Stop right now before you settle for a pre-selected Google+ cover image just because it’s there, it’s easy, and it was hand-picked by Google so it has to be a winner, right? Wrong; picking from a limited assortment of cover photos shows that you’re either lazy or uncreative, both of which don’t bode well for you whether it’s a business or personal social media (SM) profile. Like it or not, your cover image is just as important as your profile image and it depends on what type of vibe you’re after to determine the direction you should head.
In fact, since cover images are even bigger than profile pictures, they’re prime real estate space to showcase an area of your business or personality. Product photos are a great cover image source and can be changed on a regular basis depending on your inventory. This is a great choice for fashion designers, restaurants and other businesses that have appealing and constantly changing “inventory.” If a potential customer visits your page for the first time, draw them in immediately with a tempting cover display.
Face, meet name
A staff photo is a great choice for customer service oriented businesses, whether you’re an online doctor’s office or a local mechanic shop. People want to know who’s on the other end, especially if the business is all about service. Choose a professional image that shows your staff as the expert, friendly and smiling people they are. If you don’t have a good group image, get one and choose another image as a placeholder.
How about a customer photo that showcases just how much other consumers enjoy your business? Solid sources might be from your last customer appreciation day or special event. You can also rally your fan base to send their own favorite photos from events, which is another avenue for customer engagement. People want two things in customer service: Friendly staff and satisfied customers (because they want to be those happy customers).
Work + play
A workplace photo can be an excellent choice assuming that the place of work is clean, exciting, friendly or a combination of all the above. This can be especially alluring if your place of business is one that welcomes customers so they can get a preview of what’s to come. Bonus points if you have an especially inviting reception, a resident pet that welcomes guests or a standout facility that deserves to be shown off.
On the other hand, you can include an image from a recent event such as a fundraiser you participated in (or hosted). Event photos are a way to showcase involvement in community or the fun side of your business. If you’re a particularly busy company, a “weekly showcase” can be a constantly changing cover update that doesn’t just keep followers up to speed on what’s happening, but is also a subtle way to stay in newsfeeds on some SM sites without being obnoxious.
Go ahead and show off
Finally, don’t forget about a simple chart that shows off what your business does or a recent award. This is your profile and your time to shine. A little information on what you do, how you do it, or accolades for doing it great can go a long way. No matter, what, make sure the cover is quality, captures the eye and is never left blank. Why forego a blank canvas?