The headline says it all. "Does your LinkedIn photo look influential?"

On a recent Under The Influence radio show, hosted by Terry O'Reilly, our Influence Event keynote speaker, he talked about www.PhotoFeeler.com and how you can quickly – and easily – have your headshots rated – for free.

As Terry said during his show, in advertising, your profile picture would be the product shot. It is visually the most important part of the commercial. More time and care is put into a product shot than any other moment of a typical commercial.

Terry did this with his own photo and was surprised with the results – as was I when I put my photos to the test.

Photo Feeler offers you the opportunity to upload your photo for free. You rate 10 other photos and others will rate your photo – anonymously. It only takes a few minutes and here's what Terry received:

Competence: 77%
Influence: 95%
Likability: 19% (He's actually very likable!)

I thought this was interesting especially since I recently had new professional photos – the 3 photos shown below...all taken on the same day (with different outfits, because that's what women do).

You can see the results for yourself:

Now the interesting thing is, before I did this test, so many of my friends told me they loved the photo of me laughing. That was actually taken during a funny moment – I wasn't faking it – so I used it for my social media profile picture.

But one of the comments from the testers said I looked fake! Wow! So I immediately removed that image as my profile shot (note the Competent ranking – only 35%) and changed it to the middle photo, which rated much higher overall.

Photo Feeler also made note of the following when it comes to your LinkedIn photo:

  • No photo – what are you hiding?
  • Scenery or your pets – not professional.
  • Old photos – you must deliver what you promise so update your photo.

Snap judgments are a fact of human nature – so ensure your photo tells the right story to your audience, whether you're looking for a job or looking to attract new clients.

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Susan Regier, owner of Vantage One Writing, is an in-demand copywriter, marketing strategist, and business breakthrough specialist to serious entrepreneurs who want to have a profitable business they are passionate about.  She has the uncanny ability to find the hidden gems in a business that can ignite sales and profits for her clients.  Claim your free guide: 15 Tips to Increase Your Influence, Attract More Clients & Make More Money at SusanRegier.com.