Your profile picture will be the first thing that people see so it’s important to get it right. If not you will struggle to make new friends in London. Your photo is a representation of you and anyone viewing it will form an immediate impression of what kind of person you are. They might even decide whether or not they want to contact you based purely on your avatar. No pressure, right?!
Most of us are anonymous online and our profile pictures are the only things that break that anonymity. Choosing the right picture becomes easier once you’ve decided what you want from your profile image. Do you want to use it to catch people’s attention? Perhaps you simply want it to show people what you look like. What parts of your personality do you want to display?
Whether you’re outgoing, fun, intelligent and/or shy, all these things can be communicated using your profile picture. If you’re not sure, pause the next time you view someone’s avatar and you’ll realise exactly how many judgements and conclusions you’re drawing about that person just from seeing their profile image.
You HAVE to smile. This is the number one tip. Smiling people get more messages. Its that simple!
Phone and web cameras are great, but they usually produce poor photos. If you want to produce good quality pictures, ditch the grainy images in favour of a proper digital camera. Even if you don’t have one, the chances are that you know someone who does and won’t mind you taking a few snaps.
Lighting is just as important as picture quality. While silhouettes provide a mysterious allure, if you want people to know what you look like, you’ll need to get the lighting right. Wherever you’re taking the picture, make sure you’re facing the light source. If the light is behind you, then you’ll be dwarfed by an eclipse effect. It’s also important to make sure your surroundings are light enough otherwise you’ll have the opposite problem. Flash is a good way to ensure the picture is well-lit and it also stops photos from blurring. However, watch out for artificial lights; some can give photos an odd colouring.
4) Be consistent
You want people to get to know who you are. If you’re modelling a new look every couple of days or so, it’s going to be hard for people to pin a name to a face. Try and find a picture you like and stick with it for a while. Unless you drastically change something about your appearance, it will give people a much better idea of who you are and help them feel like they know you.
5) Get creative!
If you want to add a little creative flair to your profile pictures, there are a number of websites that will help you produce eye-catching avatars with a difference.
Photoshop – Now in its 20th year, Photoshop allows users to edit images, altering the picture and adding effects. But don’t go too far or you will turn people away from your profile.
Photofunia (http://photofunia.com) – Ever wanted to see your picture appear on a billboard, as a book illustration or in the next Robert Pattinson movie? Photofunia creates novelty photos that will make people look twice and will certainly get their attention.
Finding a profile picture that you’re happy with is important but it can also be a lot of fun. Remember there’s no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way to present yourself so just enjoy it!
If you are not getting messages and you think you should be then try another photo and see if you get more messages.
7) Don’t use a group shot
The whole point of your profile photo is its your profile photo! So don’t have a big group of people with you or everyone will be wondering which person they are speaking with!
8) Don’t turn back time
We don’t advise putting a photo of yourself that is more than 2 years old. If someone does eventually meet you and you look massively different they are likely to be put off. Also if you use your real age and that doesn’t match to your photo they may think your profile is fake.
9) Don’t appear too far away or too close up
Choose a photo of yourself that is a nice distance away from the camera. Don’t choose a photo where are you are far away from the camera. Likewise do not use a photo that is zoomed in really close as that will make you look odd.
10) Look into the camera
We recommend looking into the camera lens. That way you are looking back at the individual who is looking at you therefore you are more likely to make a connection with them.