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Professional Headshots: 15 Tips & Mistakes you can Avoid

Introduce Yourself With a Headshot

Face-to-face meetings are becoming obsolete. Mall-strolling consumers now shop online. The window company that once required an at-your-home quote now uses Google Earth to make an estimate for window replacement. So how do we shake hands and say, “Hi! My name is…?”

Headshots introduce us to our market potential.

Photography will promote your company’s brand like nothing else. And you need more than one image to capture the essence of who you are and what you do. But professional headshots should be your first priority.

Why You Need Headshot Photography

Headshots were (and are) always included in acting professionals’ portfolios. A casting director may toss resumes to one side but closely examine headshots, so those photos can make or break a performer’s career. Today, service providers, salespeople – anyone representing a company – use headshots to introduce themselves.

A headshot is your opportunity to make a first impression.

A headshot can sway the viewer’s perception of your ability to do a good job. Your dependability, trustworthiness… Your brand can be reflected in one photo. One study revealed a new headshot can positively influence more than 75% of potential clients. The study was based on viewers’ perceptions of:

  • Competence
  • Influence
  • Likeability

Photographic portraits and headshots differ (note the differences in the photos below). Their purpose and how they are used is not the same. A portrait photo is artistic. A headshot is a photographic presentation of you as a professional. Headshot photographs are often tightly cropped so the face fills the frame. Most headshots avoid heavily environmental elements and “loud” backgrounds.

Nothing in a headshot should distract the viewer from your face.

Most important is the photographer’s ability to capture the elements that define who you are.

Portrait (Brand) Photography
  • More artistic
  • Busy background
  • Further away from camera
  • Headshot Photography
  • More simplified
  • Clean background
  • Cropped to feature the face
  • 15 Tips To Prepare Professional Headshots

    Begin preparing for your professional headshot photo session at least 3 days in advance.

    • 1) Be sure to confirm cancellation deadlines.

      Some photographers offer a 24-hour free cancellation. Some charge a fee.

    • 2) Eat normally and healthfully.

      If pizza gives you “pizza face,” save it for next week.

    • 3) Follow normal, healthy skincare routines.

      Now is not the time to try a new face mask or cleanser.

    • 4) Get a few honest opinions.

      Your fake eyelashes or choppy contour may look gorgeous to you, but others may not agree. You know who the painfully honest people are in your life. Ask them about your appearance.

    • 5) Get plenty of rest.

      Avoid late-night partying.

    • 6) Hydrate.

      Drink plenty of water the day before and day-of and avoid eating too much salt.

    • 7) Hair & makeup.

      On the day of the session, your hair and make-up should look good but also reflect who you are on a daily basis. If you don't normally walk around with a beehive and smokey eyeshadow, don't do it the day of your photoshoot either.

      If you aren't comfortable doing your own hair or makeup get it done professionally a couple of hours before your shoot.

      If you are doing your own hair and makeup, apply your makeup slightly heavier than normal as the lighting tends to wash the face out. Blend your makeup well to avoid any streaky contour and don't wear highly reflective eyeshadows or highlights. A little goes a long way. Remember to set your hair with a strong holding hairspray.

    • 8) Plan your day.

      Don’t schedule meetings, etc. that can cause you to feel time-challenged or hurried.

    • 9) Practice posing.

      Your eyes can speak to who you are and what you can do. Shape your smile, too. Big grins and small grimaces look even larger in a photograph.

    • 10) Prepare your glasses.

      Regular glasses are fine but don’t wear eyeglasses with reflective, color-changing, or transitioning lenses. Dirty glasses show. Clean them before the shoot.

    • 11) Review photos of you that you like and bring them with you to the shoot.

      Prior photos may give your photographer ideas for ways to coach or position you.

    • 12) Pick your outfit.

      Select 2-3 comfortable outfits and try them on to ensure they look the way you want to feel. Avoid busy patterns and in-your-face bright colors. Remember that the photo is from the waist up.

    • 13) Shave and trim.

      Don’t shave right before the shoot, but trim scraggly beards and hair.

    • 14) Take 2-3 outfits to the shoot.

      The majority of reshoots are scheduled because the clothing didn’t work photographically.

    • 15) Whiten your teeth.

      One or 2 days before the shoot, whiten your teeth if you know from experience you’ll suffer no side effects.

    Professional headshots are serious business but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t relax and have fun! Finally, make sure your headshot is named YourName.webp on all landing pages and blogs. That way, when people search online for you, your headshot will appear in the results.

    Tomball Professional Headshots

    No one can guarantee a professional headshot will increase your Tomball business by X%. But there’s a lot of valid information suggesting a professional photo shoot is well worth the investment.

    According to Trend Reports, between 65-85 percent of people describe themselves as visual learners. The latest VisualGPS consumer survey found that Gen Z and Millennials are twice as likely to make a purchase based on online imagery… A study carried out by PR News found that content with good images gets 94% more views. –Forbes

    Modern Marketing & Media photography and videography services include:

    • Events
    • Experiences
    • Headshots
    • Interviews
    • Lifestyles
    • Products
    • Properties
    • Social Media Content
    • Teams
    • Time-lapses
    • …and more

    Let’s discuss your needs and configure an affordable, actionable plan that can build your brand. We even offer mobile pop-up headshot photography where we conveniently come to your office with our professional equipment and take your photos. We’re pleased to meet you! Contact Modern Marketing & Media.

    Headshot Fails

    Have a laugh and rest assured that when you book with us, your photos won’t turn out like these…

    The Bad Edit

    The Glamour Shot

    The Poorly Posed

    The High Arm Cross

    The Trying To Look Sexy

    The Poor Accessories & Patterns

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