You might not think of LinkedIn as an image-centric social media platform. It’s a site where your resume is supposed to speak for itself. But images can play an important role. Your LinkedIn background photo, personal profile photo, banner, and other images associated with your account give prospective employers or clients subtle but important cues about who you are as a person and as a worker. Here are some best practices to help you make your best impression.
Selecting a LinkedIn profile photo is a whole different ball of wax than picking out a Facebook profile. You want to convey a sense of professionalism and distinction. Head shots are preferred as they provide a more personalized feel than a distant full-body shot. Keep your head shots up to date: showing up to an interview after posting a picture from a decade earlier will make for a jarring first impression. Dress in an appropriate way for your job (or for the job you want to get): the wardrobe of an investment banker is going to be different than the wardrobe of someone in a startup environment. Finally, don’t waste all the effort you’ve put into your profile picture by using the wrong size image: keep your profile photo at the recommended LinkedIn image size of 400 by 400 pixels for the best results.
If you have a personal LinkedIn page (as opposed to a business one), you may be uncertain about what you should use as your LinkedIn background photo (also referred to as a LinkedIn cover photo). Opinions vary on the subject: you could use an image of personal significance, one that relates to your field, or you could even use a LinkedIn background photo generator. Regardless of what avenue you go down, be sure to use the appropriate LinkedIn cover photo size for a personal LinkedIn page: the optimal LinkedIn cover photo size for personal profiles is 1584 by 396 pixels. But don’t be alarmed if you have trouble with those dimensions: LinkedIn cover photos are even trickier than Twitter headers, so an image without much text is probably the way to go.
LinkedIn business profiles are governed by slightly different rules than LinkedIn personal photos. For starters, businesses tend to gravitate towards incorporating their logos into their LinkedIn banners: you don’t see as much variety as you do in personal pages. Further, the LinkedIn banner size for a business page is different than the LinkedIn cover photo size on a personal profile. A business’s recommended LinkedIn banner size is 1536 by 768 pixels, a subtle but important difference.
LinkedIn business profiles are governed by slightly different rules than LinkedIn personal photos. For starters, businesses tend to gravitate towards incorporating their logos into their LinkedIn banners: you don’t see as much variety as you do in personal pages. Further, the LinkedIn banner size for a business page is different than the LinkedIn cover photo size on a personal profile. A business’s recommended LinkedIn banner size is 1400 x 425 pixels, a subtle but important difference.
Underneath the Overview Tab, you can find LinkedIn’s Life Tab which showcases a variety of aspects of a company’s culture to specifically targeted audiences. The Life Tab can get a cover photo of its own: this particular LinkedIn image size is 360 by 120 pixels.
The parameters on LinkedIn image posts can be complicated to untangle. But the site continues to evolve, offering new options for personal accounts and businesses. There’s a reason why so many people rely on LinkedIn for career advancement, even if the rules governing its images are occasionally arcane.