It takes 13 milliseconds for the human brain to process an image, according to studies from MIT. Here is how to use that to your advantage in your marketing strategy.
Snapchat, Instagram, Vine, Tumblr, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter… the popularity of these visual-heavy social media sites is testimony to the power of an image. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but in this social media age an image can be worth millions of likes, thousands of Retweets and some great engagement with others.
For example, this photo of President Obama totaled more than 2.1 million likes, becoming the most liked Facebook photo of all time.
Obama’s photo was also the most popular Tweet of all time until Ellen Degeneres gathered a few friends for a quick selfie at the Oscars. It would seem that as endearing as POTUS and FLOTUS are, it’s hard to beat an image of the top actors and actresses of our time (especially when Julia Roberts makes that face!)
Images are what makes the internet so powerful; without visual stimulation we would be left with radio. Not to mention that we would never be able to see what it looks like when a python swallows barbeque tongs or be able to send our friends memes.
There’s a reason that memes are so much funnier than jokes. According to MIT, when we interact with an image our eyes perform “rapid identification”which allows our brain to make snap judgements about the information on display. “The fact that you can do that at these high speeds indicates to us that what vision does is find concepts. That’s what the brain is doing all day long — trying to understand what we’re looking at,” says Mary Potter, an MIT professor of brain and cognitive sciences. Faster means funnier because we don’t have time to reconsider our lol.
Visuals should underpin all of your marketing efforts. Here’s 5 ways to harness their power…
01. There’s no such thing as ‘too many’, more is more when it comes to images.
Blog Pros recommend using an image for every 350 words as a rule for maximum engagement.
- Mix it up.
Use a combination of cartoons, photos, hand drawn images and just about anything else you can find.
- Remember that graphs and charts work!
Graphs and charts can add credibility to your brand if you cite them appropriately, consumers love facts and figures, especially in an easy-to-grasp format. Educators have long relied on visual aids like graphs and charts to help students understand concepts and your readers will respond in the same way.
- Be relevant.
Try to think like your average reader and make sure that the selected image is representative of the idea you are trying prove. Working on your brand DNA can help you understand who your customers are and what visuals they will respond well to.
- Use Infographics; they are a great way to pack information into easy-to-digest visuals.
People love infographics! On average people will open a link to an infographic based on any topic, just because they are fun. Use an infographic whenever possible and check out this one from Midphase.com/blog.
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