Get In The Blinkin Photo!

October 2020

Point your camera (ok – phone!) at any 20something and they can rotate through a series of poses and pouts, that for my generation, were only for the red carpet! Point that same camera at someone nearer my age and you will get a different response! Asking for a photo will get a point blank refusal, a hands over the face or depending on the level of wine drunk, a jokey face, mock pout or drunken arms around friends. If they are up for the photo, they will, quite often, hold a wine or cocktail glass near their face or find something to do with their hands!

My generation are  just not made for the selfie game and o.k maybe we don’t need to take 55 poses in a bar toilets but seriously ….do it… get in the blinkin photo!

People buy from people, people talk to people and as gorgeous as your aesthetically pleasing Instagram grid is and your shiny logo – I would like to know who I am talking to. You need to be visible on social media, so I would love to see your face!

I love photos, I love to take them and oddly for someone my age, I don’t always mind being in them! Is it because I think I’m beautiful, stylish and look as young as I used to? Hell no, not in the slightest, I’m a 44 year old woman, stitched together by flaws, insecurities and newly forming wrinkles! But am I worthy of being in a photo? Hell yes – we all are! To me, a photo is a little snippet, a memory, a window to something fleeting, that in my eyes, the photo holds and stores for me and on social it’s part of…well being “social!”

When it comes to social, I share my face because I want people to know who I am, have a sense of who I am and know what I am about!

Growing up, we had two albums, to hold the memories for 2 kids and 2 adults and the number of pictures I can remember my mum,my nan, my grandad being in are few! This in itself makes me sad, do we only ever want to remember the ultra beautiful people and forget everyone that was a bit- well more ordinary? Of course not, we want to remember all the gorgeous people in our lives, their smiles, their grumps, the moments, the memories, we want to remember them all, drink them all up and re-live thoughts, feelings, even the bad fashions! We want to see them, who they spent their time with, where they visited, how we spent time together, what we wore and see more of it!

It is the same on social media, I want to know who I am dealing with and form a relationship with them. Does that mean I only buy from the beautiful people? Of course not – but I am more likely to buy from someone I have formed a relationship with and I have a picture of in my head! If it is a choice between the person I feel I know (albeit only on social) and someone with the same product, I don’t know so well, I know which one I will end up going with.

All the platforms have their own nuances, so am I suggesting you should post those bikini photos, drinks of sangria in hand? Should you post the pictures of you wearing a turkey costume at the office party? Well for me that depends, it depends on who you and your brand are, some brands I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see any of those photos – others not so much! Some photos are suitable for a snapshot of “the real you” so I might see it in a story but not a post or article for instance.

Some photos don’t fit with your aesthetics, your Instagram grid, your ususal style but then maybe they are perfect for a story or you can make a Reel or Go Live!

Many of the platforms are changing, LinkedIn for one has changed considerably but is still more formal in my mind than Instagram or Facebook! With some exceptions, I wouldn’t expect to see the same sort of pictures on LinkedIn but it really does depend on who you are, what service or product you sell and your overall brand!

When we are no longer here and our kids, or relatives, sift through the photos, will they discard certain photos? Will they throw away all the photos showing you once you started getting a little rounder, more wrinkled or doing only the mundane? Will they delete them from their social or digital accounts? No, they will look at them all and see you, as you are, or as we were in that moment!

When we are showing up on social, it is the same, I am not looking to only buy from polished shiny people who look beautiful! I am looking to connect with real people, with their smiles, their warmth and their words. I want to look at people and connect their image with their brand – their tone of voice and what I thought I already knew! Despite what we may believe, it’s not all about perfection.

So does that mean I love every photograph of myself – certainly not! Hating those cringy unfiltered photos you want nobody to see, is human nature! However, if I was at that event, that party or my child’s birthday,  I like to have at least one photo. If I am talking to you on social, I want you to know who I am!

Maybe we still want to filter the hell out of it on Instagram, tone it to black and wine and chop off a bingo wing or two, whilst still looking like us and that’s also ok (unless you are filtering it so it no longer resembles you!)

So please I implore you…..be seen, don’t be invisible on social because if you are…..well I may just buy off that person who certainly isn’t!