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Which Clothes Make You Professional?


None. That’s right…NONE!

No, I don’t mean not wearing any clothes (save that for the French Riviera or a deserted beach somewhere). I mean that it’s not your clothes that make you a “professional”.

There are people that wear suits that fit them 30 lbs ago and there are people that know what a tailor is. There are people that think “dry clean only” means the gentle wash cycle and low heat and then there are people who know their local dry cleaner owner by name. For the sake of this post, I’m going to assume that you’re the latter in each example above.

Assuming that you dress the part, which depends on your location and local customs, your clothes will give a first impression when meeting in person. But that first impression is only part 2, 3 or even part 10 of your actual “first” impression (so is it actually a 2nd impression?).

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These days, many consumers are getting their first impression of you on-line, well before they ever meet you IRL.

  • If your blog was their first impression of you, how professional of an image did your blog convey?
  • What about your Twitter profile and updates?
  • What about your Facebook profile?
  • Have you updated your LinkedIn profile lately?
  • What about your Google Reader shared posts – what image are they conveying?
  • What are your friends and clients publicly saying about you on-line?

To be considered a “professional”, you need to convey your professionalism and act like one on-line as well as IRL. Without doing that on-line, you’ll never get a meeting IRL.

Take a look at your on-line presence…

  • Does it convey professionalism?
  • Do you come across as credible and knowledgeable?
  • Would you consider hiring you as a Realtor if you came across your on-line profiles?

If you can’t say “yes” to these questions with certainty, save a shopping trip and money on a suit and take another look at your on-line presence.

And the beauty of it is, the more professional your on-line presence is, the more casual you’ll be able to dress when you do meet/work with your clients IRL You may soon find your clients asking you to “dress down” or “dress more comfortably” because they’ve dressed down themselves and are comfortable enough with you to see you in jeans or even a t-shirt and shorts.

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Written By

Danilo Bogdanovic is a Real Estate Consultant/REALTOR(R) in Northern Virginia and author/owner of and Danilo serves on various committees with the Dulles Area Association of REALTORS(R) and the Virginia Association of REALTORS(R).



  1. Cathy

    August 22, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    Having an unprofessional blog/facebook/twitter is like having your slip showing or lipstick on your teeth when you first meet someone. It might not ruin your deal, but I promise everytime they see you that will be the first thing they remember. And when they “refer” you to a friend. it’ll be the first thing they mention. Great article!

  2. Paula Henry

    August 22, 2009 at 8:59 pm

    Danilo – Great post! You got me thinking I may need to freshen up my image.

  3. Arlington condos Jay

    August 24, 2009 at 9:50 pm

    I’m selling about 45 homes this year. I wear flip flops, short and t-shirts (sometimes polos too though) for ALL my appts. I’ve worn a suit once in the last 2 years.

    The great thing about impressing people with your online presence and writings/articles, is that they already have decided what they think about you in advance usually so the casual look just comes across as being “real” with them versus slick when you finally get face to face time….

    Thank God for the liberty to run our own businesses in this country. It’s great being able to do real estate however you want–there isn’t a right or wrong way. But I can assure you, there is a more comfortable way called flops! 🙂

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