When someone starts following you, what’s the first thing you see? Their profile picture, of course! It’s the first thing people look at when they go to your profile and it helps your audience establish who you and your brand are. Plus, it also is the photo that shows up at the top of Instagram Stories, so making sure you have an eye-catching profile picture is important to help set you apart from others. And while choosing a profile photo might seem like an easy task, there are a couple things to consider when selecting. Here are our top tips for choosing the perfect Instagram profile picture:
Choose Something Timeless
You want your followers to quickly recognize your profile picture, so you shouldn’t change it too often. When choosing the photo, avoid anything seasonal that might not make sense once a season or holiday is over. This way, your followers will become familiar with your profile photo, which will make it easier for them to find your stories and posts on their grids. And, as a bonus, you won’t have to deal with the stress of changing your photo!
Match Your Aesthetic
Your profile photo should match the vibe of your grid, so consider this when making your selection. If your grid is light and airy, your profile photo should look the same. And if your grid is dark and moody, you’ll want to consider those vibes for your profile pic as well. This way, new followers will know what to expect from the profile picture alone!
Consider the Background
There is way more to a photo than just the subject, so you’ll want to make sure you’re considering what’s in the background. Does the background also reflect your brand? If not, there are plenty of editing apps you can use to change your background to something more effective. You’ll want to make sure it isn’t too busy, so the subject still shines. This might be a solid color, a stock background, or a pattern that compliments your shot. Either way, make sure you look past the foreground!
Does your brand, personal or professional, have props of any kind? Are you a florist, a musician, or a painter? If so, don’t be afraid to include that in the shot! A glimpse of a prop in your profile photo will catch the eye of new followers before they even make it to your page, and it will increase your chances of attracting a like-minded Instagram community. Besides, you’re bound to look more natural and confident doing what you love!
Decide Between Personal or Brand
First, you need to evaluate the function of your Instagram page and decide whether your profile shot should be personal or professional. This might be the difference between a headshot versus a brand logo, so it’s important to really consider how you want to use your page, as well as which photo would best reach followers and promote your content.
Zoom and Crop
Anyone who’s used Instagram knows that getting the perfect size photo can be tricky, especially for the circular profile pic. When choosing a photo, it is critical to pick one that you are able to fit into the circle in a way that looks clean, clear, and professional. You’ll want to avoid too much background or body if you’re going with a solo shot, and you’ll want to avoid too much negative space or crowding if you’re going with a brand logo. It might be a tough balance to strike, but sizing and cropping are key, so take your time making it work.
Use a Professional Photo
If possible, try to use a professional shot. Sometimes it might be tricky to get access to a professional photographer, but it is well worth the splurge if you have the chance. Professional photos are not only more aesthetically appealing than the alternate, but they communicate to followers that you are serious about your Instagram presence and you value professionalism in your brand. And if you don’t have access to a professional photographer, consider using apps or other online resources to edit your own photos to elevate their quality.
Show Some Personality
Your profile picture is a great place to show a little bit of who you are! Don’t be afraid to showcase your personality or your brand’s personality in this shot. New followers will be looking to see what separates you from the crowd, so this is an excellent opportunity to make your mark. If it makes sense for you or your brand, make your profile a little warm, a little silly, or a little unique in some way that will attract attention and show followers who you are.
Play With Colors
If you’re looking for an opportunity to do something eye-catching, choosing a profile picture that plays with colors is a great idea. Perhaps you want to use a high contrast shot to draw attention to the subject, or perhaps you want to use a background that highlights the main colors of your brand, or perhaps you want to use bright colors to draw attention to your page. In any case, don’t overlook this bit when choosing the perfect picture for your profile. If the colors enhance the photo and match the mood of your page, it’s hard to go wrong.