The way to break through this mold is visuals.
Visual images are processed much more quickly by the brain than text. Therefore, they are a more immediate and effective way of reaching audiences. People are much more likely to view an article with images than one that is text-heavy.
With tons of content being pushed onto us daily, it’s hard to get peoples’ attention. Pictures, infographics, graphs/charts, symbols, or videos are great ways of grabbing people without forcing them to read. Rather, visuals invite people in, and encourage them to read.
To demonstrate exactly how visual images impact audiences, I created the following infographic:
Now that we know how important images are to content consumption, where exactly do we get these images?
Here are just a few great sources:
- Look for Creative Commons images on Flickr’s Advanced Search or royalty free photos on FreeImages or iStockPhoto. Sometimes stock photography can be cheesy, but there are millions of photos available—just look!
- Take your own photos! The downside to stock photography is that tons of other sites may be using the same images. If you want something original, take some snapshots yourself! No one expects you to be Annie Lebovitz, just take photos that are relevant to the story you’re telling.
- Make an infographic! Infographics are a great way to make difficult information easy to understand. You can hire designers to create infographics on sites like Visual.ly or Infographic Design Team. If you don’t have the means to hire out a design team (and most of us don’t), you can make your own infographics on easy-to-use sites like Piktochart or Canva.
Make sure that you’re not just telling with your content, but showing as well. Engage with your audience through using visuals creatively and thoughtfully. The more relevant and thought-provoking images you provide, the more likely people are to view and share your content.
So use your visuals—it’s super easy (and can be fun too)!
**Written by marketing intern Lindsay Miller, Marketing Communications major at Emerson College (Class of 2015).