Lately, people on Twitter seem to be changing their avatar a lot lately. It’s been difficult for me, because I often scan tweets and only stop to read the ones next to an avatar I recognize. When somebody changes their avatar, I get to wondering who the person is unless I’ve managed to remember their Twitter handle. I interact with thousands of people per week. It’s a heck of a lot easier to memorize a picture than it is a name out of thousands of people.
I’ve come to realize that an avatar isn’t just an avatar. It’s a logo. Take Jolie O’Dell for example. I started following her on Twitter only because a few of my friends were. One day while searching for tech articles, I recognized Jolie’s familiar picture next to the title of the post. Instantly, there was a new connection I had with her. A connection I wouldn’t have otherwise noticed just by her name.
The ProBlogger, Darren Rowse is another person who comes to mind. His bald head and glasses makes his face a perfect logo for his business. I’ve grown a huge interest in his writing and my eye stops to read whenever I see his avatar.
So with all this in mind, I give my avatar recommendations if you’re looking to build relationships online.
- Keep avatars consistent with every site you are on. Blogs, blog comments, Twitter, and Facebook. Keep ’em all the same.
- Don’t change your avatar too often. Sure, it’s fun to change them, but people won’t have a chance to get to know your face if you change it every other day.
- Get a Gravitar. Most sites use Gravitar to display avatars and it will help keep it consistent across different sites.
- Smile! People like to see a happy things. I know I read more comments and tweets when the avatar next to them has a smiling face.