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Is Your Headshot Killing Your Business?

December 13 2019

friendly young woman in blue We've all seen them: Realtor headshots on for sale signs, bus benches, business cards, you name it. But do they actually make an impression on potential buyers and sellers?

In an industry where a Realtor's image is their brand, it's hard to think that those carefully crafted photos are a waste. To find out if a real estate agent's photo, whether it be a selfie, cartoon or glamour shot, was affecting the amount of business received, Transactly set out to poll potential buyers and sellers from across the US.

Image Gets You Hired

This isn't a surprise for most real estate professionals, but the results? Realtor headshots do matter!

73% of respondents said that a business professional's image impacted their decision to hire.

What does this mean for you? It's time to take out the microscope and review the image you're setting for yourself and you brand. This doesn't mean you have to book an hour in a studio with a modeling photographer, who speaks french, and brings their own wind machine. It just means to retire the 1985 Glamour Shot with the boa and those teased mullets. Not sure if you fall into this category? Check out six headshots to stop taking.

Items you'll need for your updated close up:

  • A nice blouse or blazer (Perhaps a few tasteful accessories to spice it up)
  • A camera that is not disposable and maybe a buddy to hold it
  • A plain or serene backdrop (No bathroom selfies please)
  • A flattering angle.
  • A Smile that says you're happy for new clients

transactly realtor headshots poll 1

Say Cheese

According to our poll, it's not just the image that matters. It's how you are perceived. Trying to play the dashingly mysterious card with a serious face? Well, our respondents indicate it may not be working. The majority of potential buyers and sellers, want a Realtor headshot that shows you smiling above all else. While professional attire may play a part in whether they choose to contact you, showing you are nice and likable with a smile appears to pay off.

The results also show that potential clients want to see a Realtor headshot that is the real you. When asked which agent they were least likely to hire, respondents said those with a cartoon as a headshot. So save those cartoons for the wall of your office, and put your real face out there for the masses.

transactly realtor headshots poll 2

Headshot Placement

After you've got the perfect headshot, you want to get the most for your marketing dollars in regards to placement. It appears buyers and sellers want, you guessed it, to see your photos on social media.

Update those social media accounts. While you're at it, show your personality with actual photos of you out in the community. Picnics, 5K's, anything that shows the world you are a real person. Just posting new listings time and time again is going to get you unfollowed. It's social media, so be social!

Use your newly created image to purchase Facebook ads in your local area or to update your yard signs.

Re-evaluate where you are spending your marketing dollars to get your image out to the world.

transactly realtor headshots poll 3

Realtor Headshot vs. Recommendation

The one area that the responses showed headshots overwhelmingly DIDN'T matter, was when the agent came as a recommendation from someone else. Overwhelmingly, 68% said they would still call a recommended agent, even if their headshot was undesirable. According to the National Association of Realtors, in 2018, "39% of sellers who used a real estate agent found their agent through a referral by friends or family." That's the power of word of mouth marketing. In a world where image is everything, consumers will still choose a professional who came recommended by Aunt Lou, even if their bus bench photo is throwing up finger guns.

transactly realtor headshots poll 4

In the End

Headshots represent your business, and they do matter. Do yourself an entrepreneurial favor, and spend your marketing dollars where you get the most for your money and put some real thought into how you want to be perceived- smiling and wearing business casual.

To see the full survey, with methodology, click here.

To view the original article, visit the Transactly blog.