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10 photos you should never send to a journalist if you want good PR



Woman checking photos on a newspaper
Bad choices of images reduce your chance of being featured in the media | Photo: Keenan Constance

I feel sorry when I get an image to illustrate a quote for an article that has exceptional quality, but the completely wrong pose, background, or concept. I think about how much effort went into it (often a few hundred dollars, too). And, in the end, what very often prevents a photo from being published alongside the quote of the person featured isn’t the fact that it wasn’t shot by a top photographer – it is simply because people try too hard and miss the point while shooting a clean image to represent a serious business.

After years of working with corporate communications, mainstream journalists, and content creators all over the world, I have learned which photos do not work. Therefore, here are the 10 PR photo styles that are going straight in the journalist’s bin.



Avoid cropping images too much

Close up of a young woman

Let’s start technical: when choosing the image you will send over to a journalist with a press release or quote, opt for a clean image that has, at least, a bit of space on top of your head and below your shoulders. This will allow the editors to slightly crop your photo, if needed, without the published image ending up being a botched close-up that will make your head look excessively big.



Skip overly artistic or photoshopped images

Artistic photo of a woman

There are amazing retouchers out there. They are digital mavericks spending hours in front of their laptops to make us look better and our photos sharper. However, too much tampering with an image may result in something that barely resembles a human – and that is not what you want on a journalistic piece. The only occasions when artist images are allowed is when the article is about digitally enhancing files, or artistic related topics themselves.



Why group photos aren’t used

Group shot of your entrepreneurs

Time is everything. You have probably heard that journalists are busy people with tight deadlines and increased workloads created by staff cuts. So, think twice before sending a photo of your whole team unless you have been requested to do exactly that. Truth is: if I have to write a caption to help the reader identify you in a photo, then chances are I won’t be using that particular image. The rule is simple: a quote is attributed to one person. Even when someone is talking on behalf of a whole company, it is still one person.



Don’t cover any inch of your face

Woman covering her face partially with her hands

Photo: Christian Ferrer

Keep your hands away from your face. This is a tip that may sound like it is Covid advice. However, it is actually about credibility. Readers want to see you in order to believe what you are saying. Hands, large accessories, or shadows covering any part of your face are unwelcomed. The only exception is if it is a fashion feature and these things need to be on display to convey a message.



Avoid black and white images

Black and white photo of a man

Photo: Harris Memovic

I really like black and white images – but I also like them kept away from a journalistic piece.

It is 2021 – the world is technicolour. If you still send black and white photos to any publication you are reducing your publication chances by 95%. Just don’t.



Keep your holiday-style images to yourself

Woman posing in front of the Eiffel Tower in Paris

Here is something that no one dares to say: even travel-related features don’t need many photos of you in front of a tourist landmark.

If a journalist needs an image of, lets say, the Eiffel Tower in Paris, there are thousands of image banks with professional photos better than any attempt made by an amateur photographer on holiday. Most of the travel features aren’t even about a destination but the journey (how did you plan it, getting there, etc.) or a very specific thing (a traditional dish, the local lifestyle, your struggles, etc.).

Most importantly: If the topic you are submitting a quote for isn’t related to travel, this is one more reason to keep your photos of you wearing sunglasses, or sipping cocktails by the beach, solely to yourself.



You are not a 40s Hollywood star

Man smoking a cigar

Photo: Andrea Piacquadio

Images holding cigars, or any beverage, rarely will make the cut (even if the feature is about smoking or drinking). It just doesn’t look good. Well, unless you are a Hollywood star from the golden age, like James Dean or Rita Rayworth – but they are both dead.




No to awkward poses, please

Woman posing with her arm behind her head on the street

You would be shocked by the number of people submitting images holding their chin, flicking their hair, or with their arms behind their head. Let me put it bluntly: photographers that recommend awkward poses to business owners and their teams should not get paid – they should be sacked for good. Keep it simple and don’t accept suggestions of poses that make you feel unnatural.



Side portraits are a big no-no

Woman posing sideways

Photo: Viviana Escobar

Unless it is a feature about someone being arrested – and, in that case, I doubt very much I would be getting that image from you when I can easily have it directly from the police files – please never send a picture of you in a profile position. It will be deleted in less than a second.




Avoid distracting expressions

Man distracted and looking away in a coffee shop

Photo: Austin Distel

I have received pictures of interviewees winking, blinking, wildly laughing, or looking away from the camera pretending to be in a candid pose.

Guess what? The more you try different things, the more you increase the possibility of distracting readers. Also, avoid fake, candid images of you looking away (it is very 2015, even if you are an influencer).


The bottom line and the main takeaway here is: less is more.

A simple clean image with good lighting is the only thing you need to professionally represent yourself while being quoted on a publication, be it a newspaper, a magazine, digital portal or business brochure.

Any distracting element or pose will cause more harm than good.

Ignore the basics of a good image to be sent to a journalist and it will be deleted, without publishing, faster than it took you to say cheese while taking the awkward photos you have been sending to media outlets with your quotes and press releases.


And here is how to do it right

Portrait ideas for entrepreneurs, artists, consultants and businesses owners wanting to leave a professional impression.


Are you a coach or writer? these portrait ideas would suit you:


Portrait ideas for fearless entrepreneurs:


Portrait poses for seasoned business partners:


Portrait ideas for consultants and self-employed professionals:


Also some portrait ideas for artists, architects and designers:


Proud small business owners, we have got your back:


Professional Portrait ideas for any niche of business:




The Häagen-Dazs Rose Project announces 50 nominees



Kim Rihal, founder of social enterprise Equal Education, is one of the 50 women shortlisted for The Häagen-Dazs Rose Project
Kim Rihal, founder of social enterprise Equal Education, is one of the 50 women shortlisted for The Häagen-Dazs Rose Project

Earlier this year, on International Women’s Day 2023, Häagen-Dazs launched ‘The Rose Project’, a global initiative with a $100,000 (USD) bursary grant inviting nominations to recognise unsung trailblazing women in honour of the brand’s female co-founder Rose Mattus. Yesterday, 23 November, on what would have been Rose Mattus’ birthday, Häagen-Dazs announced the top 50 #WomenWhoDontHoldBack nominees being shortlisted for their achievements and its five globally accomplished Häagen-Dazs Rose Project judges.

Over 2,500 applications were received for The Häagen-Dazs Rose Project putting forward pioneering efforts and societal contributions made by women across the globe. From these, 50 talented and inspirational women have been shortlisted and will be put forward to win one of five monetary grants of $20,000 (USD), which will be announced on International Women’s Day 2024, to continue their exceptional work, unleash their potential or give to a cause they are passionate about. The top 50 shortlist includes women from 17 countries hailing from across Europe, Asia, Africa & Middle East, Australia and the Americas.

The all-female judging panel from across the world has been handpicked for the final selection stage of The Häagen-Dazs Rose Project includes. UK-based author, broadcaster and philanthropist Katie Piper, fashion entrepreneur and advocate for women’s fertility issues, Velda Tan from Singapore and Spanish entrepreneur and creative director Inés Arroyo, are amongst the judges.

“International Women’s Day 2023 marked the launch of The Häagen-Dazs Rose Project to honour the legacy of our co-founder, Rose Mattus, and create a fund platform to provide opportunities to women across all fields around the world who are truly deserving of support and recognition. We were thrilled to receive thousands of nominations across countries and our #WomenWhoDontHoldBack Top 50 shortlist is a compelling and diverse mosaic of trailblazing female narratives that moved us and serve as an inspiration to women everywhere”, says Aurélie Lory, Häagen-Dazs spokesperson.

To find out more about the story of each entrepreneur shortlisted for The Häagen-Dazs Rose Project, visit:

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47% of women feel their workplace is not combatting inequality



Katherine Maher, CEO, Web Summit, on Centre Stage during day one of Web Summit 2023 at the Altice Arena in Lisbon, Portugal
Katherine Maher, CEO, Web Summit, on Centre Stage during day one of Web Summit 2023 | Photo: Eóin Noonan/Web Summit

The proportion of women who feel that their workplace is not taking appropriate measures to combat gender inequality has nearly doubled in a year, a new survey has revealed.

Web Summit, the world’s largest technology event taking place in Lisbon this week, has released its third annual State of Gender Equity in Tech report, which is based on a survey distributed among its women in tech community.

76.1 percent of respondents feel empowered to pursue and/or hold a leadership position; fewer respondents (41.8 %) feel the need to choose between family and career when compared to 2022 (50.4 %); and there is at least one woman in a senior management position in 80.4 percent of respondents’ companies, a similar proportion to last year (81.3%).

The survey found that 70.5 percent of respondents feel pressure to prove their worth compared to male counterparts, while 77.2 percent feel they need to work harder to prove themselves because of their gender.

Over three quarters of respondents (76.1 %) feel empowered to pursue and/or hold a leadership position. And almost half of respondents think that their workplace is not taking appropriate measures to combat gender inequality, increasing from 26 percent in 2022 to 47
percent in 2023.

“While it is encouraging to see progress in some areas, such as those feeling the need to choose between their family and career, there are also some deeply concerning trends within this report. Seeing an increase in those who report having experienced sexism in the workplace in the last year is disheartening in 2023. We hope that this kind of research can breed some positives, and that it will push workplaces – and women within these workplaces – to broach these topics and make progress in these areas,” said Carolyn Quinlan, VP of community at Web Summit.

Last year, 42 percent of attendees at Web Summit were women and 33 percent of speakers were women. In 2023 these numbers have slightly improved with 43 percent of attendees and 38 percent of speakers on stage being women this year.

The women in tech programme at this year’s Web Summit is at capacity, and the women in tech programme at Web Summit Rio 2023 reached capacity in record time.

The WebSummit 2023 is running from November 13th to 16th in Lisbon, Portugal.

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Krispy Kreme to give away free donuts on World Kindness Day



A box of Krispy Kreme donuts opened and with donuts inside
The company, founded in 1937, is giving away 60,000 free doughnuts around the world today | Photo: Clément Proust

American multinational doughnut company and coffeehouse chain, Krispy Kreme, is celebrating “World Kindness Day” today by distributing free donuts in the US and the UK.

The chain is giving away a box of a dozen glazed donuts for free with no purchase necessary. But only the first 500 guests that visit each participating Krispy Kreme US stores on “World Kindness Day”, Monday November 13th, will be able to get a free box of donuts.

Krispy Kreme often gives away free or discounted donuts to generate buzz on special occasions. The company, founded in 1937, traditionally gives out free donuts to customers on National Donut Day, celebrated on the first Friday of June of each year. And in July, a dozen of glazed donuts were sold for 86 cents to celebrate its 86th birthday.

Thousands of free donuts are also expected to be given away today across Krispy Kreme stores in the United Kingdom, with customers being encouraged to ask for the World Kindness Day offer. No purchase necessary.

The company, which operates in over 30 countries around the world, said it wants the brand associated with World Kindness Day to make “meaningful connections” with customers.

“World Kindness Day is an opportunity to make a positive difference by being generous,” Dave Skena, Krispy Kreme’s global chief brand officer, said in a release. “Simple gestures of caring and thanks, including sharing a sweet treat, is a great way to do that.”

Krispy Kreme said that it’s considering expanding a limited partnership it has with McDonald’s to sell more of its donuts at the latter’s location.

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