Text without images attracts less attention. I am behind that after seven days without header photos on the website. My WordPress template was no longer updated. With that, visitors no longer got the overall picture. And that is not conducive to communication power. A look at visual material.
A photo can tell more than 1000 words. But up there? A photo with a person on it stands out more than without a person. A half-naked person does better again than a covered person. Video works better than a still image. You can complete the last superlative step yourself.
A blog without images is almost reminiscent of a newspaper from before the war. You really have to head over to see what it's about. A beautiful image immediately makes a better story. As a blogger it means that you are not just a writer. The overall picture has to be right, the image must match the blog and the company behind it.
The 3-30-300 rule
How do text and image work together? The 3-30-300 line clearly illustrates that:
- You have three seconds to catch the attention. Similar to the two seconds to judge someone. In three seconds you mainly see the title and the corresponding image. If the image immediately conveys a moderate or bad feeling, it colors the assessment: am I going to read this? Do I click or scroll on?
- You have 30 seconds to interest your reader. You do that with a great intro, cups and any other images. The intro must immediately evoke relevance, such as a recognizable problem, a strong promise or an intriguing question. The more your article connects with a target audience, the easier it is to interest your readers. Of course, the intro must match the title and image.
- You have 300 seconds to deliver on the promise. After five minutes it is ready: the reader wants to continue. Either the article has been read, or the article is being saved for later, or it has just been enough. The average reading speed is 300 words per minute. Do you write a lot longer than 1500 words? Then it is wise to make it available as a PDF for later. Useful for collecting mail addresses, for example.
The right picture
As a freelance blogger for Emerce I was allowed to search for an image on the blog in the stockphoto database. Fortunately, that task was later taken over by a designer or other kind of image specialist, because that is pretty difficult, certainly because you want to show the right picture for such a well-known and popular blog. This article made that clear to me:
The article is about inbound marketing: attracting customers. Something that Jan and everyone else illustrated with magnets. The image specialist opted for a 'plane flagger': someone who signals a plane on the right track.
But sometimes you have to look for the footage yourself. There are countless sites that offer images free of charge - therefore commercially usable without acknowledgment of the source or risk of claims or lawsuits. I recommend this list:
There are many more of course. Here you have a short list of lists:
Choose visual material
I find this a difficult job, and I can imagine that I am not alone in that. I would like to give the following tips:
- Does it fit your website? Do header photos consist of photos or illustrations? Are there corporate identity colors that you would like to return? Does the image match your brand? For example, you regularly find photos of plants on Bloeise.
- Does it support your story? The image should make your story stronger, not confuse it. Does a reader understand what you want to tell based on your image and title within three seconds? Whether you talk about a product, service or make a comparison, the subject must be at the center of the image.
- Does it evoke emotion? Typical emotions that are evoked with images are: fear, trust, jealousy, pride, nostalgia. What does the image do to the reader on an emotional level?
- Quality! Sharp photo in the right format that clearly radiates quality. Unique for your audience: not such an image that all your competitors use. Originality is a sign of quality.
- People? People like to look at people. But preferably no stockphoto people: beautiful multicultural office people in wrinkle-free suits who drink milk laughing and giggling while watching a PowerPoint presentation. It must be your target audience that you show. Also pay attention to the clothes: does it suit your target group? What does a 70s outfit say, for example?
Of course also with offline advertising
The above of course applies just as well to offline Commercial material such as flyers, letter paper, business cards, envelopes, coasters, stickers, leaflets or banners. Because there are two major differences with online communication:
- It is impersonal. One to many as it is called. Made once and then freely distributed. Of course: you can personalize a mailing, but you don't do that with business cards or posters. You choose the target group by the way of distribution: who gives you a business card, where do you hang the poster.
- It is real life. And yes, that is a positive thing. J It just means that the target group is usually not behind his PC when he sees the advertising message and has to grab the mobile. Offline advertising material does not easily result in clicks, rather in views, which may result in a later action. That makes the importance of the correct image even greater.
Your own image bank
Last tip: make your own image bank. Images that match your company and that illustrate recurring themes well. Just look at the standard photo of a Nu.nl for a message about police deployment, for example. Do you look for images, do this not only for that one blog that you now want to send to the world, but choose possible images and save them. This way you get a lot more feeling with the right subjects, colors and originality.