Every real estate agent knows first impressions are everything. This too, applies to your marketing self-portraits. Please retire the outdated and ridiculous portraits that at some point in time, was thought to be “on point”. It’s good practice to use a current image of yourself because the one you’re using from 2013 is already outdated and your look has changed. Unconventional concepts such as a portrait with your pet, just simply come off as strange to your audience.
Another mistake is thinking you’re a graphic designer because you downloaded a trial version of Adobe Photoshop and through a tutorial, have taught yourself how to cut backgrounds out of images. If you must alter an image you want to use, try to solicit the help of a professional or at least a student who has had some experience in altering images.
Professional, polished portraits are a must in today’s competitive market. I’m not saying everyone look the same but at least put some effort into it – wear something nice, keep the backgrounds simple – stage it just like you would a property before taking a picture. Tips on taking simplistic portraits are all over the internet such as this one on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8g_pkDOIKjI
You don’t have to have fancy and expensive photographer equipment to get a new and improved portrait done. If all else fails, ask a friend or family member who can not only assist you but also can give you honest feedback. Get that new and improved head shot!