Thursday, April 12, 2012

ARE YOU AN EGGHEAD? -The Importance of a Social Media Profile Picture

A professional profile picture in your social media presence, whether it's Twitter, Facebook, or on your website or blog, might be more important than you think.

I have to admit that when I first started learning about social media, I was an egghead. I literally had the default photo of a white egg with a pale blue background for my Twitter profile picture. Once I saw that my posts were associated with this default image and many newbie users were doing the same, I realized I had to make a change to set myself apart.

At first I added in a snappy little piece of art for my Twitter picture.

Then I put a great shot of me camping with a bandana devouring a piece of corn on the cob on my Facebook profile.

I thought I was being trendy and interesting. But as I listened to more seminars and podcasts about social media I kept hearing the same message. Your profile picture is the first visual impression a customer, client, reader or fan will see of you. First impressions are everything. They are the difference between clicking on something you have to offer, or clicking away. You need a photo that gives the viewer an instant connection with you.

Here are a few must dos when it comes to a social media profile picture:

If you do not have a profile picture - get one now. If you use the default, your image will be nothing but a Facebook silhouette or even worse, a Twitter egg. Viewers will simply move on.

Avoid using fun, silly or party pictures. Be professional. Choose a photo that exudes confidence and shows the viewer how you want to be seen in your profession.

Take a high quality shot. Have a simple background, use a good camera on a tripod with good lighting from both sides. Wear something professional but neutral that you feel good in and emerge out of your shell leaning slightly forward with a natural smile.

My profile shot might not be exactly perfect, in fact I'm due for a new one since it is 2 years old, but it is simple and professional. Ultimately, your choice of profile picture comes down to you. Is it a casual Facebook page, or for your business page? Are you promoting a book, an event, or a piece of art? Or are you planning a family reunion? Effective profile pictures can range from you working in your garden, to a family pet, to a business logo. The Facebook timeline is set up perfectly so you can portray a photo of your latest book as the cover shot while still having a professional profile picture of you on the side. Check out my Facebook page here. You'll see that I have a more casual picture associated with my profession in the quilting industry. Whatever you decide...don’t be an egghead.

Monday, March 26, 2012

A Renewed Sense of Writing Self

As you can see from the date of my last post, poetry and writing in general have been put aside for a bit as I took a few months to start my new business! Well, I am officially a Fibre Artist, Writer, Teacher and Speaker in the quilting industry! And now that things have settled a bit and I've reviewed my long list of goals and made some priorities, my passion for writing is back on the table.

Two quilting industry writing projects that I have in queue are a children's picture book and a pattern book that I aim to get published by a quilt industry publisher.

As far as mainstream literature, I have just entered 3 poems in the CBC Canada Writes poetry contest. You can check out the contest entry rules here. It was so nice to dive back into my pile of poems and pick a few favourites to revise and send in.

Thank you so much to everyone who has followed the Write Hearted blog in the past. I'm back! Thanks for sticking with me!

Brandy Lynn :)