If you're a consultant or solo entrepreneur you should put your face on your website. Preferably on the front page.
It's important that you're visible.
It's important because it's all about building trust and a sense of personality. After all, we do business with people.
Show Who You Are
I've written a lot about podcasting as a way of making it transparent to your potential customers just who you are and what you do. Video, of course, is also an incredibly useful tool for giving a clearer indication of who you are and what you do.
It's important, though, not to forget that a simple picture can go a long way to help build a sense of who you are, especially if you're not ready to get behind the mic or video camera just yet.
I like the way that Michael Hyatt puts his smiling face at the top of the header, welcoming you to his site. Michael's brand is personal, professional and incredibly helpful. I think you get a sense of this from the overall branding of the site and the face shot of Michael is one of the key ways you're brought into the page on first visit. The podcast, videos and cogent blog posts do a lot to reinforce the visual impression generated.
I love the fact that my good friend Jamie Soulati puts her smile on the front of her website. Her infectious smile emphasizes the enthusiasm and energy that you'll soon pick up on from Jamie's blogging and social media escapades. Warm and welcoming, it's a bold design (by my friends at New England Multimedia) that says sassy professionalism. I love what Jamie does.
Jay Baer, one of the leading voices in social media today, puts his face in the footer of the front page of his site. I seem to recall that Jay used a similar strategy to Michael Hyatt earlier on but I might be mistaken.
Even though the picture is in the footer, it still reminds you of the personality behind the company that has become Convince & Convert. A professional shot, it's likely to register with the B2B C-suite for its sense of professionalism. Jay's beaming face also oozes approachability.
Cliff Ravenscraft, the Podcast Answerman, has built his brand around his personal commitment to helping others embrace podcasting. I like the way he chooses to use a graphic in the header rather than a photograph. It brings a unique touch compared to the photographs, but still the personal aspect of his brand. The other strength of his header is that his face is placed right at the top left of the header: the natural point where we begin to scan a website.
Don't Be Afraid of Putting Your Face on Your Site
Look, I don't like having to put my face on my site. I've often thought I have a face for radio.
Still, put my podcast together with a few bits of video and pictures of who I am and any visitor to my site will get a sense of who I am.
What are you doing to show visitors to your site who you are? And how do you feel about it ?