Do Your Photos Lie? Why They Should Always Tell the Truth Raising the Barr Weekly Memo: Issue 215

What does your business have in common with online dating? As it turns out, quite a lot. In both situations, the images you post can make all the difference between a great connection or a really sour interaction.

Posting misleading photos on dating websites—like that glamour shot from 1997 that shows you 20 years younger and 20 pounds lighter—will only hurt you when the actual date rolls around. And just the same, posting outdated images of yourself on your business website can irreversibly taint your clients’ perception of you.

So, why do so many people do it? As I scroll through business websites, I’m always shocked to see headshots that date back to the 90s, or antiquated graphics that look like they ushered in Y2K. Unfortunately, few entrepreneurs seem to understand the power of online images to build trust, credibility, and good rapport with their prospects.

The images on your website show people who you are. If a client walks into a room to meet you for the first time, but can’t recognize you right away, then your website images have failed miserably. But it’s not just about your headshot; it’s about all the images on your site. From photos of you and your team, to graphics that illustrate your business ideas and diagrams that explain your services, the visual aspects of your website should never be overlooked.

If you think it might be time to overhaul the imagery on your site, take a look at some of my tips to see where you stand:

  1. Update photos every 2 or 3 years. As a general rule, you shouldn’t have the same photo on your website in 2017 that was there in 2014. Make it a point to regularly update your headshots and those of your team every 2 to 3 years.
  2. Update photos whenever your look changes. Get a dramatic new haircut? Lose 50 pounds? Gain 50 pounds? Whenever your look changes substantially, it’s time for a new photo on your website. Remember, clients should always be able to recognize you immediately from your photos online.
  3. Use powerful graphics. Are your graphics up-to-date? Work with a professional graphic designer to make sure your infographics, diagrams, charts, and process visuals are powerful additions to your website.
  4. Don’t use images just for the sake of it. They say a picture is worth a thousand words…but do the words even make sense? Do your images help get your message across—or do they make it more difficult for visitors to wade through the information on your site? Make sure you’re only using powerful graphics that help your case, rather than hurt it.

It can be easy to overlook the images on your site, but they have a huge impact on your clients and prospects. This year, commit to a regular schedule of updated images—so your clients are never caught off guard when they finally meet you.

Don’t overlook the images on your site! Regularly update your headshots and make sure your graphics are powerful, up-to-date, and professional.

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