Using photos and images in marketing to connect and engage with potential customers has been around a long time. Every business uses some imagery in their marketing to communicate the businesses products or services. And small businesses or startups marketing efforts have to work even harder as they potentially have smaller budgets. So, what importance do entrepreneurs or small business owners place on the quality of photos for their marketing? And why are the actual photos so important?
According to Trend Reports, between 65 and 85 percent of people describe themselves as visual learners. In this fast-paced world there is such an enormous number of images being displayed on product packaging, websites, social media, etc., that it can be rather overwhelming for the typical consumer. And that takes us to the importance of selecting quality and impactful images for your business. A study carried out by PR News found that content with good images get 94% more views than those without. So, how do you choose images more thoughtfully?
Startup and small business marketers can tap into additional real-time insights about the most popular visual trends via a new interactive data analytics tool, VisualGPS Insights, which is powered by over 2.6 billion annual Getty Images and iStock search queries and downloads. The tool can help show real-time interest around which images and videos are downloaded around a particular search term across time, regions, and industry segments – and even compare two terms. Through this tool, marketers can choose to either embrace societal trends or break free to differentiate their brand.
The latest VisualGPS consumer survey found that Gen Z and Millennials are twice as likely to make a purchase based on online imagery than Gen X or Baby Boomers, and young people in particular are turning to social media for entertainment and escapism, even more than communication. ‘In the wake of the pandemic, consumers of all ages are looking for brands to inspire them with visuals that feel fresh, new, and future‑oriented,’ said Getty Images and iStock Senior Creative Researcher Rebecca Rom-Frank. ‘So, when choosing design elements, it’s important for brands of all sizes to think about how to utilize tools and data analytics to better choose images for their marketing.’
Images used in marketing play a critical role. Marketers have known this for a while; a well-suited image, or series of related images makes for a successful campaign. But how do images really work their magic on us? And how can you exploit the potential of visuals in a digital space already cluttered with countless images?
Here are some insights as to why selecting good images are important to any marketing effort.
They are easy to identify. The truth is quite simple: as humans, we love looking at images. Our brains are designed to perceive the world visually, and we crave constant visual input. Images are so attractive to us because we devote more of our brain’s processing power to vision than to any other sense or ability. Seeing takes up a surprising 50% of our brain’s resources.
We understand them intuitively. As humans, we are not just happy to look at images, we are also intuitively good at understanding them. The speed at which we analyze an image is astounding and, in fact, we are able to feel the sense of a visual scene in an astonishing 1/10 of a second, way faster than any text we read.
They evoke emotions. More than any other type of content, images can evoke brand emotions in us. These emotions are more visceral than those triggered by reading a story and people make strong associations between these emotions and the content that evoked them. When choosing what image to pair with your online content, make sure the images you select invoke some sense of emotion. A dramatic landscape can be eye-catching, but a dramatic landscape with a child playing with a dog can be emotional.
They can be more memorable. Images that are easy to understand and able to evoke emotions, stay in our heads. The benefit of pairing images to your online content is so powerful that, people’s ability to remember information after three days goes up from 10% in the case of text alone to 65% when the content is paired with a powerful image.
They create potential engagement. Apart from grabbing our attention, triggering emotions and being memorable, pictures have one more superpower. As any marketer knows, images increase engagement. People don’t just want to look at photos, they want to share them and then they want to see more of them, and in fact, content with images receives up to 40% more shares than content without pictures.