Rethinking Your Promo Photo

Several times in the last week I had almost identical conversations with different agents, so I thought it might be a good idea to share it with my readers.  During the course of showing agents around my website we would eventually come to my photo.

matt photo 200The reaction is almost predictable.  There is a weird kind of stunned, nearly audible silence where you can almost hear the wheels turning in their minds as they try to decide what to say.  On the one hand, they almost universally like the photo, but on the other hand it contradicts everything they’ve ever seen and heard about promotional photos.

I deliberately wait a moment before continuing just to allow that tension to build a little.  Then I answer the obvious question: “What the heck kind of promo photo is that?!”  The answer is easy — the best kind.  My customers love it.  It makes me look like a normal, active, fun-loving guy as opposed to a stuffed shirt wanna-be professional.

Think about this:  Are you attracted to success or someone trying to look and act successful?  We’ve all been taught to “fake it ‘til we make it” and dress the same way, and present ourselves the same way, with the same looking business cards, brochures, websites, etc.  Then we wonder why people don’t see us as outstanding.

From my own local market and over a decade in real estate, only two agent photos stand out in my mind.  One was an over-sized black and white, 80s “big hair”, in a tuxedo shot that looked like it was from a Van Halen album cover.  It was so off-the-wall it stood out in the homes magazines like a sore thumb, but in a very good way.  It screamed, “I’m confident in my ability and I don’t have to act like everyone else.”  The photo belonged to a great agent named Eddie Terry (whose birthday is actually today.)

The other agent photo that still stands out was one of Dee Nott who was an agent with my company at the time and now owns her own company.  Her homes magazine ad had a photo from the beach.  She was wearing sunglasses, shorts, a tank top, and a ball cap.  She looked like the girl next door.  You couldn’t help but want to work with her because she was so relaxed and real.

The funny thing is that I’ve actually overheard people talking about each of those two photos, both in a good way.  Except for people occasionally making fun of the “glamour shots” of some agents, I don’t know that I’ve ever heard anyone talking about another Realtor® photo.  What a missed opportunity.

So, I challenge you to rethink your promo photos.  What do they really say about you?  Do they say that you are a fun person who people would love to meet and work with or do they say you are just another Realtor® in a big sea of Realtors®?  Do they say, “I am confident and I don’t need to act as if… because I already am?”

But don’t just  take my word for it.  Why don’t you conduct your own experiment?  What if you tried changing your photo to something that is truly outstanding?  After all, that’s what you want the message to be.  What’s the worst that could happen?  How much business is your current photo bringing you?  I’ll bet you will be amazed at just how many positive comments you receive.

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Comments 1

  1. author Chaz Bosse posted February 4th 2015. 1:27 pm Reply

    Am I the only one reading this stuff? I only say that because there are no other comments, and your info seems so useful. I have the stuffed shirt photo, just like everyone else, but I’m going to change it now. I read tons of real estate stuff, online, magazine, blogs, etc., and your stuff is BETTER. Stay Hungry, Stay foolish! – Steve Jobs.

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