profile picture

NEXT MONTH…. ‘What makes a great business profile picture’

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