Everyone loves holidays. An essential part of the packing for our family holidays were the cameras, both the still and video variety. As we drove off on our summer adventures the car was often stopped to snap that amazing waterfall or record that stunning sunset.
My father loved his cameras and photos and would drag all the friends and family together at the conclusion of the family holiday, where everyone had to “ooh and ahh” at all the shots he had captured on our expedition. I can still remember vividly some of the very embarrassing videos and images we had to endure as children being displayed in such a public way. I am still in therapy!
Remember that waving at the video camera was a normal practice when they first came out or that cringeworthy phrase “say hi to the camera“? I suppose we were learning to interact with the image capturing machines and is just a part of the human evolutionary process.
It was Complicated
Video production and photo processing in the past were a much more complicated process than today’s digital “shoot and show”. Films had to be taken to the local photo lab and you had to wait for days to get those images back. Sometimes that camera wasn’t working (or was that the photographer wasn’t working properly) and rolls of film were black, blurred or over exposed.
Vision Capture Machines are Everywhere
Cameras are now embedded in every smartphone and include high definition capabilities that display every pimple and blemish in glorious detail. Security cameras record crimes and crowds and unsuspecting criminals have often found themselves on the wrong side of the cameras.
The social web has taken visual imagery to a new level as taking photos and videos and sharing them on Facebook, Pinterest or Twitter can be as easy a couple of clicks.
Visual is Trending
Search volumes on the visual media of “Infographics” over the last 2 years reveal an increase of 800%. Social networks that are visually centric have exploded into mainstream consciousness these include the social media networks of Pinterest and Instagram.
Google+ when it was launched included a highly visual user interface that displayed images in large sizes with HD capabilties. Facebook followed very quickly afterwards with its much more visually arresting timeline format.
Web design has changed dramatically in the last 24 months as video and photos figuring prominently. Online stores use zoom features to display the stitching and closeups of products for consumers to validate quality and textures.
How Can you Use the Power of Images?
Including images in your marketing is vital in eliciting emotion and also in driving social sharing. The power of images to increase engagement is well documented on platforms such as Facebook and Google+.
#1. Include them in Press Materials
The more multimedia you include in your press releases the more views you are going to get. It is as simple as that.
#2. Embed them in your Articles
Boost your views by including images in your articles whether on your website or blog. The top categories for essential inclusion are political, news and sports according to research by Skyword.
#3. Post them to your Visual Sharing Platforms
Pinterest is now one of the most popular social networks. So set up an account and when you have published your blog or a new image (or infographic) on your website or online store make sure they are pinned to Pinterest. On some of my articles the infographic has been re-pinned more than 300 times which now means that there are 300 more locations that directly link back to my blog.
#4. Include Images for Local Search
When searching 60% of consumers are more likely to consider or contact a business that has an image show up on search results.
#5. Include High Definition Images in eCommerce
More customers value the “quality” of a products image than product specific information (63%) a long description (54%) or ratings and reviews (53%).
#6. Use Relevant Images Regularly on Facebook
Photos on Facebook are the top shared type of media by at least 50%.
So choose the most gorgeous photos and images that you can create or find and put them everywhere!
So What About You?
How are you using images and photos? Has it increased traffic and sharing?
What about infographics, have they worked for you? Do you have a Pinterest account?
Look forward to hearing your visual sharing stories.
By: Jeff Bullas