The Importance Of A Good Corporate Headshot
Updated: Feb 2
Adam JacobsForbes Councils Member
Forbes Business Council Council Post
In 2012, the Cognition And Emotion Journal published an interesting study on facial features. The research showed that you make your decision to trust someone within 100 milliseconds of seeing their face.
Talk about the importance of making a solid first impression, right? A less than ideal first glance spells out certain doom for your business. So what if you could get that first impression out of the way before your client walks through the door?
As the managing director of Bubblegum Casting securing children to work in television, film and modeling roles, I know a thing or two about the importance of headshots. And in the corporate world, there's no better way to gain a potential client's trust and boost your reputation than by taking professional headshots.
In this article, I'll explore the reasons why corporate headshot photography should be your next business move. Let's jump right in!
Corporate headshots can build trust among clients.
Every successful business professional knows that the customers ought to come first. Always. Building a healthy, growing client base is difficult but far from impossible.
Smiling pictures are an easy way to make clients comfortable with your business in seconds. When someone browses your website and sees a cheerful employee, it can create a positive connection in their mind. This same empathy is directly related to the first impression idea that I touched on earlier.
In her article about first impressions, Stephanie Burns emphasizes that you don't get a lot of time to prove yourself. With the new age of social media, people are finding products online now more than ever. This means that your first impression is no longer when the client steps through the door. If they've been on your social media or website, it happens well before you meet face to face.
Clean headshots show your clients who they're supporting when they choose you over the competition. It puts a smiling face to the company name.
I understand firsthand the kind of impression that a quality headshot makes. At my company, we even pay for professional headshots when we represent someone, showing additional attention to detail.
Corporate headshots can reinforce values.
If a client is attaching your face to the company's name, the picture they look at should show your core values. For example, employee selfies on your About Us page come across as unprofessional. Another rookie mistake is cropping a family photo only to feature the employee. They might look beautiful, but the business can look cheap.
You could have the most clean-cut, polished website, but it won't matter. Clients now associate your business with a selfie of Amanda and Bobby together at Taco Bell. While these kinds of "casual" photos are relatable, you don't want to confuse the client.
Yes, it's important to highlight the human side of your company. But you can do that and maintain an aura of professionalism. Casual corporate headshots are acceptable and may even be the better option, depending on your line of work.
Clients want passion and expertise to radiate off the screen as they explore your website. None of those things jumps out when they see a picture of you and half of Aunt Carol's arm at Thanksgiving in 2007.
In her article, Jessica Wong, the founder of a marketing agency, touched on how important photographs are and went so far as to include them in the top three ways to create a successful website. Take it from me and others: Go the extra mile, and take your headshots in a real business photography studio.
Corporate headshots should reflect well on you.
As a businessperson, you might say that your simplest job description is to sell a product or service. After all, isn't that what pays the bills? My years of experience in the marketing industry have taught me otherwise. At the end of the day, what you're actually doing is selling yourself to the client.
Let's say you've found the perfect new apartment that meets your needs and you can't wait to sign the lease. However, when you go in to sign, the leasing agent is late and filthy drunk. Would you even have time to reconsider signing the lease before scrambling for your car keys to get out of there? Probably not. In that scenario, the boss was a very poor representation of an otherwise ideal company.
In the same way, having poor headshots (or none at all) can seem quite lazy. Spending a little extra money to get things done right can benefit every single aspect of your company. When you truly care, clients notice.
Pro tip: Hang on to photos.
An added benefit of getting custom corporate headshots is that you can use them more than once. Update your professional social networks, such as LinkedIn, with photos of your staff. Stay up to date this way, and let your employees use these headshots as their profile photos.
Headshots are also handy when designing business cards or securing billboards. From social media accounts to paper flyers, the possibilities are endless.
Boost your first impression.
As a professional talent agent, headshots come across my desk daily. Only the highest quality shots have a chance at making it further.
Corporate headshots can ace first impressions and earn your client's trust. When done right, they'll boost your commitment to quality and other important values. As a leader, these photographs should demonstrate the quality that you deliver daily.