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In this fast-moving world, when you have a message to convey, people hardly have time to sit down and read anything lengthy anymore. However if you are able to capture the essence of what you want to say with an image or photograph, you have a much better chance of capturing a larger percentage of your target audience. Even in newspapers and magazines, people look to pictures to tell the story if they don’t have time to read the entire article.
Visuals are always more effective than just the written word. An image is more colorful than a group of words, literally and figuratively. People tend to stop and look at compelling visuals. Our attention is more readily attracted to a picture rather than simply a group of words. In an instant, an image, if curated well, can convey an idea or an emotion which will stick with you much longer than words on a page.
Images should not be an afterthought. What will be displayed in the timeline on Facebook or LinkedIn when someone shares a link to your content will to a great extent determine who likes, shares or clicks your link. Your images will directly effect you web traffic.
You can purchase high-resolution stock images online, but be sure to choose your images carefully and try to only select those that align in style with one another.
When sourcing imagery, you need to look for a variety of things. Color, lighting, background, and the image itself should each play a huge part in the picking. One of my favorite places to source imagery is shutterstock.com. You can purchase “packages” that are quite affordable.
When choosing, be sure images are easy on the eye, easy on the brain. Pictures facilitate the learning process, and are easier to remember and associate with facts, which is why people prefer them to plain old words.
As you choose images, be sure depending on your messaging that they tug at the heartstrings and evoke emotion. Many times photographs or pictures are able to capture emotions that words cannot, no matter how cleverly they are used.
Most often though, it is not just the pictures alone that make a point, as when they are combined with creative copy; visuals help to push home the message in a most powerful way and thus play more than just a supporting role. That is how they should be used, when the power of two is packed into one, the punch is that much stronger.
If you take away nothing more than this, just remember… the picture supports the content, so make sure you pick an image that is relevant to the subject matter being supported. It all has to work like a cohesive set. Good luck!