I work a great deal with other writers and especially enjoy mentoring new ones who volunteer to write for us at CatholicMom.com. Many of them have beautiful voices and fantastic ideas but are just learning to navigate the challenging world of building a professional "platform".
I was recently conducting a search for a fellow writer online and was surprised by one of the high ranking Google images that appeared when I looked up their name. The top ranking photo showed this very professional person in quite unprofessional attire. The image in question came from the writer's Google+ profile, which had not been updated in several months.
This lead me to do a search for myself just to verify what images appeared in a search for "Lisa Hendey".
The results indicate to me why so many old images of me are used in promotional pieces for my speaking engagements:
My most recent headshot is there, but it's the seventh result (on the far right) and not the one that would most likely be selected at first glance.
There's also this beauty, which is probably not the worse photo ever taken of me (but it's close) -- destined to be left online just to keep my pride in check:
Thankfully for those of us working to control our online images, Google has a good set of tips to help your images appear in searches. As a result of reading these tips, I spent some time today studying Google's Image Publishing Guidelines and will be incorporating these best practices from now on, especially when sharing photos of myself online.
Who knows? Maybe soon all of those terrible photos of me (like the one above) will fall below the fold.
Your turn: When was the last time you did an image search for yourself? What did you think about the results?