The classic 1934 song was never more true than it is today for social media. As a résumé writer, I help many people develop content for their LinkedIn profiles and Facebook pages, and I always recommend that people get a professional “headshot” to show who they are.
I understand the concern some may have about identity theft. But if you choose to use social media to market yourself or your business (and you should—see some stats below), you are shortchanging yourself by not including a photo to show the world who they would be hiring. Most professional photographers don’t charge huge amounts for this—I paid $175 for a sitting and a disc with my photo on it—and it adds to the “story” you create about who you are and what you have to offer your prospects. If you can’t afford it, then spiff up and find a friend who will take your picture against a neutral, uncluttered background.
And using bad photos can hurt you almost as much as not using one at all. Don’t use your latest Facebook selfie of you with a drink in your hand—believe it or not, I have seen this done, and you just aren’t going to get that job interview.
Think that prospective employers don’t pay attention to checking you out on social media? Not true. Based on the July 2015 “Jobvite” survey of recruiters, only 4% of recruiters are not using social media in recruiting efforts; of that 96%, 87% use LinkedIn and 55% use Facebook. According to LinkedIn, folks with a profile photo get 14 times more views than do those without.
So, “here’s lookin’ at you, kid”!
© 2016 Fran Fahey